I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV. But over the years I’ve gleaned some knowledge that might be helpful for you. If you’ve never used essential oils for colds and flu, I’ve got several that you might want to try. I’m also sharing some ways to stay healthy that you may think are common sense, but we sometimes forget to do them!
Essential Oils for Colds and Flu
Frankincense is one of the most commonly recommended essential oils to combat flu and colds. It has antibacterial properties and is good for congestion relief as well as headaches. If you’re stuffed up from a cold or sinus infection, try this:
- In a small jar mix a few drops (5-10) to a cup of Epsom salts and half a cup of baking soda. Mix this and pour it into your tub while the water is running.
Lemon essential oil
Lemon is an essential oil that can actually help you stay healthy since it helps boost your immunity. If you’re already sick, it’s also great for combating flu and colds since it can help reduce fevers and help with swollen glands. I’ve used it several times for earaches as well. Try these tips:
- Put a few drops of lemon essential oil on a piece of cotton and put the cotton in your ear.
- Dilute a few drops it in a carrier oil and rubbing it on swollen glands. Putting this in a roller bottle is great.
Lemongrass oil can help relieve symptoms of upset stomach. If you have an upset stomach, drink lemongrass tea. Don’t ingest the oil. I know some companies say it’s fine to take essential oils internally, but I don’t.
Try these three essential oils for colds and flu in a blend: lemongrass, peppermint and mandarin. Mix them in a roller bottle with a carrier oil and rub some on your pulse points. It’s purported to help reduce fever and help with headaches.
Peppermint is useful for many things including headaches, congestion, sore muscles, body aches, and nausea.
My dad has always told us girls to use steam for when we’re stuffed up and our sinuses are bothering us. He still tells me that when I call to complain about being sick. Peppermint oil is great to use in that “steam” or hot water. Put some steaming hot water in a pan, put a couple of drops of peppermint in the water, drape a towel over your head, and breathe in that steam! It really does help.
Peppermint is one of the essential oils to combat flu that you’ll definitely want to keep on hand for more than one reason. You can use it in many blends, so you’ll get plenty of use out of it.
Clove bud essential oil
Clove has a very strong aroma and if you’ve smelled it before, you definitely know what I mean. It is extremely useful in blends for muscle aches and injuries, boosting the immune system, and relieving bad coughs.
Clove oil has been used for years for toothaches because it’s got analgesic powers. Use a couple of drops of food grade clove oil in water and gargle with it when you have a sore throat. Be sure to spit it out.
Oregano essential oil
Oregano essential oil has antiviral and antimicrobial properties. It is one of the essential oils for colds and flu that you really should keep on hand too.
Oregano oil can help with symptoms like a cough and sore throat. This makes respiratory illnesses easier to deal with.
Tea tree essential oil
Not only is tea tree oil great for things like hair masks and scented bath bombs, it’s great for disinfecting too. It’s a natural disinfectant making it one of the most powerful essential oils out there.
Use some in a vaporizer or diffuser. Blend a few drops with a carrier oil to rub into your feet and chest for infections. This, like frankincense, is another great one to use in the bath. Just follow the directions above.
Lavender essential oil
This might not be your first thought when it comes to essential oils to combat flu, but it’s used in many blends that do. You know how your symptoms are always worse at night? That makes it hard to sleep. Lavender is healing in nature especially because of its relaxing properties and aid in sleeping.
It’s another great one to use in the bath with those Epsom salts and baking soda. You’ll find that many of these oils are great for baths when you’re fighting a cold or the flu.
Basil essential oil
Basil is another essential oil that you can use in the hot water for steaming because it has anti-spasmodic properties. It can help ease congestion when you use it this way or in the bath (see? another one for the bath!)
Another way to use basil is in a blend with a carrier oil. Rub it on your chest and feet to help with that congestion.
Thyme essential oil
Thyme is another one of the essential oils for colds and flu. It’s antiviral and is a good decongestant. Use it in the steam or in the bath.
You know how wiped out you get when you’re sick, and that symptom doesn’t go away quickly. Thyme can aid in restoring energy and fighting fatigue. It also helps support your immune system after you’ve been ill.
Find out one of my secrets for keeping my essential oils organized and accessible at the same time!
More Ways to Stay Healthy and Avoid Colds and Flu
- Wash your hands! See? Common sense. But do people do it correctly? Do they do it at all? You’d be surprised! Hand washing is so important that the CDC actually has a site dedicated to teaching people the proper way to wash their hands. A good rule of thumb is to sing the Happy Birthday song through twice while you’re washing your hands. This way you know you’re washing long enough.
- Use a tissue or sneeze into your elbow! When you sneeze, if you can grab a tissue, do so. If you can’t, sneeze into your elbow not your hands. The same thing with coughing! Cough into your elbow. You’re preventing the germs from getting on your hands, and you’re also preventing them from getting all over the place!
- Eat healthy foods! Another common sense approach to staying healthy, but do we do it? Not so much. Rather than cutting out all of the “bad foods,” add some good ones to your diet. You’ll be less hungry for the “bad” ones when you fill up on the good stuff. Foods rich in vitamin C are essential for fighting germs. Guava, red and green peppers, kiwi fruit, oranges, strawberries and mangoes are all great sources of vitamin C.
- Think about taking an immunity boosting supplement like EpiCor. EpiCor helps strengthen your immune system’s first and second line of defense by helping supercharge your saliva’s natural antibodies, so that germs have a harder time getting past your mucus linings. Then it helps your natural killer cells to work faster at getting those germs gone! It further increases your antioxidant power in as little as two hours! And finally it works like a prebiotic by increasing the good bacteria in your gut. Purchase EpiCor here.