24-Hour Flu Remedies

chamomile flowers

UPDATE: This post was three years old and while we would still use these natural remedies for the flu, we rarely get sick, due primarily to a preventative regimen of supplements, lifestyle factors and sleep/stress reduction. Here are the supplements we take regularly to help boost immune health.

Natural Flu Remedies

We had our first bout with the seasonal flu this week, and from my experience, all the hype is very overblown. In the course of 3 days my husband and both kids have contracted, and gotten over the flu (it is possibly, but not confirmed as the H1N1 strain). They all had the three common symptoms being listed for this years flu:

  • Fever
  • Body Ache
  • Respiratory Symptoms

All three got over their flu within 24 hours, both kids fully recovering within 12. I figured I would share my remedies in case anyone else is interested.

What we did not do: swine flu shots, seasonal flu shots, Tamiflu, antibiotics, visit the ER, Tylenol, fever reducers, etc.

What we did do:

  • Hydration-At the onset of first symptoms, they all started drinking a lot of water, up to a gallon and a half that day in my husband’s case
  • Hot Tea and tons of Homemade Bone Broth-As hot liquids have been shown to stimulate the immune system and stop proliferation of the flu virus, they all continuously sipped hot herbal teas, homemade chicken soup and hot water with lemon juice and honey.
  • Vitamin C More and more evidence is showing that vitamin C is the ascorbic acid form can battle the flu and other viruses better than medication. For the kids, I started with 500 mg chewable doses and continued until they reached bowel tolerance (the point that it causes diarrhea) and then reduced to half doses every two hours. This amounted to about 3,000 mg total by the time they were symptom free. I continued 500 mg a day for several days to increase immunity. For my husband, I gave 500 mg every hour until bowel tolerance and half doses every hour after. This amounted to almost 5,000 mg for him by the time he was symptom free.
  • Homemade elderberry syrup 1 Tablespoon every hour for husband, 1/2 Tablespoon every hour for kids. This is very similar to Sambucol, which is sold nationwide.
  • Organic Apple Cider Vinegar with “the mother”-One Tablespoon in 8 oz water every three hours. This alkalizes the body and kills any yeast that can be feeding infection.
  • Removal of carbs and sugars from the diet until completely well-At the first symptom, all three were pulled off of carbs and sugars, which can feed infection. If hungry, they ate tons of soup, healthy forms of protein, vegetables, and vegetable smoothies.
  • Lots of rest. This one is pretty obvious during any illness

I purposely did not give fever reducing medicine to any of them. As with any illness, I carefully monitor temperature and don’t make any effort to bring it down until it hits at least 104 (which never happens for us). For anything less than 104, I simply use the regimen above. Fever is the body’s natural response to illness and is a sign that the infection is being fought by the body. Reducing the fever really is not necessary unless it gets to a dangerous level. Both kids had fevers in the 103 range, and without the aid of Tylenol or medication, fought the infection and kicked the fever in 12 hours.

Hopefully none of you will deal with any illness this year, but if you do, maybe some of this may help you too.

How do you keep from getting sick or remedy it naturally when you do? Share your tips below!

It Shouldn’t Be This Hard to Be Healthy…

Get free access to my ten handbooks & quick start guides to help you detox your home, become a master of home remedies, make beauty products from scratch, and conquer mealtime madness!

Yes! Let me in!

You May Also Enjoy These Posts...

Reader Interactions

Ever Wonder What Your Odds of Hormone Deficiency Are?

Get your FREE personalized results...
Take the Quiz!


Reader Comments

  1. I was trying to find your information on not taking the flu shot and why you disagree with them. Is there an article you can link me to? Thanks!

    • There are so many articles that dispel
      the myth of the flu vaccination. Go to NVIC.org for all of the info you could ever want on vaccinations, and why they are often a much bigger problem than disease. I think someone sent a link to you already, but I wanted to chime in. Flu shots don’t work! They cannot be effective, as each year, the flu morphs into a different strain from the past year, but the vaccinations were created on the old version. We do not have the technology to create an effective flu shot at this point. The flu is ahead of our game. Flu shots will however, cause inflammation, and damage your immune system, which sets up your body for a host of other issues and infections. This is one of those things, that makes you wonder how, and why, we buy into anything we are told by traditional medicine, and mainstream media. Luckily, the flu, like any virus, is both preventable and treatable. Natural Health advocates, and professionals NEVER get flu shots! This is just part of rejecting what doesn’t work, and that which does harm, and finding a better solution to an old problem. I love this site…

      • I have gotten a flu shot every year since 2007 and never got the flu. The past two years i did not, and have gotten the flu. Another friend treated her daughter for a “cold” naturally while the kids fever spiked between 101-103 for days before she took her to find out she had a double ear infection, double sinus infection and pnemonia. Careful with your worldly advice.

        • None of those things are influenza. The flu shot would not have helped your friend’s daughter. It’s important to understand that illness is going to happen. A flu shot is not a plastic bubble. No matter how many inoculations they develop, humans will forever have to occasionally stop to take care of ourselves and our children from time to time. Sites like this help us to do just that.

