Herbal Antibiotics, Antivirals to Treat Colds and Flu
This powerful herb encourages white blood cells and lymphocytes to attack invading microbes, increasing both the number and activity of the defending cells. It is available in standardized extract as well as in teas, capsules and power bars. By the way, in most places you can grow your own, and it is quite ornamental with its lovely flowers. Echinacea is used to treat infections and wounds, colds and flus, allergies and strep throat.
Olive leaf extract has been used for centuries in the Middle East and Mediterranean lands. It fights colds and flus, increases energy, stabilizes blood sugar, lowers blood pressure and, surprisingly, aids against autoimmune disorders. The extract, rich in phytochemicals, is especially good combined with other anti-oxidants. Olive trees also yield olive oil, of course, and this monounsaturated oil (like another one found in wheat germ) protects the body from viruses, bacteria and other microorganisms.
The common spice turmeric contains curcumin, which has notable antioxidant properties. It also has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and gastro-intestinal health benefits. Animal studies on this herb have revealed that turmeric can protect the liver from alcohol, toxins and other pollutants. Turmeric also helps in digestive problems by stimulating bile flow.
Garlic and onions contain chemicals that help activate natural killer cells and T-helper cells, and as a fringe benefit these vegetables defend you against cancer and heart disease. Garlic (like vitamin C) will help clear up a runny nose.
This herb from Peru is commonly used for gastro-intestinal problems, but it also works wonders on stimulating the immune response to help ward off infections and disease. Pau d’arco contains oxindole alkaloids that enhance the immune system’s ability to destroy bacteria and viruses.
Chris DePaulo is a staff writer for Rabble Magazine, focusing on health, nutrition, lifestyles and the environment. To download the free special report “Survive in the Age of Superbugs,” sign up for RABBLE’s free e-newsletter on the website, RabbleMagazine.com.