23 July 2012

Onion Cough and Cold Remedy

The dreaded coughs of winter, which I thought we had managed to avoid this year, struck our home last week. We all came down with a very annoying cough, combined with some sinus congestion. Not enough to make us really ill, just enough to slow us all down and generally be annoying. 

Of course the worst thing is the lack of sleep. Like most things, coughs and congestion seem worst in the dead of night, when all you want to do is sleep.

When I was a child my mother would make a cough syrup and give to us and it really worked.  My brother would get bronchitis at first sign of a cool day and Mum always had a bottle of this cough syrup in the fridge, ready to ease his hacking cough.

It's easy to make, takes about 20 minutes or so and will cost you under $1.

1 large onion, diced
1 tbsp grated ginger
3/4 cup honey (raw honey if you have it)

Place the onion, ginger and honey in a stainless steel saucepan (not aluminium, it pits).  Turn the stove to the lowest heat possible and cook the mixture, with the lid on,  until it starts to simmer. Let the mixture simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn't stick. Strain the syrup and let it cool. Bottle it in a sterile bottle or jar with a tight fitting lid.

Children under 10: 1 teaspoon when needed
Children over 10 and Adults: 1 tablespoon when needed

The honey will soothe the throat, taking away any tickles that cause coughing, the onion will ease any congestion and the ginger will add warmth to aid healing.

If you find you still have that stuffy, congested feeling at bedtime, slice an onion and sit it on a saucer next to your bed. Yes, you will be able to smell the onion, but you'll get a good nights sleep because it will clear the congestion.  This is good for children who have stuffy noses, and much safer than having a vapouriser on in a bedroom.

Of course use your common sense. If the symptoms aren't relieved within 24 hours for an adult, or 12 hours for a child, or they get significantly worse in that time, get medical advice immediately.  While a winter cough or cold is usually just that, it can often disguise a more serious illness.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Cath, I've made this a few times but I've never heated it ...I just slice up onions put into a bowl and cover with raw honey cover and leave for a few hours or longer if time permits then strain and bottle the honey draws all the liquid out of the onion...I will put some fresh grated ginger next time I make it.
    Sherrie from Simpleliving :)


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