        • your immune system has been compromised by the previous flu shots.

        • My two months old is suffering from the flu and his nose is not running …which tea I can gave him for the cold? Need your help please

          • You did not conform it was the flu with the simple flu test any medical arena would have provided. While I agree with natural remedies listed that can relieve symptoms and shorten the flu duration .. If it lasted only a day you all did NOT have the flu!
            Karen RN BSN

          • It’s not the case the if you had flu for a day it’s not flu. The flu virus affects one cell in your body and if your body finds that cell in 5 minutes, one hour, 24 hours or 2 weeks and killed it off its still the flu.

          • You need to be very careful with infants/small children. Your child should be seen by his pediatrician and they will advise you on the best remedies that are safe. Saline drops can help with congestion but herbal teas are not for small children. The main thing is fluids and controlling the fever. You must be extremely careful when giving very small children any types of medicine, prescription or over the counter. I hope your little one is feeling better.

        • I’ve never had a flu shot and never got the flu.

        • I haven’t been sick in 20 years and I’ve never had any medications or FLU SHOTS. This year it was mandatory I get a flu shot now I’ve been sick as dog for ten days. Flu shot is crap and false sense of security.

        • Perhaps it is coincidence that you’ve gotten the flu 2 years in a row. I personally have never had a flu shot and guess what, I have the flu right now! I still don’t believe in the shot. I have only ever had the flu twice now and this second bout is not as bad as the first. Double ear, double sinus infection and pneumonia? It sounds as though she maybe COULD have used some advice then.
          I do say, it seems as though you’ve come here to argue the logic of natural healing and home wellness techniques. But perhaps you’ve come to blame someone for yours and your friends daughters unfortunate ailments? My best advice. Do what works for you. If you would like to work with something less natural than some good old fashioned orange juice, echinacea tea, lemon and honey… Let us know how it goes!

    • This sounds great! I’m sick right now and I have been doing some of the things you listed. I think I will try some of your ways today. Thanks

      • It seems that traditional western medicine only treats the symptoms, not the actual illness, so I’m giving this a shot in hopes that I can kick this flu pretty soon! Thank you for all the helpful information! 🙂

      • I have followed all of this religiously and I am still very sick on day three. I eat a very healthy 100% organic non processed diet and take supplements. I am miserable. Any further advice? 🙁

        • Hello Olivia are you still alive. If so, what happened.How did you get rid of it & how long did it take?

    • I wonder if this mom would be available to attend a funeral of a little one because the parents delayed getting medical attention. You don’t mention your children’s age but a child with a 103 degree temperature should be seen at an urgent care facility especially if they have diarrhea and/or vomiting. Please be careful using all “home remedies”. You don’t know if a child is sick enough to be in a hospital – dehydrated, etc. and any wasted time could mean the difference between life and death. The time delay is more critical the smaller the child. Even a delay of a few hours could be fatal. Please, if you have a small child do not delay seeking medical attention. Especially not 24 hours HOPEING a remedy will work. These remedies might be useful for a cold, etc. for an older child but PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, do not try to self-diagnosis. The flu this season is the deadliest on record and it is not even half way over the typical flu season. Sorry, just trying to help.

      • What Ive learned the past couple of years with my daughter getting the flu,she would be playing then down by an all the sudden fever over 101.I took her in to be tested,last year she had strep at the same time.Didnt give her tamaflu,that stuff is harsh on their tummies.But I did use motrin to keep it at bay,and lots of fluids,hot tea,apple cider with apple cider vinegar,yogurt,orange juice.this year she was down for a day.A fever to me is a cue to a problem.

      • bernedettes reply is not based upon any evidence. There is no guideline that states a temp of 103 requires urgen care. It feeds into the hysteria of parents who rush their children to the pediatrician with every cough or sniffle. This behavior crowds the pediatrician office or urgent care facilities and spreads germs unnecessarily.
        Also, we as moms should know if our kids are really sick. If they aren’t drinking and aren’t peeing, they are dehydrated.
        The flu, while it does have the potential to be devastating, requires good nursing care at home. A nose swap doesn’t change this. Treating with rest, fluids and some other home remedies is generally best. If there is a fever of unknown origin, evaluating the situation to determine the child’s need. Usually it is a virus.
        Please see American Academy of Pediatics guideline for fever. They no longer recommend treating the fever. Treat the child…if your child is too restless to sleep, perhaps Advil (my choice) or Tylenol are useful.
        Further, despite common belief, there is no evidence to suggest high fevers alone cause complication. A child that is lethargic and dehydrated may need antipyretics.

        • I have found that steeped parsley tea and apple cider vinegar every hour on the hour does wonders if you ever have an infection throughout your body. Did this once for an infection in my bladder and within three days, was totally gone. Didn’t have to wait around for antibiotics to take effect and felt better with in the first 3 hours. Also cut the cost of seeing a doctor to tell me what I already knew I had. Very inexpensive for the remedy as well. Just thought I’d share with others.

