Cold Remedies and Folk Medicine Cures

Last Modified on Feb 25, 2015

About Common Cold Symptoms

A cold is a viral infection of the nose and throat that's relatively harmless but causes the irritating symptoms of sneezing, runny nose, sore throat, coughing, and congestion of the chest and sinuses. The common cold can be the result of any one of a number of viruses, which can vary the symptoms from a chest cold to a stubborn, bad cold.

Being an airborne virus, it is very easy to catch a cold. All the sneezing and coughing sends infected water particles into the air, easy to be inhaled and spreading the cold further. Vaccination is difficult as the number of viruses causing colds is high with a large number of mutations occurring each cough and cold season. Hand washing and face masks are good measures for prevention, though perhaps not always feasible.

Best Cure for a Cold

No cure for the common cold? Well there are at the very least some very uncommonly good home remedies for cough and cold symptoms here at Earth Clinic! Our most popular remedy for a cold is Jean's Famous Tomato Tea, recipe below; and many users also suggest apple cider vinegar, baking soda, zinc, garlic, and a wide variety of other natural antibiotics and home cures for fighting off your cold.



Print Print facebook twitter youtube

Most Popular Colds Remedies:

Apple Cider Vinegar27
Hydrogen Peroxide in the Ears13
Vitamin C6
Carol's Hot and Spicy Drink5
Oregano Oil5
Gargling With H2O24
Hydrogen Peroxide Sniffing Method!3

User Reviews

Table of Contents

Jean's Famous Tomato Tea   0  0   

Jean, from Wisconsin sent us this remedy on May 30, 2003. After drinking this recipe hot, writes Jean, "Your sinus congestion will disappear REAL fast. All these ingredients not only work on the immediate symptoms, but add plenty of vitamin C to fight a cold, and garlic to fight infection.

Recipe: Add 1 cup tomato juice, 1 tsp chopped fresh garlic, 1/2 tsp of hot sauce, 1 tsp lemon juice, and a pinch or two of celery salt for flavor. Heat ingredients and drink hot."

EC: Read the considerable reader feedback (130 plus emails) on Tomato Tea here, including Jean's updated remedy!

Apple Cider Vinegar   27  0   

Posted by Mrsg (Fl , Usa ) on 11/22/2013

[YEA]  My daughter was suffering from a bad cold and losing her voice. I gave her two TBS of ACV in a glass of water. Within a few hours she said her nose was clearing up and was feeling less aches and pains associated with the cold. By next morning all symptoms were gone.

Posted by Helen (Memphis, Tn) on 10/04/2013

[YEA]  Lots of allergy-related sinus congestion lately... But yesterday morning I woke up feeling like I was beginning to get a cold- I started sneezing, my nose was running, my throat and lungs felt scratchy and inflamed, and I started coughing. By the evening I knew I was doomed. Late last night I poured approx 2 tbsp ACV in a glass, added water, and chugged it. This morning, I did it again, then again at lunch, and again this evening.

I haven't sneezed at all today, no runny nose. I coughed only a couple of times this morning (over 12 hours ago).

Around noon I felt better, and now, 24hrs after the initial dosage, I feel significantly better. I still have sinus congestion; the feeling in my lungs is still (faintly) there. I'll continue with the ACV...Amazing!

Posted by Singingsamba (New York City, New York, Usa) on 02/12/2013

[YEA]  ACV curing cold: I am a singer and came down with a swift, debilitating case of laryngitis. I had been reading EC's postings because of another issue and was reminded of the benefits of ACV. After going to the ENT and obtaining a prescription of antibiotics, I thought I would first try ACV to help cure this thing before taking yet another round of antibiotics. ACV is the ONLY THING that actually broke up the mucus in my throat, allowing me to breathe easier, speak and sleep more comfortably. I feel better after drinking it and am looking forward to the continued benefits of ACV. My singing voice will return soon, I am sure. I take 2 TBS/3 times a day in about 8 ounces of cold water. I use a straw to protect my teeth. The taste doesn't bother me but you can add 1 teaspoon of raw honey and squeeze some lemon in there if you prefer. Thank you EC and to everyone who has shared their experience!

Posted by Itsnotme (Woolgoolga, NSW) on 05/04/2012

My 2 year old daughter has been hit pretty hard with a virus that is clogging up her nose, giving her a fever every night and clagging up her eyes so they stick together with a yucky discharge. She is normally very healthy.

I am thinking about giving her Apple cider vinegar and honey. Is this recommended for someone so young? Is there anything else recommended for her? Thank you for your time.

Replied by John
La Mesa, Ca

When I hear of eyelids sticking together, I immediately think "pink-eye" , which is easily and quickly treated by antibiotics. If that's what it is, it is very infectious, so be careful - just my opinion - best wishes to you.

Posted by Karyn (Rexburg, Idaho) on 03/19/2012

[YEA]  I just wanted to report that the ACV and lemon juice and hot water worked wonders for my nasty cold over the weekend! I really dislike the taste of ACV, but the health benefits are well worth a few moments of yuck. Thanks to everyone for their posts!

