**This post has been entered in Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist!**
It’s cold and flu season, unfortunately. We’ve each taken a turn with at least one minor cold already this year (we haven’t been on top of taking our fermented cod liver oil…even though I know better!). It’s not fun to be sick. But it’s also not safe to take over-the-counter cold and cough medicines.
For starters, the OTC meds aren’t approved or recommended for children under 6. For another, they’re obviously suppressive in nature. Third, they have unpleasant side effects, like drowsiness. Who needs it?
Instead, try out this homemade, herbal cough and cold syrup. It’s thick, sweet, and soothing, with lots of awesome properties!
- 1/2 c. dried elderberries
- 2 tbsp. rosehips
- 2 tbsp. slippery elm bark
- 1 tbsp. fenugreek powder
- 3 c. water
- 1 c. raw honey*
Put all the ingredients except honey into a saucepan.
Turn it on and simmer on low until thick and syrupy, 20 – 30 minutes.
Remove from heat and allow to cool for about an hour. Then, strain the mixture.
Add the raw honey to the cooled mixture and stir together. Now you have a homemade, safe syrup!
*Please remember that raw honey is not approved for babies under age 1. You may choose to use sucanat instead, in which case you need to dissolve it in the still-hot herbal mixture, if you are planning to give this to a baby. I would personally not give it to a baby under 8 months anyway.
The reason that this works so well is because elderberry is known to have cold fighting properties, slippery elm soothes sore throats and coats mucous membranes (and aids digestive issues), fenugreek increases perspiration and helps the body clear mucus more effectively (and also aids digestive issues), and rosehips are very high in natural vitamin C. Combine it all and you’ve got major cold-fighting power!
(Please remember I’m not a doctor or an herbalist, and this post isn’t intended to diagnose, cure, or treat anything. This is a formula I use to help my own family so I’m passing it along to you. Always do your own research about any medicinal option and consult a health practitioner if needed.)