        • “We as moms?” Are you forgetting “Dads?” This is 2015 not Leave it to Beaver days.

          • My audience is 90+% moms and women. Certainly dads are important too, but most of my readers are moms and I write to them.

          • Mama,

            It’s sometimes debilitating to continue writing to the public when one gets negative feedback but the majority do welcome, appreciate and hope you continue on strong!

            Thank you!

          • I’m on my road to recover I got my apple cider vinegar and vitamin c and broth . I hope I’m better for work tomorrow .

        • You equate a fever of 103 with a being nothing more than a “cough or sniffle”? Are you insane? A small child with a fever of 103 is seriously ill.

      • I’ve been incapacitatingly sick for 3 days (sick overall for 5 day’s), and I found out I was positive for influenza B yesterday. Mind you, this is my second bout with the flu this season. Anyways, I was done feeling miserable, and stumbled upon this little gem last night. I started the super hydration, vitamin C, apple cider vinegar in tea Q3HR. I stared feeling better within a few hours. I’m going to continue following this regimen until I feel better. Thank you for your health wisdom. I think it would be prudent to add a disclaimer to only use these remedies for adults and children ages 10+. As mentioned the flu puts small children as well as the elderly at greater risk for death. Any moron who’s set on treating their small child with self diagnostic self remedies is endangering abs neglecting their child in addition to putting their child at risk for death. Please seek professional medical attention and speak to your doctor about incorporating these home remedies. Thanks again for this valuable info!

    • Does anyone know if coconut oil actually kills bacteria and viruses? I have the flu, and have coconut oil at home, please let me know if I should use it. I also take vitamin d, and an all natural general vitamin.

      • Coconut oil is naturally anti viral and antibacterial but it’s probably not the best first choice to use as a flu remedy. It can be taken on its own in very small quantities (~ 1 tsp) but it’s best to take it with food, as on an empty stomach any more than this can cause surprisingly severe indigestion.

  2. thanks for this!

  3. I take echinacea tablets twice a day when I start to feel a cold or a fever coming on, and sip hot tea…usually it stops a cold onset dead in its tracks and reduces an oncoming fever as well!

  4. Great info, thanks! I do some of this and also we take extra vitamin d, swallow garlic cloves and take grapefruit seed extract.

  5. These are great tips – I’m going to bookmark this for the future. Currently, the boyfriend and I use a “tonic” I made of garlic, white onions, jalapeno peppers (or hotter), horseradish root, and apple cider vinegar. I mince the food in a processor, pour ACV on top, and let it steep for two weeks. You’re supposed to drain it and just use the liquid, but I also use the bits of food as relish or in a soup. Works really well, just smells and tastes awful.

  6. I also gargle with warm salt water, and rinse my sinuses with saline solution, which help clean out anything that might get me sick, or cause seasonal allergies.

  7. One thing I’ve done for the last year is organic whole juicing (putting the produce in my blendtec instead of using a juicer. I’ve tried both ways and like the whole juicing much better. I’m still getting micronutrients) every day for breakfast. All of those raw nutrients really boost my body! I also include ginger in every juice. Just a little chub. I’m not a huge ginger fan, but it is a natural germ fighter. I also include chia seeds and coconut oil in all my juices. It just makes sense that a strong healthy body being fed all the nutrients it needs is harder to attack than one that is surviving on processed garbage. I’ve continued juicing and at 8 weeks pregnant I’m still not nauseous and I have more energy than I typically do when I’m pregnant. I feel a little run down instead of like sitting on the couch is more effort than I can handle. This is baby #6. Aside from the oregano oil, are any of these others not for pregnant women? I’m going to order that vitamin c you recommend.

    • High doses of Vitamin C (over 2000 mg), turmeric, cinnamon, and some other spices aren’t recommended while pregnant, and definitely check any essential oil to make sure it is safe.

  8. Hello,
    I am looking for your information of not giving your children vaccines….but I can’t seem to find it….can you please direct me….
    Thank you !

  9. can you tell me what age your kids are before you start them on supplements such as cod liver oil? also, what age you start the flu treatments? i have a 2 year old who has been under the weather and am wondering if any of these treatments are not good for his age.

    • I start FCLO at 3-4 months while still nursing and I give my 2 year old all of the above.

      • Wondering how you give FCLO to a 3-4 month old? Through breast milk? My son will be 4 months on Feb. 1st.

  10. I have a 10yr old that is only puking up everything, water everything for over 24+ hrs. NO fever, just stomach cramping, no diarrhea. Every time I give her fluid she pukes, should I try tea? All her fluids have been cool not warm

    • I”d try that, but I’d also call her doctor just in case to make sure it isn’t something like appendicitis. Is she having cramping in any particular place? Maybe also try probiotics with a tiny sip of water if she can keep it down.

    • Whenever I can’t keep anything down I use popsicles. They hydrate you slowly and you’re at least getting some sugar.

