You know the feeling, that itch in the back of your throat, the tingle in your sinuses that says you’ve got a cold coming on?  It’s at this point that I start downing the Airborne from my stockpile in hopes that it will work some voodoo magic (which, honestly, I can’t swear to ever having happened).  When I start to feel like I’m getting sick, or even that one of my kids is coming down with something, I’ll do almost anything to stop the illness from progressing.  This feeling of desperation begs the question, What would I do to avoid it?  Well, here’s one (hard core!) krazy couponer’s strategy for staying healthy all school year.

This is one of the cheapest remedies for warding off colds and the flu.  Not only  is it inexpensive to make, but most families will have many of the ingredients on hand. Assuming that it works, it will save you mounds of doctor co-pays.  We have three children, so you can just imagine the savings for our family.  So why am I thinking about cold remedies already?  Well, the school year just started, and we all know that’s how those nasty viruses spread so quickly.  This recipe will need to be prepared four weeks before using.  Last year I waited way too long to make this and regretted it.  Not this time around, though…I’m going to be ready!

Benefits listed by ingredient

  • Ginger helps ease digestive discomfort and provides natural anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Cayenne has antioxidants that support the lungs, and the capsicum thins mucus, allowing you to expel it easier.  It will help with sinus congestion and coughs.
  • Onions also help remove phlegm and are extremely high in antioxidants, which help the body fight free-radicals and boost the immune response.
  • Horseradish will not only clear mucus but has a mild natural antibiotic effect.
  • Rosemary has the ability to disarm harmful toxins and flushes them from your body.
  • Sage fights against several infection-causing bacteria and soothes pain from sore throat.
  • Organic Apple Cider Vinegar contains a host of vitamins, beta-carotene, pectin, and vital minerals such as potassium, sodium, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, chlorine, sulphur, iron, and fluorine.  It also has malic acid, which is very helpful in fighting fungal and bacterial infections. It’s been known to be helpful in ailments such as constipation, headaches, arthritis, weak bones, indigestion, high cholesterol, diarrhea, eczema, sore eyes, chronic fatigue, mild food poisoning, hair loss, high blood pressure, obesity, and a host of many other ailments.  Beware – Not all apple cider vinegars are created equal!  The best type of apple cider vinegar to use is one made from cold pressed, organically grown whole apples, to which no chemicals or preservatives have been added, which contains the “mother of vinegar”, and is not pasteurized.

Cold Kicker Ingredients:

¼ cup ginger root, freshly grated
¼ cup onion, freshly chopped
¼ cup horseradish, freshly grated
¼ cup fresh rosemary, chopped
¼ cup fresh sage leaves, chopped
4 cloves of garlic (but I use 6)
2 Tbsp. ground cayenne pepper
organic apple cider vinegar to cover (Bragg’s is a great brand)

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a quart size mason jar and fill to the top, leaving 1 inch headspace.
  2. Shake daily for 2-4 weeks, then strain, squeezing out all the liquid.
  3. Rebottle and use 2 tablespoons as needed.

How to Store: If you get all the particles out, you should be able to store this on the counter or in the pantry for up to 6 months.  To play it safe, I keep mine in the refrigerator.

We happen to like the taste, so we drink it straight up.  We’re pretty hardcore.  Well, not so much…it just tastes like spicy salad dressing.  One of these days I’m going to try it on chicken.  Some people mix it with a hot cup of water and honey.  Others have been known to add it to chicken broth.  It works either way.

This has been a guest post by Jackie from Clifton Park, NY
Find out more about the KCL Contributor Network!

Leave a Reply

12 thoughts on “Natural Cold Kicker Remedy: Not for the Faint of Heart”

  1. I made a cold remedy with garlic last winter and couldn’t convince anyone to take it. Not sure if I am willing to try this or not.

  2. Laura Jean says:

    How often do you take this?

    • Anonymous says:

      You take 2 tablespoons as needed. You can mix it with warm water and honey or even with chicken broth. My husband and I use it when we need it and it really works for us.

      Now if I could just find a home remedy that gets rid of cold sores then I’ll be all set.

  3. Onions also have fever-reducing/anti-inflammatory properties. You can actually cut one in half to put in your kid’s socks and it will take the fever down. This totally works!

  4. All of your cold remedies sound great but the best way to AVOID catching a cold is to wash your hands frequently. Never touch your face, rub your eyes or nose before thoroughly washing your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds in very warm water. If you do have a cold have the courtesy to wash your hands after cleaning your nose or rubbing your eyes. And last but not least, make it a habit to always wash your hands as soon as you get home despite where you have been. Note: Always carry antibacterial hand sanitizer to use when soap and water are not available. Touching your face with dirty hands contributes to acne.

  5. This sounds great when we actually get sick, but that doesn’t happen much around here since we started doing what the chiro recommended. A full nasal flush day and night for those who can stand it (adults) and just a quick saline rinse a few times a day for the kiddos. We also add Vit D and Vit C and when we know we have been exposed a little echinacea.

  6. You can also try tea tree oil. It has a ton of uses. For a cold you can add it to a vaporizer of make a steam bath. You only need a few drops. Its a natural antiviral and antiseptic so it helps to kill the bacteria in your sinuses. Another one of my favorite uses is for the treament of lice. You can add it to your shampoo.

    • Candra Long says:

      My mom is a tea tree oil fanatic! She always has it in her shampoo, body wash, everything lol. Anytime I have to use hers, I know I’ll be getting a tingly cooling effect. Smells nice though, and really does work for a lot of things.

  7. That stuff never worked for me but worked for a friend of mine. Last week I started to get sick with a sinus infection and my doc couldn’t get me in for 3 days… by that point I would of been so sick I would of been in the hospital (I have asthma)… so I asked the doc if he could tell me anything that I could get at the health food store (he believes if it was good enough 100 years ago why not now lol)… told me to look for echinacea and a nasal spray… found Esberitox and Xlear. OMG they worked lol… the owner of the store helped me a lot and even said if it happened again to try Oil of Oregano- which I have another friend that swears by it. So a few other ideas for colds and sinus infections…

  8. Kate Maddox says:

    Sounds like what I’d use to season a stew! Yum!