From Symptoms to Solutions: Navigating Seasonal Influenza with Expert Advice

Did you get infected with seasonal influenza and are suffering from its symptoms? If yes, this article is for you. Seasonal influenza is a common infectious disease that is caused by influenza viruses that cause acute respiratory infections in the body. While there is no cure for this infection, most people recover on their own once this infection runs its course. However, with natural remedies, you can reduce its duration and ease your symptoms at home. Learn 5 natural home remedies to ease flu symptoms at home in this article. Log on to for a consultation.

5 home remedies for flu symptoms

To manage your seasonal influenza symptoms, here are some home remedies that can help manage your symptoms:

  1. Elderberry:

Elderberry is an herb that contains immune-modulating and antioxidant compounds called polyphenols, that are used as remedies for colds, sinus infections, and flu. In preliminary lab studies, elderberry extracts have been found to possess abilities to fight off viruses. Researchers believe that anthocyanins, compounds found naturally in elderberries, may be the component that strengthens the immune system and blocks the flu virus from reaching cells.

A 2019 meta-analysis found that black elderberry can reduce upper-respiratory symptoms and may be a safer alternative to prescribed drugs for routine common cold and influenza cases. In one study, researchers gave elderberry extract to people who were sick with influenza B. The participants took the extract daily for 3 days and noticed symptoms resolved in 46.7% of those who took the extract but in only 16.7% of participants who took a placebo.

Side effects are usually rare and may lead to mild indigestion or allergic reactions.

  • Ginseng:

Ginseng root can lower upper respiratory infections including the flu. There are many types of ginseng including American ginseng and Asian ginseng, specifically the extract CVT-E002. Some studies show that taking CVT-E002 ginseng extract may lower the severity of flu symptoms and their duration.

Similarly, ginseng cultivated in North America called Panax quinquefolius is popular as a remedy for colds and flu. Ginseng contains compounds like polysaccharides and ginsenosides that work as active components that improve our health.

A systematic review of 5 trials involving 747 patients found a lack of evidence to support that ginseng can reduce the severity of a cold. However, researchers found that in one study a 25% reduction in the number of colds who take ginseng compared to a placebo.

Some concerns about the use of ginseng involve that it reduces the effectiveness of certain medications and shows estrogen-like properties. Ginseng found in OTC medicines is combined with a certain compound that doesn’t cause side effects and safety concerns associated with ginseng. However, there’s a possibility that there isn’t published safety data that confirms these claims.

  • Zinc:

Zine is a mineral that is essential for your immune system because it helps the body create germ-fighting white blood cells. Research has found that zinc may ease cold and flu symptoms. A 2015 analysis of clinical trials of oral zinc (zinc in the form of tables, lozenges, and syrup) shows a reduction in the duration of colds when taken within 24 hours after symptoms appear. However, oral zinc can cause some side effects such as nausea and gastrointestinal symptoms.

So, long-term use of zinc supplements, especially in high doses, can lead to copper deficiency. Zinc may also interact with drugs including antibiotics and penicillamine (a drug used to treat rheumatoid arthritis), so always consult with your healthcare provider before taking a zinc supplement.

  • Echinacea:

In a 2016 article, antiviral compounds found in the roots of Echinacea species can improve immune responses to influenza A. In one study, drinking echinacea hot drinks is as effective as the antiviral medication oseltamivir and reduces the risk of adverse side effects or complications.

Recent findings question the use of echinacea for colds and flu because one study found that echinacea did little to prevent or shorten the common cold. However, many critics of this study believe the evidence used about echinacea doesn’t work.

A 2014 meta-analysis of 15 studies found no major benefit of taking echinacea to prevent colds. However, it may provide a slight benefit in treating symptoms. Several types of echinacea such as Echinacea purpurea, Echinacea Angustifolica, and Echinacea pallida can be beneficial.

Echinacea purpurea shows the best supporting evidence. One study tested two different doses of Echinacea purpurea (450 mg and 900 mg) and found that the higher dose produced better results than a placebo in reducing the severity of flu symptoms in 3 and 4 days.

Herbalists often recommend taking echinacea every 2 to 3 hours daily with a total dose of 3 or more grams per day at the first sign of symptoms. After several days, you can reduce your dose and continue for the following week. Echinacea is also an ingredient used in OTC to support immune system supplements containing vitamins and herbs.

  • Vitamin C:

Like zinc, vitamin C has no major effect on the flu, however, as an antioxidant it has many essential roles in the body, including supporting the immune system that helps you reduce the length and severity of cold symptoms slightly.

A 2013 review of scientific literature found that taking vitamin C regularly was linked to small improvements in cold symptoms. However, studies where people took vitamin C only after getting a cold don’t notice improvement in their symptoms.

So, you add good dietary sources of vitamin C in your diet such as citrus fruits, red peppers, and green leafy vegetables to boost your immune system to fight the infection. You can add fresh lemon juice to hot tea with honey to reduce phlegm when you’re sick. Drinking hot or cold lemonade also helps.

Seasonal influenza is still one of the most common infectious illnesses in the world. These above-mentioned home remedies can help you manage your symptoms and get better earlier than they should. If symptoms don’t improve, make sure you visit your healthcare provider for medical treatment.

Don’t make your body suffer more from the infection, get professional help by visiting our infectious disease specialists in our Brooklyn clinic. They listen to your concerns and treat you accordingly. Give free tips on how to stay safe from infectious diseases. Call us on +1-347-384-5690. If you need any information on infections, log on to  to get a consultation. We have the best doctors that can help you and improve your quality of life!