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The holiday hangover lingers far into January and February, compromising your immunity at the exact moment many cold and flu germs are lingering around every corner. While traditional over-the-counter medicines can alleviate a stuffy nose or achy bones, they simply mask the problem. 

But what's really going on is that our system is out of whack, imbalanced. The best defense against pesky seasonal illnesses is a healthy gut and fortified body filled with plant-rich superfoods plus a curated collection of powerful herbal infusions that can prevent the germs from taking hold. 

Below, a dozen herbs we are stocking up on to keep us outguessing cold-flu season. 

This powerful adaptogen helps your body to adjust to seasonal changes. It can lower your stress levels, essential to maintaining a healthy immune system. Additionally, Ashwagandha increases white blood cell production, helping to boost immunity and fight off germs.

Get It Here: Sakara Dark Chocolate Granola 

One teaspoon of this powerful immunomodulator contains 720 percent of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C—the powerful immune booster. Amla also stimulates blood circulation and improves liver function, so you can get those toxins moving and kindly escort them out of the body.

This herb is a natural expectorant, which induces coughing (in a good way) when you need to expel toxins and germs so you recover faster. Brew a tea from thyme sprigs or you drop some thyme essential oil in a hot bath to loosen mucus in the chest.

Licorice root
Licorice contains glycyrrhizin—a compound with extremely effective antiviral properties, which is proven to fight off influenza, as well as strains of the avian flu virus. Licorice is an expectorant and a demulcent that soothes mucous membranes and relieves symptoms of a sore throat and cough.

A well known immune booster thanks to its antibacterial properties, garlic can ward off not only vampires but the cold and flu as well. 

Get it Here: Liver-Loving Detox Elixir 

Cayenne pepper
This natural antihistamine brings the heat, and with it its natural cold-relieving powers. The capsaicin in cayenne pepper helps to stimulate circulation, sweating, as well as thin, built-up mucus in the nasal passages. Add a dash of cayenne pepper to warm water with lemon and maple syrup, sprinkle it in soups, or add it to your green juice for a serious detoxing, natural healer. 

Elderberry extract has been consistently tested and proven to shorten the duration of cold and flu symptoms by as much as four days due to its potent anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties. 

Basil helps reduce fevers and symptoms of cold and flu. Chewing on a few leaves of holy basil can relieve sore throat symptoms and a tea made of the boiled leaves will produce the same effect.

Warming the body from the inside out, this spice works to decongest by clearing mucus during a cold or flu. It also an anti-inflammatory. Boil some cinnamon sticks for a soothing tea, or add some organic cinnamon powder to any beverage.

Get It Here: Cinnamon-Mocha Latte

Frequently the key ingredient in over-the-counter vapor rubs, you can skip the fillers and purchase some pure eucalyptus essential oil. Inhaling the vapor of eucalyptus oil placed in boiling water can help clear respiratory passageways and sinuses.

A natural anti-inflammatory, painkiller, and diaphoretic (a compound that induces sweating), ginger is used to reduce fever, cold and flu symptoms, as well as indigestion, stomach ache, headache, and sore throat.

Get It Here: Carrot Ginger-Spiced Soup 

Valerian Root
Valerian is nature’s sedative that has been used for hundreds of years to soothe the nervous system and relieve pain. A cup of valerian tea will also serve as a natural, non-addictive sleep aid.

Get It Here: Sakara Sleep Tea 


More Healing Herbal Hits 

Our Beautifying Ingredients Guide 

How To Regenerate During the Coldest Season 


Filed Under: Well-being, Wellbeing

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