several alternative treatments available to help prevent flu infection or to
alleviate its symptoms once infection has occurred.
acupuncture and acupressure are purported to strengthen the body’s natural
immune response, thus helping prevent the flu. If you already have the flu,
stimulating different pressure points can relieve some of your symptoms,
including nasal congestion, headaches, and back and muscle pain.
essential oils—eucalyptus, peppermint, and tea tree—can be used with steam
inhalation treatments to ease nasal congestion. To treat a sore throat, a drop
of tea tree oil can be mixed into a glass of warm water and gargled. Make sure
not to swallow the mixture.
Herbs and Supplements
infusion of the herb boneset (Eupatroium perfoliatum) is said to relieve fever
and body aches. Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) and elderberry (Sambucus
nigra) infusions can be effective against chills and other flu symptoms.
The herbs Echinacea and goldenseal have long been used to
boost the immune system. Teas made
with cinnamon, cayenne, and ground ginger are believed to relieve sinus
popular herbs and natural remedies for treating flu symptoms when brewed in tea
doses of vitamin C (two to three
grams per day for adults) may help prevent the flu by boosting the immune
system. Zinc supplements have also
been found to be beneficial to improve the body’s immune system.
medicine called Oscillococcinum is sometimes used in homeopathic treatments both
to prevent influenza and relieve its symptoms. Other common homeopathic medicines
for the flu include Gelsemium (Gelsemium sempervirens) for chills, headache,
and stuffy nose; and Bryonia (Bryonia alba) to treat headache and muscle pain.
hot bath can ease the pain of headache and sore muscles and relieve congestion.
For high fevers, a long, cool bath can aid in bringing down the body’s core
temperature. Steam inhalation is a common hydrotherapy treatment for the flu
and is used to open nasal passages and improve breathing.
your sinuses with warm, salty water is an effective way to relieve nasal
congestion. Neti pots, which can be found at your local pharmacy, are small
containers designed specifically for nasal irrigation. They are usually made of
ceramic or molded plastic, and are affordable. To use a neti pot, you fill the
pot with warm salt water (or saline solution which can be bought at a
pharmacy), tilt your to the side (over a sink or bowl), and place the spout of
the pot in the upper nostril, pouring the water gently in. The water will flow
through your nasal cavity and out the lower nostril.