Posted by Natalie (Mesa, Az, Usa) on 01/13/2012

[YEA]  My 5yr old son and I had caught a nasty cold tht has been going around and has taking most around a month to kick. He had the worst chest congestion and cough. I gave him a 1 Tbs of apple cider vinegar and put it in 8 oz of apple juice he drank it with no problem, but he said mom I think this juice is rotten; haha, I added I little honey he couldn't tell the diff. it worked so well it was the only thing that would stop the cough no otc was helping..

Posted by Laura (Houston, Texas, Usa) on 12/17/2011

[YEA]  I had a terrible cold all week. Last night I couldn't stop sneezing and was blowing my nose nonstop for hours, despite having taken cold medicine. I knew there was no way I'd be able to sleep, so in desperation I looked at the suggestions here on earth clinic. I mixed 2 T. ACV & 1 T. Organic, unprocessed honey in 10 oz of water and drank it all at once. Within 1 hr I felt like I could go to sleep. I slept all night & woke up this morning breathing through both sides of my nose! I'm still a little congested, but will keep up the ACV & honey & water till this thing is out of me. Thank you Earth Clinic!

Posted by Jas (Winston Salem, Nc) on 10/04/2011

[YEA]  Hi guys, Well after reading the ACV remedies here I thought I'd try it for a cold and sore throat. I boiled water and in a cup added the hot water with a little cold, half teaspoon Cayenne Pepper, squirt of honey, and tablespoon of Organic Apple cider Vinegar. I gargled first for the sore throat, this as a miracle and sore throat was gone by the next morning. For the cold you will drink the concoction and feel relief within 24 hrs. Nature's miracle. You need to cure the virus not treat just the symptoms which is why natural alternative therapies are the way to go instead of phamarceutical!

Posted by Mary (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) on 09/19/2011

[YEA]  Started with sore throat yesterday morning, followed by body chills and runny nose this morning. Was blowing my nose practically non-stop until I suddenly remembered the EC site for natural remedies. Saw the many positive comments about ACV, decided to give it a go - mixed 2 tblsps of organic unfiltered ACV with 1 and 1/2 tbsps of honey in a mug of warm water (about 400 ml), and within 10 minutes my nose started to clear up. I kid everyone not! Will continue to dose myself with ACV and honey for the next few days until the cold clears up. Thanks, EC and everyone, for your helpful posts.

Replied by Ladyone191
Stafford, Va

[YEA]   Thank you, my daughter came home from work not feeling well. Her nose was running, fever and all over ache feeling. She said it did not taste good but drank it anyway. Within half hour she felt a little better. Thank you again, I will put this in my little book.
Replied by Mila
Welland, Ontario

[YEA]   My husband is fighting his cold/flu already for 3 wks. He is now finishing his antibiotics, but he is still coughing and his voice is still not completely back, so he is thinking to start different antibiotics prescribed by his doctor. Sure enough, I am getting his cold myself. My nose was running a lot, I couldn't sleep and felt really sick. Because I am taking heart medication "Pradax", I couldn't take any Cold-FX, so I started with Echinacea, but without any improvement. Then I read on this site about ACV remedy for running nose. It is amazing! Within 15 min. my running nose stop. That was around noon time. The whole afternoon I was fine, but to make sure, I drank again 1/2 a cup of warm water with ACV and honey before I went to bed. I was able to sleep well, just in the morning the cough is starting to bother me. I am going to continue with ACV remedy and I want to try some remedy with red onion and honey for my cough.... I wish my husband would try it too.

Posted by Jacksparrow (Aiken, Sc) on 08/31/2011

[YEA]  Last year our family was given an apple cider vinegar recipe from an older couple to use for colds, sore throats and I'm now using it to help build my immune system. Fill a coffee cup with boiling water, add 1 Tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar, 1 Tablespoon of local honey and 1/4 tsp. of cinnamon to make a hot drink. It tastes a lot like hot apple cider. It really helps with colds and upper respiratory colds.

Replied by Engchin
Penang, Malaysia

Can kids/infants take this remedy? 7mths old and above, my baby been in and out of hospital for bronchiolitis due to cough and flu and my 3.5 yr has bouts of cough and flu on and off...
Replied by Morgan
Pearland, Texas

The taste of all three ingredients is not bad at all. I tasted it before my boyfriend did and it was not bad at all. And I am very picky and skeptical about taste. He is drinking it too and not complaining. I also have him taking vitamin c, powder form. And Alka Seltzer Plus day and night medicine. So we will see how he feels tomorrow morning and how he sleeps tonight. Thanks for these remedies. I know when I am sick with a cold, I will try this remedy.

Posted by Elizabeth (Longwood, Fl) on 06/10/2010

[YEA]  Thank you, thank you for providing this website. The apple cider vinegar for head colds worked for me and provided a good night's sleep. I had tried two other over the counter cold remedies that had no effect. Ten minutes, 2 tbl of acv and 8 oz of warm water did the trick. Woke up this morning and added some tea for colds to the mix. Yeah!

Thank you so much!