      • Sugar is the worst thing you can do while sick. it feeds the bad bacteria. Mama also advises against sugar.
        If, by sugar, what you are trying to do is nourish your body or give it some kind fuel, and you can’t keep anything down unless it’s sweet, make homemade honey/tea popsicles, using echinacea tea or elderberry tea, with lemon and honey, and don’t forget the GINGER – it actually really helps with nausea. ANYTHING except white sugar.
        Good luck

        • Correction, not ANYTHING… I better clarify. My meaning was any healthier sweetener like honey, maple, monk fruit, but no fructose. And of the three, Honey is best due to its healing properties.

          Since I’m writing, I’m just going to throw in this great article by Robert Lustig, sugar genius.

          • “My meaning was any healthier sweetener like honey, maple, monk fruit, but no fructose.”

            First, there’s nothing harmful about fructose except in very high doses. Second, fructose is present in honey:

            “With respect to carbohydrates, honey is mainly fructose (about 38.5%) and glucose (about 31.0%)”


        • Most importantly, sugar lowers the immune system! Sugar may feed the secondary microbes but it seems to me their relevance is related to compromised immune system.

          Natural anti-inflammatories like ginger & turmeric should provide pain reduction.

          • Yes I’m glad you added that part about immunity.
            I’ll also add that xylitol and stevia can be great subs for something sweet as well.

            Response to Steve about honey – honey was a suggestion that would be placed above sugar and below other healthier sweeteners. Sure it’s fructose as you say but it’s still metabolized differently than honey and has other beneficial properties. My point was that it’s better than sugar – some people need to make changes gradually: “sometimes the best remedy is the one you’ll actually take”, or “the lesser of two evils” may also apply when a person doesn’t have the kind of resolve that you do.

  11. the last time I was sick was about three years ago, and I found that drinking the gallon to a gallon and a half of water just wiped it out in two days. no more week of being sick, no lingering cough, etc!! Your other suggestions are awesome and I will try if needed! ACV sounds especially good!!! I used to get sick once a year, flu or cold. I also think that following my supplement regimen has tremendously boosted my immune system!!!

  12. I just bought the NOW brand ascorbic acid. Each serving = 2.5 g. How would you recommend taking this form of vitamin c when coping with flu symptoms? Would you stick to the recommended dose or double?

    • Personally, when I’m not pregnant, I take about 1/2 to 1 tsp every few hours until I hit bowel tolerance and then back down slightly and continue at that level until the illness is gone…

  13. When we start feeling sick with colds or flu, first its take chopped fresh garlic at the onset of syptoms. Then once in the morning and once again in the evening. If throat is sore, for 3 consective nights, just at bedtime, drink a glass of warm milk with a pinch of ground black pepper and a pinch of ground turmeric. Both help relive syptoms quickly.

  14. you mention avoiding all sugars and carbs in order to help the body heal and reduce inflamation, but what about the sugar in the elderberry syrup and the lemon water w/ honey you mentioned above? does the honey in the elderberry syrup have a potential to harm the immune system or does it not matter so much since the elderberry has such a positive effect?

    • Not all Elderberry/Sambucus uses honey to sweeten it. You can look at the ingredients to make sure it doesn’t have sugar. Personally I think honey has many healing properties and I wouldn’t worry about giving it unless you are 1 year or younger.

  15. Olive Leaf Extract and lots of raw garlic and ginger.

  16. Sunlight also kills the flu.

  17. Is everything else on this list safe during pregnancy? I wondered about the high doses of vitamin c…

  18. good ..even i am suffering from flue..not h1 n1 though..will implement this tricks..on myself…simple cold flue.

  19. The idea you mentioned about the fever thing is also a nice idea…..

  20. My husband and I are expecting our first child in a few weeks, and have been recommended by our pediatrician to get the flu shot, as infants have no immunity to the flu, and can die from serious complications of being exposed to the influenza virus. Neither of us believe in the flu shot for ourselves, and haven’t had one in years. We would rather build up our own immunities. However, when it comes to a susceptible infant, we are unsure. I don’t want to mess with the possibility of my baby getting deathly sick from the flu virus. What do you think about infants and exposure to the flu virus?
    Also, I noticed you stated that Oil of Oregano (which has been tremendously helpful in helping my husband’s sinus problems!) is not safe during pregnancy ,,,, what is the reasoning behind that? When I try to research it I can’t find anything. I only used it once on a very bad mouth infection while pregnant, and am now worried that I shouldn’t have!
    I appreciate your blog, and love learning from it every day! 🙂

    • Oil of oregano can trigger labor. That is one of the reasons that they don’t want you using it during pregnancy.

    • Whitney,

      I was told by a lactation consultant years ago that if I just breastfed my baby then that would be BETTER then getting the flu shot. I would do some more research on breastfeeding and how much it protects our babies. I BF all 4 of my kids and none of them got their first cold until after age 1 and I don’t hide my kids either. I also had them on a very very slow delayed vaccination schedule.

