Herbal Tea: A Gentle Cold And Flu Alternative To Over-The-Counter Remedies

As we head deeper into cold and flu season, now is a great time to stock up on all your go-to health products to stay prepared for the germ onslaught that is sure to follow (especially if you take public transit frequently). While you might be tempted to reach for the quick fix that over-the-counter products provide, there are natural alternatives that may be more suited to your health needs.

Over-the-counter products usually provide quick relief for aches and pains, respiratory complaints and nausea, but they can also have drastic side effects that counteract their effectiveness for many people. A gentler, side-effect free alternative is herbal tea, which can be consumed on a consistent basis (keep in mind that it’s still always a good idea to consult your doctor before self-treating any conditions or illnesses. For instance, ginger is great for relief of upset stomachs, but also possesses natural blood-thinning properties. If you’re undergoing surgery or taking a blood thinner, you’ll want to exercise precaution when consuming ginger tea).

For those new to the world of herbal tea, it may be difficult to determine which teas are best suited to specific health complaints. However, many tea brands are now making it easier for consumers to pick the right herbal formulations. For instance, top-selling herbal tea brand Traditional Medicinals has recently updated their packaging to help consumers match their collection of 32 medicinal teas with the remedies they’re seeking. Consumers can quickly spot Traditional Medicinals’ specially-formulated seasonal cold remedies, such as Cold Formula which provides temporary relief of coughs due to colds and Echinacea Plus which aids in the overall relief of cold and flu symptoms, marked with red packaging. The teas are readily available for purchase (you can pick up a box of Traditional Medicinals tea at grocery, drug, and natural food stores across Canada).

If you need more reasons to try herbal tea: remember that aside from being useful during cold and flu season, key ingredients such as Valerian and Dandelion Root are also useful throughout the year and can be consumed every day. Valerian aids with relaxation and sleep while Dandelion Root supports healthy digestion. If you’re worried about the taste, you can always add a teaspoon of honey (also great for your health) to soften the bitterness of the herbs. In any case, a little bitterness isn’t a bad thing: bitter herbs are known to stimulate bile production which aids digestion and provides liver support. For the environmentally conscious: herbal tea cultivation can be gentle on the environment and local economies too. Traditional Medicinals prides itself on using high-grade medicinal herbs that are Fair Trade, sustainably produced, and organic whenever possible, which is a benchmark for herbal tea cultivation and usage.

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