Friday, August 5, 2011

Brief blog break

Hi, all! I'll be taking a break from blogging until Wednesday of next week. I'm battling a stupid head cold--and you know how much fun hot tea and chicken soup are when it's 106 degrees outside!

Grr. Arrgh.

So, tell me: what is your most favorite/least favorite/weirdest etc. folk remedy for colds? I didn't believe the "put Vicks (tm) on your feet and it will stop you from excessive nighttime coughing" trick until I tried it. It definitely works for me. Downside: it requires the wearing of socks, another thing I don't exactly want to do when the temperature is 106 degrees outside.

What do you do to treat or ease symptoms of a cold? Comment box is open and waiting!

22 comments:

Tobins said...

I hate wearing socks to bed in any weather, Erin, but I also have had great success with the Vicks (tm) on the feet trick, so I get in bed (on the bed, really) with a towel under my feet and have hubby put the salve on for me. I do this before I'm ready to go to sleep and then the salve soaks in enough that I can get under the covers without ruining them. In this weather, getting under the covers may not be necessary at all. At least, that's been true here, even with the air conditioning on, and I know it's hotter there.

Tobins said...

Oh, yeah... I hope you feel better soon!

Siarlys Jenkins said...

Get well soon. Nobody moderates a good provocative discussion like you do.

When I feel the first creeping symptoms of a cold, I begin taking massive doses of Vitamin C, sometimes accompanied by smaller doses of Vitamin B complex. If it gets worse, I drink lots of juices, eat salty crackers or handfuls of dry cereal to scrape the back of my throat clean, and try to get a lot of sleep.

It doesn't prevent infection, but does seem to shorten the duration, and sometimes limit the severity of symptoms or the extent of the invasion.

Deirdre Mundy said...

When I'm not pregnant-- I do the humble hot toddy. Tea, Whiskey or Brandy, lemon and honey. Works like a charm.

My Indian friend in college had a "boil pepper into a sludge, add enough milk and sugar so you don't gaga, drink it down and then pass out and sweat out your cold" remedy. I don't know her exact recipe, but it was pretty miserable to take. However, it did cure you in about 8 hours. I still prefer the hot toddies.

My Polish roommate had the following, but I don't recommend it to you if you want to leave the house:
Slice up 3-4 cloves of garlic. Place slices on a piece of bread (I prefer pumpernickel for this) Eat the bread and raw garlic. It works, BUT you smell really bad for a couple of days. Once I tried this remedy and then went to daily Mass in the college chapel. The priest asked me to please move to the back row, because my odor was turning his stomach. (He was a friend, so I was embarrassed, but not angry.) At the time it was particularly humiliating because another friend had brought along a cute physics major he wanted me to meet, and I was the girl with dragon breath! :P My unsympathetic roomate said "well, clearly God didn't want you to marry HIM." (which turned out to be correct, but still...)

Finally, this used to be a folk remedy for coughs, but now has been proven to work better than cough syrup---

Take one TBSP of raw honey.

Anyway, I still vote for the hot toddys... they take a bit longer to work, but they're pleasant going down!

thomas tucker said...

Dayquil during the day, Nyquil at night.
Get well soon!

KC said...

Add sliced ginger to water. Make a very, very strong tea; add honey and drink as often as you can. Clears sinuses and helps with coughs. Hope you feel better soon.

Rebecca in ID said...

The thing that really works for cutting the duration, for me, is a *lot* of hot drinks, so hot that it almost burns. The heat seems to just kill off whatever is trying to culture in the throat. I'm with Deirdre: hot toddies are great because besides the heat, you get the alcohol and the acid lemon which also tend to kill bacteria. Fresh ginger is also great esp. with citrus. Also, raw garlic crushed into chicken broth (homemade if possible). Once I started taking hot drinks very seriously, my colds stopped lasting for more than a day.

A suggestion: while you're lying around getting better, pick up the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series. Those books make you *want* to drink hot tea in very hot weather. I don't know how the author does it, but he does.

bearing said...

Garlic-lemon tea. Crush a clove of garlic, steep in hot water, add LOTS of lemon juice and LOTS of honey. Sip slowly. Don't drink the clove.

Kathy Schiffer said...

My grandmother, circa 1954, useded to cut up a pile of yellow onions and fill my grandfather's socks with them. Then, we wore the oversized socks around the house and, at nightfall, wore them to bed. I don't know-- I suppose we absorbed something through the skin, akin to the Vicks-on-feet remedy.

Nowadays, I'm a Dayquil/Nyquil kind of girl.

Charlotte (Waltzing Matilda) said...

I don't know Bearing... sounds like Deirdre's Polish friend would tell you to drink the clove! :)

I have no help to offer other than a recipe for Healing Cabbage Soup which actually has a lot of garlic in it, so maybe there it something to the garlic thing!

Charlotte (Waltzing Matilda) said...

"is" something... not "it"

Red Cardigan said...

Love these suggestions! :) I have to smile at the idea of the "onion socks," though...

SisterPatricia said...

Zicam. Works every time.

The Cottage Child said...

Saline sinus flush, cool water, ginger ale, Vitamin C in the crystalline form (much of the research that dismisses C as an aid in passing a cold is done on other forms - it matters), an early morning walk, before it's 487 F outside. I've found that summer colds are far and away the worst, often lingering for two to three weeks - when I do the above, it's five days or fewer with less severe symptoms. Feel better!

Oh, hot soaks with Dr. Bronners peppermint soap - I don't think this does anything for the actual virus, but it makes your bones feel better - the peppermint and steam work on your sinuses, and make your body feel nice and cool when you get out of the tub.

Sleeping Beastly said...

Several squirts of goldenseal tincture in hot water several times a day. Tastes vile and cures colds.

Dawn Farias said...

I've tried the raw garlic and I'm agreed that it is way too strong of a remedy. Not even sure it worked as a remedy!

LOCAL raw honey is good for battling those things that bother you in your immediate environment. Any raw honey, not necessarily local, has immune boosting properties. I've never had apparent success with it but I recommended it to my FIL's wife and it cleared up a cough that had been bothering her for a while. Now they think I'm a folk remedy genius!

I really like the idea of the garlic tea with honey. Good luck, Erin!

Katie said...

I apologize that it is something hot, but Chik-fil-A chicken soup has always helped me. I had a summer cold a few weeks ago here in Florida. I feel your pain.

texasmama said...

EmergenC Immune Defense packets, or anything that has some elderberry in it...you can get the emergenC immune defense (has to be that one, not any other) on amazon, in t he organic sections of grocery stores and whole foods...My husband (who doesn't believe in taking anything prophylactically takes one of these packets every day if one of the kids gets a cold or if it is cold and flu season - and he has avoided some real nastiness. I kind of pooh-poohed the naturalness of it, but I must say it seems to be working for him!
elderberry - even our MD pediatrician recommended it to us.
Hope you feel better soon.

Patrick said...

The only thing that's ever helped me is Yukon Jack. At 120 proof, it kills germs and relieves lots of pain. Of course, it also make me sweat, which I consider a plus if I'm ill: but I'm not exactly in 106 degree weather when I'm doing that.

LarryD said...

I see Sister Patricia has been by. How nice of her!

Oh - I've tagged you in a meme. Hope you're feeling better!

Kimberly Margosein said...

I have found out that starting my day with Nyquil and Ambien works. When I awake, I take another. I get about 30-36 hours of sleep, and sleep it off. Obviously with your responsibilities this is easier said than done.

Alice said...

My mother would cut up a clove of garlic and tape to the soles of our feet with a bandaid. You'd wake up with garlic breath and I hated it, but she seemed to think it worked.