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Onions and Garlic Make Popular Cold Remedies

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Q. You may be interested in my family's cold remedy. My mom always used to saute chopped garlic in olive oil, spoon it up and put a little salt on it. Then she would put it in a cool spoon and give it to my sisters and me when we had just the beginning of the sniffles. They would go away fast. I'm originally from Peru.

A. We appreciate family remedies that have been passed down for generations. Many cultures value garlic and onions for their healing properties.

Readers tell us that onion syrup has been used against coughs for decades. The onion was sliced thinly and cooked slowly with some sweetening and a little liquid. Here is one reader's story: "My mother prepared onion syrup when I was a child in the 1940s & 50s, but she used honey instead of sugar.

"On my first trip to India in 1986 I accompanied a local doctor to villages where she was teaching assistants to distinguish between minor ailments that could be treated with local remedies and major problems that needed professional care in the nearest large village. One of the remedies used for minor coughs was an onion syrup sweetened with natural sugar processed from the local sugarcane fields."

We like the idea that an onion relative, garlic, would also be helpful against colds. This aromatic bulb has been used against colds, flu, fever and a host of other complaints. There are many other traditional family cold remedies, including ginger tea, hot toddies and Joe's mother's chicken soup recipe, in our Guide to Coughs, Colds & the Flu.

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  • Currently 4.7/5
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Was this information helpful? Average rating: 4.7/5 (84 votes)
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1 Comment

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So, how does one prepare onion syrup mentioned in the article for colds? Thank you!

People's Pharmacy response: Try this: http://www.peoplespharmacy.com/2013/02/18/onion-cough-remedy/

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