Cough Remedy

If you’re thinking this cough remedy recipe looks familiar, then you’re right!  It’s actually the same picture that you’ll see in the cough and cold remedy post, but for good reason.  You start with that recipe as the base.After you make up the honey, lemon, ginger mix put together, you’ll just need two more ingredients to turn it into a really great cough kicker…and you may already have these ingredients in your spice cabinet!

Worst case scenario, you’d have to go to the local grocery store to pick them up…but you won’t need to wait for something to be shipped from the far corners of the earth.  Convenience is key when you’re not feeling good.

The first thing you’ll need is turmeric.  It’s really a wonderful spice, and I plan on writing wrote a long post about it here and a really short one here.  They’re part of the ‘remedies you may already have in your kitchen‘ series.

Turmeric has a warm, peppery flavor, and is one of the key ingredients in Indian curries.  It is an anti-inflammatory, and a histamine blocker.  So if your throat is swollen and irritated, it is a great pick.  You may remember that I wrote about using turmeric in the series on Whooping Cough.  It was amazing how quickly this humble herb quelled a terrible cough that had been plaguing my kids for weeks!

Another thing you should know about turmeric.  It is *yellow*.  And anything that touches it is yellow, from henceforth and forever.  It is actually used as a dye.  (I have gotten it out with Oxygen Bleach stuff, but I don’t recommend getting on clothing that you plan on keeping!)

If you’re stocking up, then I recommend getting the organic turmeric powder, here:

Mountain Rose Herbs. A herbs, health and harmony c

To about one cup of your base recipe, add 2 teaspoons of powdered turmeric.

And there is one more secret ingredient that you want to add to your cough remedy.

black pepper 

Just a pinch has an amazing effect on your body’s ability to metabolize and absorb turmeric.  Black pepper increases your body’s ability to absorb turmeric by 2000%.  That’s not a typo!  Two-thousand percent.That is significant.
(References for the study on this are in the longer article above.)Admittedly, this combination is not as tasty in a sugary, lemony, nummy way.  It takes on more of a savory flavor when you add the turmeric.  But my crew tolerates it well, and definitely see a difference in using it.  In fact, my toddler really, reallyliked it, and would ask for it often.Dosage:  Once you’ve stirred in the turmeric and a pinch of black pepper, use just a spoonful as often as needed to calm coughing.

Alternative:  If your kids refuse to touch the turmeric, then you can sub cinnamon in the recipe (and omit pepper).

Warning:  Children under a year old should not be given honey.  If you have a little one, then use maple syrup as an alternative base for this syrup recipe.

 

Please let me know if you use this cough remedy, or if you have any questions.  Have you ever tried turmeric as a cough suppressant?  Did it work for you?

Herbal Cough Remedy
 
Author:
Recipe type: Herbal and Supplement Recipes
Ingredients
  • ½ c. Raw Honey or maple syrup for babies under one year
  • Half a lemon
  • 2 fresh or frozen garlic cloves- don't use the pre-minced stuff. It's lost its strong medicinal properties.
  • a chunk of fresh or frozen ginger* (optional)
  • 2 t. turmeric powder--or 2 chunks of fresh root, sliced, if you're lucky enough to find it!
  • ⅛ t. pepper
Instructions
  1. Fill a small jar halfway with raw honey. Raw honey has active enzymes, 'good' bacteria, and tons of other beneficial stuff that normal, pasteurized grocery store honey doesn't have.
  2. Squeeze the lemon half into the honey and stir.
  3. Crush the garlic cloves. You don't want to pulverize them, or you'll end up with little bitty chunks floating around in the honey...just crush them one good time, to start the enzyme reactions in the cloves. I like to whack the cloves of garlic with the side of my meat tenderizer mallet
  4. Do the same thing to the ginger.
  5. Drop them into the honey and stir.
  6. Add powdered or fresh (pounded) turmeric, and pepper to the mix.
  7. Blend well.
  8. We store this in the fridge, because the cold feels good on hot, scratchy throats.
Notes
!How to take it:
Take a spoonful of honey as needed, avoiding the chunks of garlic and ginger unless you just reeely like the taste of garlic. !Keeping it going:
We keep the mix going as long as we have colds in the house by adding more honey and lemon to taste. I also refresh the cloves of garlic and ginger daily, removing the old ones with a fork, and adding new ones. Add a t. of turmeric and a dash of pepper when you do a major refill. This keeps in the fridge for several days, but I toss it as soon as we start feeling better, and make up a fresh batch for the next time we need it. !Tip
I love the taste of fresh ginger, so whenever I buy some for a recipe, I will chunk up the rest of it into one inch pieces and freeze it for using in remedies or for cooking.
I also buy bulk peeled garlic cloves, and keep them in my deep freezer. I keep a smaller container of them frozen in my kitchen freezer for convenience.
If you're lucky enough to have good, multi-cultural grocery stores in your area, you may be able to find fresh turmeric root, which is really delicious! It's got a lemony-gingery flavor. It also keeps well in a sealed container in the freezer.

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  • Sisters Playing House

    been trying this for two days now – I had developed a little cough/tickle 2 days ago and saw this on pinterest. my husband gets a chronic cough during winter and he is also taking it – so far I’m doing better except I’m suffering from ear pain as well.

    • Its_Gwen

      Glad you’re enjoying the cough remedy! Cinnamon is another good addition to this.

