Did you know that the average child will get anywhere from 6-12 colds a year! Holy cow! That’s a lot of colds to deal with, and that’s only with one kid! Thankfully there’s help in the form of safe, gentle herbs. Today I’m sharing how I prepare lemon ginger tea to help nip a cold in the bud as well as how I get my kids to take it.
Now, the average adult only gets around 2-3 colds a year. The difference between the number of colds in an adult and a child is because children’s immune systems are still developing resistance to the things they are exposed to… like the cold virus for example. Adults have had years of resistance building so we’re less likely to pick things up than our little ones are.
No matter, colds will come, for adults and children alike. Thankfully there are natural remedies that we can utilize to help our bodies fight the cold virus so that it’s less severe and doesn’t last as long as it could without the remedies.
Feel A Cold Coming On? It’s Time To Break Out The Kitchen Spices!
Now, when it comes to using herbs when a cold shows up, it’s important to act quickly. Herbalists teach that as soon as you feel a cold coming on (maybe you are sneezing, your nose is runny, you have a headache, and you just feel rough) you need to take some stimulating herbs to kick the body into gear. Stimulating herbs not only help to warm the body up, but they get the blood moving as well. It’s blood that carries all the nutrients and white blood cells where they need to go so this is an important step you don’t want to miss.
There are several stimulating remedies that one could use, but lemon ginger tea is my favorite for two reasons.
- It’s quick to make.
- My kids will take it.
The recipe below makes one 8 oz. cup of tea which you would keep warm and sip on until it’s finished. Same goes for the kiddos. They can have just as much as mom or dad. Afterwards, I’d begin hourly dosing using an echinacea root tincture (day 1 of symptoms only) as well as my Ultimate Immune Boosting Elderberry Syrup (for several days).
Another great thing about using stimulating herbs at the beginning of a cold is that anything that follows (like echinacea tinctures or elderberry syrup) will have a greater impact on the body. That’s because stimulating herbs act as catalysts. Catalysts increase the delivery of herbal constituents throughout the body. Basically they give your herbal remedies a little boost and help them get where they need to go in the body.
Lemon Ginger Tea
Step 1: Mix powdered ginger and honey together until well combined. This is called an herbal electuary.
Step 2: Slice lemon into thin slices. Place two slices in a cup and cover with 6-8 oz. of boiled water. Cover the cup and allow it to steep for 5 minutes.
Step 3: After 5 minutes, press the lemons with the back of a spoon to extract as much of the juice as possible. Take 1-2 tsp. of your ginger electuary, and add it into your lemon tea. Mix until dissolved. Cover your cup for another 5 minutes.
Step 4: When time’s up, taste your tea. Adjust by adding more honey or electuary if needed. Sip while hot (a thermos is great for this) and enjoy!
NOTE: Some of the powdered ginger will sink to the bottom of the cup. Just leave it and the lemon slices behind for the compost bin.
SUBSTITUTIONS: Feel free to substitute 2-3 slices of ginger root in place of the powdered ginger. Simply let your lemon and ginger slices steep for 15-20 minutes total.
Ginger is a great herb. It works in so many different ways, and it’s always available. It’s what some people refer to as a “supermarket herb” because you can always find ginger root in a supermarket. Same goes for powdered ginger in the spice section of the baking aisle.
Ginger is a warming herb with several actions. It is an antiemetic (helps reduce nausea), anti-inflammatory, expectorant (thins mucous), carminative (help with digestion and intestinal cramping), diaphoretic (open the pores so you can sweat), and antimicrobial.
It’s great for upset stomachs, cold and flu, fever, and congestion or productive coughs.
Getting Kids To Take It
It can be tough getting kids to take herbal remedies unless everything you make tastes sweet like a syrup. This is especially true for younger kids. Thankfully, I’ve not found it too difficult to get my kids to take this stimulating, pungent remedy as a tea. However, if you think you may have trouble, here are three options that may come in handy.
- Make your electuary (step 1 above), and let your child take a dose (1 tsp.) that way as often as needed. If you have picky kids or kids that aren’t used to herbs, this is a great option as it tastes sweet and the spiciness of the ginger is only an aftertaste. Follow with some water.
- Follow the recipe to make your lemon ginger tea. Feel free to add more honey or cut the ginger electuary dose in half.
- Make a traditional syrup from the lemon and ginger. You can always dilute this in hot water. This is another great option for kids that won’t drink the tea as it tastes sweet.
So what did you learn in this post?
- Kids commonly get more colds than adults.
- Stimulating herbs are helpful at the first sign of a cold.
- Ginger acts as a catalyst to other herbs used with it (like echinacea and elderberry).
- Ginger is known as a “supermarket herb”.
- Most kids will drink this tea (or eat the electuary).