How to Keep the Common Cold at Bay with 7 Home Remedies

home remedies ride the fever for the common cold

We’ve all been there. You’ve got a big day of work ahead of you but you wake up and don’t feel ready to start the day. You’re sluggish. You have sinus congestion. You have a sore throat. You’re looking up home remedies.

You’re battling the common cold. 

It may not be as debilitating as the flu, but it certainly can make a busy day much harder to get through. 


Of course, you should do all of the standard things to take care of yourself. Stay hydrated. Get enough sleep. Eat healthy foods. While these things promote a healthy immune system, they don’t do much to help once the cold has already set in. By the time the common cold has reared its ugly head, you’ll need a bit more help than drinking water and eating healthy to reduce symptoms and be at your best throughout the day. 


7 Home Remedies for the Common Cold

If you feel the beginning symptoms of what you believe to be the common cold coming on, try these seven tips.


oysters zinc for common cold1. Consume More Zinc

Zinc might just be the key to staving off the common cold.

One reeeally extensive study found that subjects that had taken zinc supplements the day leading up to the development of their cold symptoms experienced less severe cold symptoms and stayed sick for shorter periods. 

The same study also found that those who took zinc supplements for at least five months typically fell ill less often. They took fewer days off work and were prescribed antibiotics less frequently. 

While this isn’t enough on its own to conclude that zinc is some kind of cure for the common cold, we do know for certain that zinc plays a critical role in your overall immune system health

How to Take Zinc to Remedy the Common Cold:

If you feel your cold symptoms coming on and want to up your zinc intake to try to fend off the worst of the symptoms, turn to these foods that are high in zinc:

  • Meat
  • Oysters
  • Other shellfish
  • Seeds & Nuts
  • Dairy 
  • Eggs
  • Whole Grains

So the next time you feel a cold coming on, consider downing a plate of oysters or a farm-style breakfast.


vitamin c for common cold2. Eat Vitamin C-Heavy Vegetables

Yes, eating your vegetables is one of our home remedies for conquering the common cold.

Vitamin C is referenced to as a vitamin that is critical to immune health and fighting back the sickness. Its effectiveness is often hotly debated in medical communities, but some studies show vitamin C to be an effective tool at specifically combating the common cold. 

One study examined vitamin C’s role in preventing and reducing symptoms from the common cold. The study featured 29 trial comparisons and more than 11,000 participants. 

The study found:

  • Adults regularly taking Vitamin C reduced the duration of colds by 8%.
  • Children regularly taking Vitamin C reduced the duration of colds by 14%.
  • At higher doses of 1 to 2 grams of Vitamin C per day, children saw their cold duration reduced by 18%.
  • Participants who consumed Vitamin C regularly reported lower severity colds. 

Those are some pretty convincing numbers. 

How to Get Your Vitamin C

To increase the amount of Vitamin C that you consume in preparation for a potential oncoming cold, consider eating these foods:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Green & Red Peppers
  • Spinach
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Winter Squash
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Citrus fruits

Loading up on these hearty vegetables (and fruits) is likely to help you reduce the length and severity of your cold!


drinking chicken soup for common cold3. Drink Chicken Bone Broth 

Hot soup has been one of the top home remedies of choice for the common cold and other ailments for a long time in many cultures. Chicken bone broth and chicken noodle soup are two popular choices. 

There’s certainly a therapeutic aspect to it. Thin soups and broths are easier on sore throats. They coat the throat as they go down, providing a soothing sensation. They are also easy to stomach for those who experience nausea, and make it easy for ill people to get something nutritional down.

But there might be more to bone broth than just the therapeutic effects.

Bone broth is extremely nutritious.

It contains zinc, which we have already established is an important nutrient for fighting the common cold, but bone marrow is a rich source of other nutrients as well, including:

  • Iron
  • Vitamins A and K
  • Fatty acids
  • Selenium
  • Manganese
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium

These nutrients — especially calcium and magnesium — have been shown to play a beneficial role in immune system health.

Chicken bone broth is a great choice in remedying the common cold for both its therapeutic effects as well as the nutrient-rich nature of bone marrow.


Home remedies for the common cold4. Let Your Fever Ride

Fevers are uncomfortable. When you have one, it’s natural that you would consider taking acetaminophen or other over-the-counter medicine to suppress the fever. Why suffer through it, right?

Well, there is a strong contingent in the medical community that advocates for “letting your fever ride,” so long as it doesn’t get to dangerous levels.

Recent studies have shown that letting your fever play itself out provides several benefits:

  • Enhanced immune-cell function
  • Promote antimicrobial activity

In fact, that same study showed almost no difference in outcomes for subjects that used acetaminophen compared to those that let their fever ride. 

If you have a fever you should consult with your doctor, especially if your fever is above 101℉. For low-grade fevers, letting it ride might help you to “burn away” the cold and let your immune system deal with it naturally.


honey lemon ginger tea for common cold5. Manuka Honey

This very special honey is produced by bees in New Zealand pollinating local manuka bushes. Manuka honey has been a hot topic in holistic wellness circles in recent years, due in part to recent studies that have shown that it may be able to help individuals suffering from a wide range of symptoms, many of which are associated with the common cold. 

The active ingredient, MGL (methylglyoxal), has been shown to be effective for treating excess mucus production and help you to calm a runny nose. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that make it an excellent choice for dealing with the aches and pains that come with a cold. 

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How to Take Manuka Honey to Remedy the Common Cold:

We recommend mixing some ginger, lemon, and cayenne pepper in with a cup of hot water. Next, stir one teaspoon of raw Manuka honey in to create a delicious, nutritious, and heartwarming super drink.


probiotic foods to remedy the common cold

6. Take Probiotics

Probiotics play a key role in many holistic health plans. As a preventative option, probiotics have been shown to improve immune health. Additionally, there are both long-term and short-term benefits of taking probiotics.

Taking them leads to an increase in “good bacteria” that have been shown to restore a natural balance to bacteria in the gut. In terms of the common cold, that could be helpful in treating nausea, upset stomach, or diarrhea that often come with a cold.

Good Sources of Probiotics to Remedy the Common cold:

  • Kimchi
  • Pickles
  • Kefir
  • Miso (soup)
  • Yogurt



7. Home Remedies for Common Cold: Essential Oils

Essential oils are another potent tool in the holistic health toolbox, especially when it comes to fighting off a cold. 

While different oils provide different benefits, there is a range of essential oils that can help you to sleep and rest more easily. These include:

essential oils to remedy the common cold


  • Lavender
  • Chamomile
  • Bergamot
  • Sandalwood

One study found that inhaling steam that contains the essential oil chamomile helped relieve cold symptoms. Another study found that melaleuca oil (tea tree oil) has antiviral properties. If the cold morphs into bronchitis, eucalyptus oil has antiviral and antimicrobial properties that can help to treat the condition.


8. (Bonus) Get Through Your Cold with CBD

Cannabis and CBD can help you manage the symptoms of your cold. The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD can alleviate aches and pains and can help you get a better night’s sleep. Some studies have also shown that CBD has antibacterial properties that may make it a critical tool in fighting antibacterial resistant bacteria strains in the future. CBD has also been shown to be effective in treating anxiety, which can commonly accompany illnesses and the stress that they produce.

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This fast-absorbing, lightweight body rub provides essential topical relief for aches and pains that come with a cold. It delivers a therapeutic blend of essential oils along with full-spectrum cannabinoids to leverage the power of the full hemp plant.

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