1. A Spoonful of Honey
Studies, such as one conducted at Penn State College of Medicine, have found that honey can work more efficiently to calm a cough than over-the-counter drugs. It is a rich demulcent, with a high viscosity and stickiness that does an incredible job of coating and soothing those irritated mucous membranes. Thanks to an enzyme added by bees when they harvest honey, it also hasantibacterial properties as well, which may help shorten how long you have the cough if it is due to bacterial illness.
Note: This is an excellent alternative remedy for both kids and adults, but should never be given to children under the age of 2 years due to the risk of botulism.
You will need…
-1 tablespoon of organic, raw, honey
Take 1 tablespoon of honey 1-3 times daily as needed to control coughing. Take immediately before bed if cough is disrupting your sleep. For children, you can adjust the dosing to 1 teaspoon up to one tablespoon.
2. Licorice Root Tea
Licorice root is both an expectorant and demulcent, simultaneously soothing your airways while loosening and thinning mucous, easing congestion. It can also ease any inflammation that may be irritating your throat. Its main constituent, glycyrrhizin, is responsible for most of its effects. 30-50 times sweeter than sucrose (table sugar), it inhibits an enzyme 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (how would like you to write that on a name tag?) This enzyme regulates access of glucocorticoid (a steroid hormone) to steroid receptors, ultimately slowing the conversion of cortisol to cortisone. This increases the effect of cortisol and reducing inflammation. If you are on steroids, or have any problems with your kidneys, it is best to steer clear of licorice root.
You will need…
-2 tablespoons of dried licorice root
-8 ounces of fresh water
Bring water to a boil and place the licorice root in a mug. Cover with water and steep for 10-15 minutes. Drink the entire cup up to 2 times daily.