Natural Lifestyle

Natural Cold Remedies

Natural cold remedies - neti pot

It’s that time of year again! Sniffly noses, coughing, sore throats, muscle aches… sound familiar? Instead of running to the cold and flu aisle, I like to first treat myself with the following natural cold remedies when I feel the first signs of excessive sneezing or a tickly throat.

Neti Pot

I didn’t grow up using a neti pot. In fact, I didn’t really know what a neti pot was until a few years ago when I got curious and googled how to use them! Neti pots can help alleviate nasal congestion so they’re especially useful when you’re suffering from a cold, allergies, or a sinus infection (Web-MD).

If you’re unfamiliar with neti pots, check out this video how-to. Needless to say, the concept of pouring a warm saline solution into one nostril and draining it out the other was a little foreign to me at first, but after trying it a few times I understand the appeal. It basically feels like I’m cleaning out the insides of my nose – and for someone who clearly enjoys cleaning, it’s a satisfying process.

Here is the neti pot and salt that I use. Don’t forget to use these with either distilled water or water that has been boiled for 3 minutes then cooled to a warm but comfortable temperature.

Essential Oil Diffuser

Natural cold remedies - diffused essential oils

I could dedicate a full post about the health and wellness benefits that can be gained from diffusing essential oils, but I’ll focus today only on the benefits related to preventing and treating sickness.

  1. Air Purification – Certain essential oils have air purification properties. Diffusing these can help keep the air in your home/room cleaner for those who are trying to stay healthy! For a list of essential oils that can help purify the air in your room, check out The Ceyenne Room.
  2. Clear Nasal Passages – Essential oils like Eucalyptus, Peppermint, or Thyme when diffused can actually help clear sinuses. For this to work most effectively, sit closely to the diffuser and breathe deeply.
  3. Sleep AssistanceLavender has a calming effect. When diffused in your bedroom at night it can help lull you to sleep (especially important when you’re feeling under the weather!).

(Note: The typical ratio of oil to water in a diffuser is about 5-6 drops of essential oil to half a cup of water)

If you sign up for my newsletter before Friday, I will send you a list of links to beautifully designed diffusers that I’m currently coveting. I recently purchased this Stadler Form JASMINE Aroma Diffuser – it works well and it’s minimalist design is easy on the eyes.


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 Diluted Oregano Oil

Natural cold remedies - diluted oregano oil

Fair warning: drinking diluted oregano oil is not for the faint of heart. This stuff is potent, it burns, and it is not necessarily the easiest (for me) to take down, however it really does clear up my sinuses when I do!

It is recommended to dilute ONE drop (seriously you only need one) in a giant glass of water before drinking, however sometimes I really can’t handle the slow sipping of oregano oil water so I will put a little drop on my finger, dab my finger on the back of my tongue then chug a giant glass of water.

For more benefits of oregano oil check out this post by Dr. Axe.

Loose Leaf Organic Tea

Natural cold remedies - organic loose leaf tea

Perhaps the most obvious cold remedy is regularly drinking high quality tea. Ginger, mint, and lemon seem to be the magical trio that is most commonly recommended for soothing colds and other sicknesses.

I recommend buying loose leaf organic teas – organic is better for you and loose leaf tea is better for the planet (#zerowaste).

While I love the convenience of dried herbal tea, my favorite thing to do when I am sick is to crush a small bit of ginger root in the bottom of my teacup, fill it with hot water and add lemon juice and honey. It never fails to calm my throat and bring me comfort!

Natural cold remedies - neti pot, diluted oregano oil, essential oil diffuser, loose leaf organic tea

If you or your family is being plagued by sickness (or you are trying your best to avoid it!), I recommend also reading this post on 12 Important Places to Clean During Flu Season.


Disclaimer: While these natural cold remedies have helped me time and time again, I am not a doctor and therefore not qualified to deliver medical advice. Please consult with your doctor before creating your own cold remedy regimen.

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  • Reply
    March 1, 2017 at 11:33 am

    Ok! Love this post 🙂 I used to take oregano oil for my dermatitis, but unfortunately can’t do it while pregnant. I used an already somewhat diluted formula from NOW and would put a dropper full in a shot glass with a little water, throw it back, then chase with OJ or a full glass of water. It was still pretty killer, but the taste went away fast.

    • Reply
      March 1, 2017 at 12:09 pm

      I’m going to have to ask you where you get the diluted formula… chasing with OJ is a great idea!

  • Reply
    Aubrey Ballard
    March 3, 2017 at 9:02 am

    I’ve been hearing so many great things about Oregano oil, and now I know why! Just getting over a two-week cold, and my neti pot was a life savor! 🙂

    xo, Aubrey

    • Reply
      March 3, 2017 at 7:58 pm

      I’m glad that your neti pot helped! I hope you get well soon <3 🙂

  • Reply
    Heather Short
    March 18, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    Great content Kait! I love reading these blog posts!

    • Reply
      March 22, 2017 at 10:58 am

      Thank you Heather! Your support means a lot <3

  • Reply
    2018 Sustainable Gift Guide - A Clean Bee
    November 15, 2019 at 11:12 am

    […] Plant Therapy Essential Oils – this starter kit of oils from Plant Therapy are produced from organic plants, without chemicals, and by using a large amount of plant material such that the final product is extremely concentrated. I like to diffuse oils to scent my home, I add a few drops to your wool dryer balls to scent your laundry, scent DIY cleaners, or even help battle a cold. […]

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