  21. I love the article, however; I NEED MY CARBS

  22. Hi, i have severe asthma and get the flu shot every year without fail, and almost every year i get the flu anyway, woke up with it today, hit me like a train, it required a doc visit because of its impact on my lungs. i am taking a lot of raw garlic and turmeric and manuka honey in milk along with freshly squeezed lemon juice, and lots of water, does anyone have any tips for chest mucus clearance, this is and will be my worst issue, it will lead to the inevitable huge repeated amounts of oral steroids that cause weight gain, rage, etc. i really hate the flu, i am missing out on seasonal fun and am back to work in a week and have loads to do beforehand, help please

    • I drink peppermint tea. It kills bacteria and clears mucus.

    • Organic ACV is awesome for thinning mucus. She said a tablespoon in water every few hours. I take a teaspoon in grape juice, much easier to take (though her way is prob more effective).

  23. My kids are 12& 116 lbs; 10 & 113 lbs and 9& 75 lbs.
    Are they able to take the Elderberry Syrup? It is Sambucus Black ultra concentrated 5000 mg per serving? Any dosing info you could sharer with me would be helpful or if I should not give them this.

    Thank you

  24. I love every part of this post, thank you for sharing, I’ve been at home with my little guy trying it all. My son is 2 1/2 would you recommend the oil of oregano only be applied topically?

  25. I supplement with extra C and D daily (along with my multi-vitamin) and I wash it all down with warm water with a teaspoon of cayenne pepper mixed in. I also pop a black seed with garlic capsule every day along with one bitter melon capsule. I only eat whole foods and I sweeten my one daily cup of coffee with Stevia. Otherwise I am a water drinker. No junk food, no processed food.

  26. I’m away at university and suffering from the flu, this looks like great help will definitely try all of this 🙂

  27. Do carrots, apples, and beets count as sugar? I was going to make a beet-carrot-apple soup since I have no real appetite and can sip it. What about raw honey in tea?

  28. On Guard by doTerra is amazing in preventing the flu, including H1N1. Once you are systematic, it is also great in treating and eradicating the virus! On Guard is a combination oil of Wild Orange, Clove Bud, Cinnamon Bark, and Rosemary.

    • On Guard is a form of the Thieves Oil which is what they grave robbers used to rob people who had the black plague. If you was even better prevention…get yourself (or make yourself) some Thieves oil. You rub it on the soles of your feet or on your chest.

      • Newsflash: Black plague (Bubonic plague) is spread by flea bites, not from person-to-person. Spreading oil on your feet is just superstition and magic. Do you really think medieval grave robbers had some immense knowledge of medicine or something?

  29. I wish I read this last week! My 9 year old has been suffering for a week. Following this protocol today!

  30. Wish I found this article sooner. Will bookmark it for future reference!

  31. Hi Wellness Momma,

    Try baking soda, good old Arm & Hammer. Pathogens cannot live in an alkaline environment
    and raising the body pH from acidic to alkaline will help a lot along with your protocol.
    Half a tsp. in a glass of pure water drunk a few times a day will kill a lot of bugs. If the taste
    is difficult, put it in juicing or bone broth and sip away.

    All good stuff. Thanks.

  32. Wish I had found this a week ago when my son was suffering. I woke up with it yesterday, so I went to the doctor and they verified Influenza b. I am allergic to the antivirals, so I needed another way to get over this asap. I tried the tough it out method, no fever reducers, lots of bone broth with a tablespoon of acv, pau d’arco tea with raw honey, lots of water, no sugar or carbs, and 10,000mg vitamin d, lots and lots of sleep. I woke up today fever free! But, I do feel pretty weak still and have a nasty cough, but am really impressed. My son had his fever for 4 days, so I believe taking fever reducers keeps you sick longer. I am wondering how long before your family started feeling more normal after the fever was gone. Instill feel so weak andyucky even without the fever. Thanks so much for all this info!

  33. Your regimen helped kick the flu in a little over a day. What books do you source your information from?

  34. hi! is the vitamin C loading safe for nursing moms like me? also, I have an acidic stomach. Im worried i’ll get stomach aches if i try it. what can you suggest? thanks!

  35. I usually get flu like sick once a year , but this year is different .I recently finished antibiotics for the cold i had hasn’t even been a month now i am having same flu like symptoms again .

  36. I know I’m late to the party, as this post is ancient, but just an FYI: Don’t take the oil of oregano while breastfeeding either — it can dramatically decrease breastmilk production and destroy your supply.

    • Fenugreek is an awesome natural way to help increase milk supply. I also drank the mothers milk tea. Both of these on their own help boost production but together they help even if your milk has almost dried up. Also, staying hydrated is essential for milk production. Sweet tea also increased my milk….it would increase within the hour with the sweet tea. All of these things increase your milk supply pretty quickly. Best wishes and hooray for breast feeding our precious babies….breast milk is the best way to help your baby build their immune system. …and its all natural!

  37. Thanks for the tip! We followed it for my son yesterday, after being diagnosed with flu from doc, and now- 24 hours later…all better! 98.6 temp, no symptoms, and ready to make him get up and clean! hahah!

  38. We do some of this but I just got back from getting the rest. We also use extra vitamin d but I wonder if you’ve ever used a colloidal silver?