Posted by Cw949 (Minot, Nd, USA) on 11/01/2009

[YEA]  I can't believe it but it's true.

I had the flu and a cold followed.

I read about the (2) teaspoons of Apple Cider Vinegar and 8oz water mixture and decided to follow it to clear up my sinus infection and stuffy nose.

I drank four doses in a 12 hour period and felt the relieving effects shortly after the first dose.

At the end of the day, my sinuses dried up, I was breathing better, my cough lessened and I could taste.

I'm now going to take one dose at the beginning of each day for healthy maintenance.

Replied by Piper
Toronto, On

[YEA]   Daughter aged 6 had a cold, so I put ACV and water in a mug (1:1) with tsp of honey. About 1/4-1/3 cup of liquid in total. Warmed in microwave. Gave to her on tsp as much as I could get her to take. Next day cold much better, so a bit more and the next day the cold was gone. Other daughter, aged 8 caught the cold. Same mixture but I gave her the dose with the squirt syringes you get with medicine so I could give her a bit more. Next day there was no cold.
Replied by Muniba
Urbandale, Iowa

Please, do not use microwave to warm ACV and honey, never

Posted by Justin (Kirksville, MO United States) on 06/10/2009

[YEA]  This apple acv cure is an excellent cure indeed. My uncle taught me the worst tasting remedy I've ever heard of, but it'd cure colds in no less than 3 days. My mom used to give it to me, and I had to plug my nose in order to even drink the stuff down, but it was amazing. What to do is, you throw an entire clove of garlic (not just a small piece, but the whole clove, peeled of course) into a 1 quart jar (one whole clove of garlic per quart), or even a 2 quart would work. Fill the jar the rest of the way with ACV, and then, you put the lid on the jar, and let it sit on the counter overnight to start the fermentation process. We would sometimes let it ferment for two days, but no more than that usually to keep bacteria from growing. After that, you can store it for a very long time in the refrigerator to use when needed, leaving the cloves of garlic in it. Then, when a cold would strike, we'd put about 4oz of the liquid into a coffee cup, and then microwave it for about 30 seconds (to warm it up a little, but not make it too hot), then to get rid of the acidity and horrible taste of ACV, put 2 tablespoons of honey, and then about 1 tablespoon of lemon juice (all of which you can get at a grocery store). Vuala. We call it "Natures Pennicilin" because it has just enough bacteria from the mother of vinegar, plus it pulls the antioxidants from the garlic, and honey helps it spread through the body quicker as it's good for you, and the tablespoon full of lemon juice is enough to flavor it almost to a tea-like state, as well as an excellent source of ascorbic acid (vit c). I had a cold and tried the onion thing recently... and was still sick for a week. Tried the ACV cure on a wart, and it worked overnight... Amazing how ACV can work for the entire body. :)

EC: Thank you! Cross-posted to the ACV recipes page...

Replied by Kirsty
Estepona, Spain

[YEA]   I tried this on day two of my cold and I am already feeling the benefits. My left sinus was completely blocked yesterday and I it is clear today. Will continue with it until I am back to 100%. Thank you!
Replied by Steve
Toronto, Ontario

Be careful about microwaving any foods ! Nutrients are reduced/destroyed by microwaves. I now use my microwave strictly for sanitizing dish rags etc ...
Replied by Nna
Olympia, Wa, Usa

I agree about the harms of microwaving food particles specially when you want to use them to cure yourself. Low heat on the gas/electric burner is the best way to warm/cook things while keeping the nutrients intact! I used to not use low flame for lack of time/patience, but have since learned the error of my ways and try to cook on low when I can

Posted by Ellen (Ft. Stewart, Georgia) on 02/12/2009

[YEA]  I normally take vitamin c,e,& cod liver oil. My immune system is pretty strong. Rarely get colds or flu, but for the last 3 days I've contacted A bad cold. Terribly congested, and nose running constantly, it's worse during the day than at night. Didn't want to take antibiotics so came to your site (love it) and read the remedies for colds. I already know some of the health effects of acv, but didn't know it helped with colds, I took 2tbl spoons in warm water /w honey. OMG with in 30 minutes I was amazed, I was really congested and couldn't breath thru one nostril after I took it, my sinus cleared right up and my voice returned from that nasal sound to normal. I had taken a lot of OTC medicines and nothing worked, but acv is wonderful. I will be taking this regularly in the future. Thanks for posting the remedies Ellen

Replied by Sandra
Los Angeles, California

This article, based on science, states that getting a cold does not happen because of a weak immune system:
Replied by Sindee
San Diego, California

This article is highly suspect, probably written by someone in UK or Europe. I can go on but I for one don't give much credence to few science studies done on one ethnic/race of people from one general area.

next page


DISCLAIMER: Our readers offer information and opinions on Earth Clinic, not as a substitute for professional medical prevention, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult with your physician, pharmacist, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements or following any treatment suggested by anyone on this site. Only your health care provider, personal physician, or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs or diagnose your particular medical history.

Copyright © 2015 | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | About Us | Contact Us | Search