Homemade cough remedies

1. Honey, onion and garlic syrup

The mixture:
Combine a half-cup of honey and a half-cup of water. Add in one whole chopped onion and one chopped clove of garlic. Add a dash of sage, thyme or oregano and allow to steep overnight at room temperature. Strain and use the liquid as a cough syrup. Store in your refrigerator.

Why it works:
Honey, onion and garlic are all naturally antimicrobial, says Dr. Solomonian. “Honey also acts as a demulcent, meaning it relaxes the cough reflex and soothes the throat.” Not cooking the mixture helps preserve the full antimicrobial properties of the onions and garlic, which lose some of their potency when heated. Finally, herbs like sage, thyme or oregano add even more antimicrobial benefits.

If you can’t wait overnight for your syrup to steep, simmer the mixture for five to 10 minutes until the onions soften. Although you’ll lose some antimicrobial properties, you will get some relief before heading to bed.