  39. What brand of oil of oregano do you suggest?

  40. I have some family members that were diagnosed with the flu yesterday. My 3 year old son stays over there while I am work. However, I have him home today. He isn’t showing signs of anything yet but should I go ahead and start him on something?
    Also, I feel pretty rough today. During the night I woke up freezing and then sweating continually through the night. This morning I am exhausted and my right ear is aching. What should I do?

  41. Mama,

    My Naturopath has me taking mediclear for breakfast everyday and I always throw in a handful of blueberries in there.
    Is this too much sugar/starch while I’m sick with flu? Should I skip the berries and have honey or maple instead?

    • I wouldn’t skip the berries I would skip the honey (unless it’s raw) and the maple. Berries are full of healthy antioxidants and vitamins 🙂

  42. Hi Katie, we are currently battling the flu in our home and I was wondering what you know about Sodium Ascorbate as opposed to Ascorbic Acid. I read that it’s more readily absorbed by the body when I was researching ways to treat whooping cough (since we don’t vaccinate and I want to be prepared for how to handle it, should we ever have to).

  43. Been sick for four days and enjoyed your article and I am on it! Already upped my liquid intake and that has helped. A lot of green mucus (sorry) rolling around in my chest and my fever spikes off and on. Pretty rough…I am 67 yrs old. Do not want to have to take any drugs…..My nose is running to beat the band…I think that is a good thing. Tempted to take Sudafed…..NOT! Anymore advice would be appreciated. Thanks bunches.

    • Peggy, make sure you are taking the vitamin C in large doses. (3,000 a day is what I did last week and I am 100 lbs) I also recommend you take zinc lozenges and Elderberry Syrup as they really help with the sore throat and mucous. Also try to eat as much garlic as possible (in soups or salsa etc.) and focus on mainly plant foods with home made ginger tea. I hope you get well soon! It was a nasty flu. I was over it by day 6. I hope you are too!

  44. I love your blog and I love that you are into supporting the immune system so that it can do what it should do naturally. We all have amazing bodies given to us by our creator! I wa wondering about the Wild oregano oil, it says that you should not give it to children under 6 years of age. What age do you give it to your children?

  45. thanks katie for all the info you share! i would like to say also that we need to start thinking for ourselves. western medicine is good for emergencies or something like that. in general, to treat a disease, it is no good because they do not treat the root of the issue. they just prescribe us drugs that cause more issues etc…

    also, i don’t know about you, but whenever my family has been sick and we call the doctor, we are always told it is a virus going around blah, blah, blah. kaiser and other main hospitals have done this and i got to thinking…. how on earth is the CDC coming out with a flu shot if people that are sick with a virus are not getting tested to see what strain it is? how on earth is the CDC coming up with the flu shots stating that it was the strongest strain (or whatever they say)? nobody in our family, co-workers or friends have ever been tested at all. yet we are supposed to get a flu shot? yeah right. the stats are obviously not accurate.

    • Last year my daughter and I got the flu no shots,so I said thats it Im getting the shot next time.well nov. 2014 kids got the shot,today 2015 my daughter has the flu.so she got it with and without

  46. Could you please explain how vinegar — a solidly acidic substance – helps to “alkalinize” the body?

  47. Just followed this (except the oil of oregano) and it worked like a charm!!! Six days of a horrible stomach bug for two kids and my two other kids and I were never sick or over it in literally hours. AVC plus charcoal is potent and works wonders.

  48. I’ve been doing the majority of this for my sick husband, some of which he’s refused. Smh. Something about now reading it to him from off the internet validates it, so “Nurse Mia” is now allowed to follow through with these remedies. 😀 So thanks. Lol

    • My husband is exactly the same.

  49. Hi, I’m also wondering if there’s any detrimental side effects to taking large quantities of vitamin C while breastfeeding.
    Thank you.

  50. Thank you for all this great info!! I wish I had read it a few days ago… I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with influenza A and given Tamiflu. My boyfriend was freaking out about my high temp and how awful I felt… I knew there was a better way but did not listen to myself… I have bookmarked this page so if it happens again or to someone I know I’ll have it handy. I’ve had a cold, sinus infection and now this since Christmas. I eat mostly organic, I don’t each processed or fast food. I do work with the public but I don’t understand why my immune system is seemingly not working very well. I’m going to look into how to boost my immune system. Any suggestions?

    • dear Rene.
      I was the same as you. Eating very clean and healthy, no binge drinking or smoking, no processed or fast foods but couldn’t understand why I would get so ill for so long. My gp ignored all my other symptoms and complaints and so I thought I could fix it myself by boosting the immune system with herbs etc. yes they will help and absolutely keep on this path of natural clean nutrient dense eating but it only helps heal if you don’t have anything else going on. Meanwhile I had NO clue I had horrible inflammation, a sluggish liver and a severe hormone imbalance plus waiting for other tests to come back. Why? Because I did the same as my old doctors, decided my symptoms were no big deal and got used to it like it was normal. A poor immune system is a huge red flag. ignore me or your body but you will be worse off in the long run and will pay more out of pocket for treatment that health care won’t cover. GO to a naturopath and pay less now out of pocket for all the tests you need, don’t guess at what’s wrong with you or you’ll waste precious years like I did and now I’m infertile.
      Now it’s up to you. I really hope you hear what I’m saying to you.
      Best wishes.

