Scratchy and sore throat, teary eyes, mother of all headaches, body pains, runny nose…yes you know the drill – it’s another season of colds and flu.
We've yet to discover a cure for the pesky cold or flu bug, so we all go about treating the symptoms in our own weird ways - usually passed down from parent to child.
Here are some of the strangest (and not necessarily tried and tested) cold and flu fixes around:
Hang an onion
Hang half an onion up in your room or alternatively place sliced onions in a dish around your home, which will apparently absorb all the flu bugs swirling around in the air and prevent anyone in your home from getting sick. Also the pungent smell from the onion is said to help with clearing stuffy sinuses.
Wear wet socks to bed
Sleeping in wet socks might be just the thing to scare that fever away. Though this sounds counterproductive, many swear by this method. Soak a pair of cotton socks in cold water, wring them out and then slip them on, covering with a second pair of woolen socks. The theory is that the wet socks will draw the heat of the fever to your feet thus helping to reduce the fever in the rest of your body.
Rub your feet in Vicks
It seems the feet are the key to curing the cold and in this case, rubbing the soles of your feet with Vicks can help reduce a persistent cough. The theory may have some basis in reflexology - the theory that our extremities including our feet, hands and ears have pressure points directly relating to the rest of our body. For best results, try rubbing that Vicks onto the ball of your feet - the area that reflexologists recognise as representative of your lungs and chest.
Eat a slice of bread
Remedy a sore throat by eating a slice of bread smothered with honey and black pepper. The honey will coat your throat, offering a soothing effect, while the pepper acts as an antibacterial. For a Vitamin C kick, add some fresh garlic.
Fix that throat with apple cider vinegar
When your throat feels scratchy or if you have even a hint of cold symptoms, throw together these ingredients to help boost your immune system while soothing that sore throat.
Add one teaspoon of apple-cider vinegar, one teaspoon of cayenne pepper, one teaspoon of honey and the juice of a ¼ lemon and mix it all in a cup of slightly boiled water. Drink it four times a day to boost your immune system or gargle with it to prevent that sore throat from developing.
Indulge in dark chocolate
One more reason to eat chocolate! The theobromine particularly found in dark chocolate is said repress the sensory nerves responsible for that persistent cough. A normal milk chocolate bar won’t work so make sure you munching on some good quality dark chocolate made up of around 70 percent cocoa or more.
Suck those lemons
For a persistent cough, take a lemon and cut into four even wedges. Heat the lemons in the microwave until warm to the touch. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Suck on a lemon until your coughing subsides. Lemon is jam-packed with Vitamin C which aids your body’s natural defences.
The spud is your bud
Draw the fever out with potato slices stuck to your forehead. First slice raw potato and soak in vinegar. Then place on your forehead – being careful to avoid your eyes – and rest while the potato does all the work. Repeat as often as you want. Be sure to wash the vinegar off your forehead or risk drying out the skin on your forehead rather drastically!
Onions seem to feature a great deal as a weapon against colds and flu. This time the onion is used to draw out your fever through your feet. Slice onion into rings and place them in your socks. Apparently, once the rings have gone brown, you can consider yourself fever-free.