7 Ayurvedic Treatments for Cough and Cold

Ayurveda is an ancient medical science that makes the use of natural herbs, spices, and other products and incorporates lifestyle changes to treat various ailments of the body. Known to have originated from the Vedas in India, today Ayurveda has found popularity in various parts of the world. It is widely practised as an alternative medication technique, and millions of people rely on Ayurvedic treatment for cold and related issues.

Expert Covid Care at Home

7 Ayurvedic treatments that can be carried out at home for the treatment of cold and cough


1.    Tulsi

Tulsi or Holy Basil is highly useful in eliminating dry cough, making it one of the best treatments of cough in Ayurveda. Because of the numerous benefits it offers, Tulsi is known in Ayurveda as the ‘Mother Medicine of Nature’ and is probably the reason why it is worshipped in Hindu households in India.

Consumption of Tulsi leaves boosts the production of antibodies in the body, thereby helping it fight infections. Tulsi leaves are safe to consume and can be used in the following ways:

●    By chewing 5-6 leaves in the morning (After washing the leaves thoroughly)
●    As tulsi tea
●    By adding tulsi leaves to a kadha


2.    Ginger

Ginger is another well-known Ayurvedic treatment for cough and cold. It can be consumed in fresh form or as dry ginger powder. When taken along with honey, it helps in treating cold and cough fast. Ginger honey tablets or toffees are also available in the market that help soothe an infected throat. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that help in the cure of sore throat. It is an effective remedy for treating productive cough.

Ginger can be consumed in multiple ways, such as:

●    As ginger tea – Ginger tea is among the fast Ayurvedic remedies for cold. To make it, add slices of ginger and tea to boiling water. Strain and pour it into a cup. Top it with honey and consume.

●    Ginger and honey – Add grated ginger to a tablespoon of honey and swallow. Add black pepper for additional effect.


3.    Honey

Honey makes for an excellent medicine for the treatment of cough in Ayurveda. Honey has antimicrobial properties, which helps in getting rid of cough or phlegm. Soft and smooth though it seems, honey greatly helps loosen mucus and provides relief from chest congestion. This is one reason why it is present in many non-alcohol-based cough syrups. 

The good thing about using honey as a medicine is that while other Ayurvedic treatments for cough and cold may be bitter and hot in nature, honey is an absolute delight for the tongue and throat. This property makes it a popular choice of medicine among kids as well as elders.

Some ways to consume honey are:

●    As it is – You can take a spoonful of honey twice a day to ease your cough.
●    By mixing it with ginger juice
●    By adding it to tea or kadha


4.    Giloy

Giloy has gained a lot of popularity in India in recent times as an Ayurvedic treatment for cold. It especially became a household name after the spread of the COVID-19 virus in India. Giloy is a plant with heart-shaped leaves that is also known as Guduchi or Amrita. Giloy helps in the treatment of cold caused due to pollutants or allergens and helps manage tonsillitis. Moreover, its anti-inflammatory property helps boost immunity.

Giloy can be consumed in the following ways:

●    As a juice – You can buy readymade Giloy juice from the market or extract it at home and add it to water
●    As tablets – Giloy tablets are easily available in medical shops 
●    By adding in a kadha 


5.    Mulethi 

Mulethi or licorice is a bitter tasting herb that has seen old-age application in cold allergy treatment in Ayurveda. It has anti-inflammatory and expectorant properties that help in thinning the mucus inside the airways. This helps in finding relief from cough and congestion. 

You can have mulethi in the following ways:

●    By adding mulethi powder to warm water
●    By gargling with mulethi extract
●    By adding it to tea or kadha


6.    Pippali

Pippali or long pepper is among the best treatments of cough in Ayurveda. It is often present in the box of ‘garam masala’ at homes. Pippali is hot in nature and has expectorant property that helps loosen mucus and provides relief from congestion. It provides relief from headaches and other problems related to common cold. 

Mentioned below are a few ways to consume pippali:

●    Add pippali powder to a spoon of honey and swallow it
●    Add it to kadha and drink it after straining


7.    Garlic

The use of garlic for cold allergy treatment is not unknown in Ayurveda. Garlic has antimicrobial and antiviral properties that make it an excellent remedy for treating common cold. 

If you think garlic is the right choice for you, here’s how you can use it:

●    Chew one or two raw cloves
●    Add it to soup or other dishes


Other Home Remedies for Cold and Cough

Apart from the consumption of the above-mentioned herbs, there are a few other ways to get rid of cold and cough naturally at home. Some of them are:

●    Steam – Taking steam helps in clearing out mucus from the lungs. One can either use a vaporiser easily available in the market or boil water on a stove to take steam. Adding items such as salt, cloves, or Vicks to the water makes for a great Ayurvedic treatment for cold and running nose.

●    Salt Water Gargle – Salt water gargle is a common household remedy for loosening phlegm deposited in the throat. Heat a glass of water and add 1/4th teaspoon of salt to it. Gargle 3 times a day for best results.

●    Pranayam – Prayanam is an effective treatment of cough in Ayurveda. This technique clears the breathing passage and provides relief from nasal and chest congestion. 

●    Kadha – Kadha is a well-known remedy in Indian households for the treatment and prevention of cold and flu. Kadha is a water extract made by boiling herbs and spices such as black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, tulsi, etc. in water. This clears any infections in the respiratory tract and enhances immunity.

●    Nasya – Nasya is a lesser-known but effective Ayurvedic treatment for cough and cold. In this technique, an Ayurvedic oil such as Neem, Ginger, or Eucalyptus essential oil is used as a nasal drop. This helps clear the mucus in the nasal tract.  

●    Vitamin C – Consumption of food rich in Vitamin C such as oranges, lemons, grapefruit, papaya, cauliflower, broccoli, etc. helps in fighting the cold.

●    Avoid foods of cold nature – Food items of a cold nature such as curd, banana, cold juices, etc. should be avoided as they are known to aggravate cold.

We are blessed with numerous treatments of cough in Ayurveda. The items required for these remedies are cheap and are easily available in the local markets. Moreover, they come without side effects if used within a limit. However, even these basic treatments get difficult to manage by oneself as one gets old. This is why it is advised to seek the help of elder healthcare services easily available today. At Emoha, we are always there for our elders because for us, it is always #EldersFirst