Based on their various nutritional components, we put together a winter tea that should help alleviate some of those runny nose blues. Each herb has a different purpose in the tea: basil acts as an anti-microbial, parsley provides vitamin C, sage is a mild nighttime sedative, mint adds flavor, and most importantly, thyme. The essential oil in thyme, thymol, is an active ingredient in Vicks Vaporub. For best results, drink the tea freshly made in the morning and evening for 3-4 days straight.
Here is a general guideline recipe that leaves plenty of room for personal taste.
Rinse the following:
2-3 sprigs thyme
2 sage leaves
2-3 sprigs mint
2-3 sprigs parsley
3-4 basil leaves
In a small or medium saucepan, bring 2-4 cups of water to a boil.
Turn off the heat and let the water come off the boil for about 30-60 seconds.
Drop your herbs into the water and let them steep for 5-10 minutes.
Sweeten to taste with some honey or maple syrup. For the kiddies’ sake, you will probably never put as much sugar in your homemade tea as you’ll find in over-the-counter manufactured cough syrups, so make it palatable enough for them to drink it up and hopefully ask for more.
Try these variations for other ailments:
For an upset stomach, add two cloves of garlic, a dried orange peel, and more mint.
For head congestion, use two ¼-inch rounds of fresh ginger and the juice of ½ a lemon.