  51. Thank you for the wonderful advice. I’m feeling like I’m just about to get flu – I have very subtle symptoms – and I’ll use your advice.

    On a side note it’s sad to see some aggressive and spiteful comments here – clearly if some of you people want to vaccinate your kids – go right ahead – no one is keeping your hands tied! I’m just wondering why are you coming to a holistic page to advocate evil pharmaceuticals – makes no sense. Pharmaceuticals in general are known to often cause more harm than good. Not to mention the whole goal is not to treat people but to make money for evil corporations.

    I just had to say something about that!

    Thank you for your lovely article!

    • Totally agree!!! Could not have said it any better.
      Go wellness mama!

  52. I’ve had a perpetual cough for years, that I knew I should get fixed, but somehow I always seem to get caught in other things and it was always left undone. But this last week it developed into a full blown flu and started to get into my lungs. My mid-back was starting to really hurt, a symptom I’ve never had so severely, so it really worried me. I suppose I should go to a doctor, but I also know that my body has been compromised by too many bouts of antibiotics and decided to look on the internet to find a natural way to overcome the flu and came up with this site. I only had a few items on your list, Orange Peel, Rose Hips, Apple Cider Vinegar, Nettle Leaf, Oyster Extract and some Chinese herbal cough medicine and it was enough. In just 12 hours, I felt so much better. Thank you so much, I probably will never go to a doctor again. First, I plan to make these supplements part of my daily regiment and if I even get a slight symptom of a cold, I will start upping my dose right away. I also used a very diluted mixture of water with a drop of Tea Tree oil to wiped the inside of my nostril, which helped me breath the fumes down to my lungs and it did help stop the cough. Sounds terrible, but a drop diluted in water doesn’t irritate at all. Also, 4 capsules of turmeric also stopped the cough.

    • you poor dear!
      So glad you found this website. It’s a wealth of information. Check out her articles on why she eats the way she does (ancestral type).
      Another good idea for you, might be to see a functional/ integrative doctor who can order you some tests such as IGG Alergy test, Candida, heavy metals, lyme disease, epstein barr, and a comprehensive blood panel to see if you’re deficient in anything. It will open the door to greater health and clarify your questions. Good luck!

  53. We’re all down with a cold this week and it’s lingering so much longer than usual! I’ve been doing more natural remedies than ever and we all take Vit C (ascorbic acid, natural berry powders and liposmal) every hour. We’ve all had many grams daily but none of us reached bowel tolerance!

  54. I followed instructions. I did not have oregano oil so i took oregana & thyme from my kitchen and made tea from it. It did not work out for me. My fever of 39.5 would not subside. I got it on Wednesday and and had to go to the doctor on Friday because my head was beginning to pound. I am still following the advice though. I figured it could do me no harm. Thank God my doctor says I do not need any antibiotics at this time.

  55. I think a lot of ppl on here have been trolling I feel like a lot of the mean comments are maybe from the same person just dif names used. Anyway an important thing to consider as I work at a hospital is that the er won’t admit you unless your temperature is 107 so many moms come running in with kids with fevers of just 104 and such thinking it’s the end of the world and it’s not your body is made to take care of itself, and fevers are a part of getting better for the most part! There’s also a lot of new research on fevers and the role they play coming out now suggesting that you should let the fever run it’s course and not take Tylenol and such to get it to come down. As a mother you are around your child the most you know if something is wrong or not and running to the doctor because your child has a runny nose is just plain ignorant. Almost 90% of cases we see we tell the parents there’s nothing we can do and they just need to go home and wait things out and we’ll maybe suggest some cough syrup and sinus spray. Think about when you’ve gone to the doctor and how many times you’ve been told that or something like that? Some doctors will even prescribe antibiotics to freaked out mothers because they just won’t leave without a prescription and antibiotics do nothing’s for the cold or flu because they only work on bacteria!

    • People need to be very careful with home remedies for children. We use essential oils to boost our immune system and for symptoms but when a fever is making the child so uncomfortable they cannot eat, drink, or sleep it is time for a fever reducer. Treat the child, not the number. Yes, fever is natures way of fighting infection, but if you cannot eat or sleep because of it you can run the risk of dehydration which is very dangerous in children. At the first signs of anything, we do raw honey and lemon juice, three times a day.

  56. Day 4 if having the flu and day 4 of doing this regime. No positive affect whatsoever. Perhaps the 2015-16 flu is too strong for this. Save yourself the 50 bucks, what i paid for all this stuff, and drink water/ tea, rest, and ride it out.

  57. Wellness Mama says her kids got over the flu in 12 hours. While I don’t doubt that her kids felt better from whatever was ailing them, the definitely did NOT have influenza.

