It’s that time of year again – back to school! Which can mean an increase in the flu, colds, and viruses. Although there are many commercial medications to help ease the symptoms of these annoying bugs, natural herbal remedies can be just as effective (if not more so), more affordable, easy to make, free of chemicals and harsh ingredients, and often free of side-effects!

If you or your family develop a nasty cough or sore throat, the most important thing is fast, soothing relief. Don’t let a cough or sore throat keep you from enjoying the last few weeks of summer weather! This herbal cough syrup recipe helps relieve coughs and sore throats and is suitable for both children and adults.*

*Due to the risk of infant botulism, a rare but serious food poisoning, never give honey to children younger than age 1.

What You Need:

1 heaping teaspoon dried sage leaves or 2 heaping teaspoons fresh sage leaves, finely chopped

1 tablespoon honey

500 ml water (about 2 ¼ cups)

Apple cider vinegar

The Method:

  1. Put water and sage in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Once boiling, cover and lower temperature to maintain a simmer.
  3. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Strain into a measuring cup and add an equal quantity of the apple cider vinegar and mix. For example, if you are left with 2 cups strained liquid, add 2 cups apple cider vinegar.
  5. Add honey and mix well.
  6. Store in clean, tight-sealing bottles in a cool, dark location.

To Use:

This cough syrup can be taken when necessary. For adults, take one teaspoon. For children, take ½ a teaspoon. Always consult with a health care professional before taking any herbal medicine.

Benefits of Ingredients

Sage: Sage has been widely used as a natural remedy for a variety of health problems affecting the mouth, throat, and lungs. It is an effective cough suppressant and anti-inflammatory (which helps fight a sore throat).

Honey: In several studies, honey has been proven to be as effective as a common cough suppressant ingredient, dextromethorphan, in typical over-the-counter doses. It also acts as a sore throat soother, coating the throat and warding off irritation.

Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar has been used to treat dry coughs and the sore throats that result. Vinegar has a soothing effect on the throat, which helps reduce inflammation and relieve pain.