      Sorry about the ear pain…this years cold seems to be wanting to settle in the ears here too. Have you tried this ear infection remedy? It works really well here!
      http://www.gwens-nest.com/natural-remedies/ear-infection-remedy/

  • http://www.facebook.com/barbara.h.griffin.9 Barbara Hoit Griffin

    We usually use Delsym for coughing but my husband didn’t tell me we were out. So, my 4yo has croup and had been coughing all night. I got the last tablespoon of raw honey and put about 1/32 of a teaspoon of tumeric, minced garlic juice, lemon juice (from a bottle) and then a couple “grains” of pepper. Oh, and 1/16 t of juice from minced garlic…. Stirred it up and put it in a medicine syringe. Had to bribe him with 2 bites of ice cream afterwards.
    BUT although I would have preferred all natural, organic, etc… these were all just your typical spices. And he was cough FREE for 6 hours.
    Just wanted you to know that it worked. THANKS!

    • Its_Gwen

      LOVE reports like this! :) SO glad you both got good rest, and that he got relief.

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  • Holly Lahrman

    I’ve been using this for the last 24 hours and it is helping! Thank you!

    • hi_itsgwen

      Wonderful! So glad it’s helping!

  • Marjorie

    We are fighting cold/flu here, and have been using herbals the whole bout. We’ve been dosing up on elderberry syrup, putting 2 teaspoons in dd’s sippy cup and filling the rest with water. I made the honey/turmeric syrup last night and added 1 tsp of cinnamon to it this morning. We all feel pretty good today. My being ‘sick’ lasted last night and this morning, both of the kids are almost 100% after just 2 1/2 days. Colds usually lay us low for a solid week. We also used garlic oil on the kid’s chests and feet, and an onion/salt poultice on their chest over night to calm nighttime coughing.

  • Krista

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for this. It has helped so much. My daughter has Reactive Airway Disease and has caught every single respiratory infection this winter. She had a 2.5 month long bought of bronchitis brought on by two colds. I had finally cleared that up with fish oil, elderberry, echinacea, mullein, honey, and lemon oil, but this last week her brother brought home another cold. She’s been coughing nearly non-stop, and our earlier regime isn’t touching it. And I am soooo tired because her coughing is keeping me awake.

    I’ve given her two doses of this and her coughing has calmed and her breathing has slowed down. Thank you soooo much!

    • Its_Gwen

      I’m so happy that this is a help to you! It was a big help for us as my kids recovered from whooping cough a few years back. It’s good stuff!

      • Krista

        How often can you give this to a three year old? It worked very well at night, for 5 hours each dose, but now that she’s awake it seems to be wearing off faster, working about 2 hours. I’m using it in conjunction with a licorice tincture to help with bronchial swelling.

        • Its_Gwen

          I am comfortable dosing it as often as they want to take it. Mine would come ask for it. It’s all food based ingredients, so there were no concerns for me. You may want to refresh the garlic to get more boost to the potency.

          • Krista

            Thanks!

          • Krista

            Okay, sorry for flooding for comment section, but I’m just so excited. After a week of having a cold my daughter isn’t wheezing and rattling anymore thanks to this stuff. That’s unheard of for her; last time she got a cold she had bronchitis for 2.5 months.

            So this is my next question. Can I use this as a preventative? I was thinking the turmeric would be good to keep the bronchial restrictions away.

          • Its_Gwen

            Oh, I’m THRILLED for you! That’s fantastic! I would think using it as a preventative would be fine…or you can just incorporate these foods more frequently.

            If you’ll go to my Whooping Cough Remedies post, I also provide instructions for a stew that is really supportive for lung health and repair. That may be a great thing to look at as well. :)
            http://www.gwens-nest.com/natural-remedies/whooping-cough-natural-remedies-for-prevention-and-treatment/

  • JosieAK

    My daughter 4 wasn’t sick, but woke every morning with a phlemy cough she had to clear and it seemed to be getting worse. I mixed this up (had to bribe her with a jelly bean to take it) and two days later, no cough! Now I have so much of it. Do you think I could store it in the freezer to prevent it from molding? Would that destroy its properties? Maybe strain it first?

    • Its_Gwen

      You can strain it and push it to the back of the fridge…honey doesn’t usually mold because of the high sugar content. I’ve never tried freezing it.

  • Natural.Keys

    I took a look at this recipe after talking to my friend about my son’s cough. It reminded me of, and sounds like, the stuff my dad uses for his asthma (Yamoa Powder). I have always been for alternatives other than running to the doctor, but not nearly as much as some of you out there. Maybe because it sounds harder than it really is…If this stuff works on my son, that may change. :-)

    • Its_Gwen

      I’m all about the easy button when it comes to natural remedies. I love to play with what I already have in my cabinets. :)

  • Lori Georgitso Sharp

    Don’t have a cough now, but glad to have this for the future because it’s guaranteed I will have one when the season changes!! Thanks :)

  • SickAlex

    I currently have whooping cough, and have just made a batch of your syrup. Once I’ve added the ingredients, should I let the mixture sit in the fridge for a few hours before consuming?

    • Its_Gwen

      The active antibiotic in garlic is most potent within an hour or so of cutting/crushing, but it retains the anti-inflammatory properties long after (which I think are actually most beneficial at the coughing stage of pertussis).

  • Maria

    Hi. I am sitting up at one a.m. as my daughter coughs and coughs. I will definitely try this for her. Thanks for your blog it has answered a lot of my questions.

  • Linda

    Question, the raw honey in have is almost always solid, how do you stir in the other ingredients without heating it up? Or can I, just a little bit to get it flowing?