    There are many other causes of flu-like symptoms that spontaneously resolve in a short time; the most common is mild food poisoning (a.k.a. stomach flu). While staying hydrated and taking vitamin C is always good advice, it won’t miraculously cure the influenza virus.

    • You’re wrong, John, but neither will Tamiflu. Our entire house had flu B confirmed by lab. Two adults and one child took Tamiflu . They had horrible chest pains and were extremely ill for 5 days with lingering symptoms for 7-10. My middle son refused the Tamiflu along with myself. I followed Wellness Mama protocol with addition of Dr. Mercola’s suggestion to sit in sun . He was symptom free in 12 hours. Up and plowing his garden. I also followed protocol using 10,000 units of C actually suggested by same doctor who prescribed Tamiflu, incidentally. While conventional meds do have their place in case of flu virus they are as useless as flu vaccine.

  58. Do you have any suggestions for treating a baby with a hard wracking cough and bad congestion? My 9 month old daughter is pretty sick. She’s too young for honey, too young for essential oils, too young for Vicks and I don’t want to put that on her anyway.

    • so sorry, so sad when they are sick. We used Hylands Nighttime cough and cold, safe for babies. It helps my kids a lot. make sure her air is humidified. She can drink warm bone broth. There is a natural “vicks” that I think hylands makes too. I would put in on the bottom of her feet and then put socks on her. It really helps with cough and congestion. Have you had her in, with how little she is maybe sh needs some nebulizers. I hate drugs but sometimes there is a time and place for them. I see you post is older, so hopefully she is better.

      I am super sick right now, came looking for advice. I keep spiking fevers in the 105 range and had to cave and start taking advil/tylenol every three hours because I am just to fatigued.

  59. Regarding the ascorbic acid, I am confused as to when corn was able to naturally produce vitamin C, could you shed light on this? Wouldn’t having your children consume fresh organic citrus such as oranges, grapefruits and lemon with honey as you described have the same effect if not better since you can source the vitamin C back to the fruit it came from?

  60. when i got household flu, I panicked, got stressed and tired and went to the doc for the treatment. However, it was the WORST experience ever…… Tamiflu caused me great trouble instead which was prescribed by the doctor. I experienced at least 12 side effects and started menstrual bleeding as well from the day i took the medicine. My cycle had got over just two days ago and it started again ,,,, something that has never happened in 21 years of my menstrual lifetime. Natural remedy rocks.. no side effects and the body gets stronger too. Thank you for the lovely household tips. Keep spreading your knowledge. Good luck.

  61. So aside from tea there isn’t much I can take on here. I have absolutely terrible flu and the worst reflux ever. Anything like vitamin C and apple cider vinegar make it unbearable (I know ACV should be helpful but for me it only makes it worse.) also we’re fasting from any meat and dairy so bone broth is also out. I am taking Ib Profin and Tamiflu. Also prenatal and as I’m nursing a 3 mo old and antacids of different sorts. Any help?

    • Minced fresh garlic in a spoonful of honey is great to kick sickness especially a cold-type virus but I don’t know what it would do to your reflux. It really heats you up from the inside out. Echinacea tea is great at the onset of sickness.

  62. Thank you! This is great stuff! I love knowing about natural remedies as opposed to drug store fixes. Thanks again and keep it up! : )

  63. After reading the article and most of the comments, I have to say that I take a middle ground. For uncomplicated sniffles and even mild flu, I have no doubt that herbal/natural remedies can make a big difference. Unfortunately in this day and age with population explosion and super bugs, I believe an uncompromised view of natural vs pharmacutical is a bit simplistic. I talk from experience. After raising two daughters to adulthood and handling an impossible to identify allergy to some plant, which compromises my immune system by placing it on high alert nearly all the time, I have read up, researched and tried just about everything. What works for me is to use home remedies to compliment and support over the counter cold and flu meds, and if I am not feeling better within two or three days or get worse in even less time, I go and see my doctor. Too many times I have kept trying to fight an illness at home and have ended up with opportunistic, secondary bacterial infections such as tracheitis, bronchitis or lower respiratory infection which then take more than one course of antibiotics to cure. My older, experienced and very wise doctor who on the contrary does not want to just take my money, and often gives advice on the phone and even at times delays visits to give my body a chance for a day or two to heal itself, advised against battling for a week or more on home remedies. A bacterial infection can take hold within just a few hours and even if you do eventually heal, it can leave you with permanent damage to tissue.

  64. Wellness mama, I hope you’re still reading these comments! My whole family is wiped out right now with the flu, and following your protocol (although found the info a day late). I’m wondering if you include nuts and nut butters when feeding your sick family? I have been using a fair bit to encourage the kids to eat their soups etc and symptoms are persisting pretty bad. Thanks so much! Courtney, from Australia ?

    • I don’t typically when we are sick, but my kids also don’t seem to like heavy foods like nuts or nut butters when sick. Hope you guys feel better soon!

Join the Conversation...

Please read the comment policy before replying to this post.