An effective sore throat cure needs to address the underlying reasons as to why you have an irritated throat. The majority of painful throats are caused by a low immune system which has allowed the body to be infected by a virus. The common cold, flu, Epstein Barr virus (which causes mono), the cox sackie virus and the herpes virus are frequent triggers. In some cases an infected throat can be triggered by a bacteria like strep or mycoplasma, or by a fungi like Candida.
Irritated throats can also be caused by environmental triggers like exposure to air pollution, dry air, allergens like pollen, dust mite or food allergies. Over use of the voice or breathing through the mouth can also dry the throat membranes out – leading to pain and irritation.
If your painful throat is caused by a virus, bacteria or fungus then your sore throat cure should aim to boost your immune system with nutrients, herbs and a healthy diet. If the cause is an environmental trigger then you will need to avoid or minimize the contact you have with this substance. Overuse of the voice or mouth breathing are both habits which can be eliminated.
Nutrients, herbs, throat gargles and healing foods will all help with these conditions. Let’s have a look at these sore throat cures in more detail:
1) Using nutrients as a sore throat cure
The best nutrients to boost your immune system and fight off infections are vitamin C, beta carotene, zinc and selenium. Zinc is particularly effective if you dissolve a zinc lozenge or tablet slowly in your mouth so that the zinc comes in direct contact with the membranes of the throat. This helps to soothe inflammation and pain.
2) Using herbs as a sore throat cure
There are some powerful herbs like echinacea, olive leaf extract, golden seal and citrus seed extract that act as anti-microbials that kill off the infection. Slippery elm bark is another excellent remedy to soothe pain and irritation. Slippery elm comes as a fine powder that forms a mucilage or gel-like substance when mixed with liquid. It coats the inflamed throat and helps to heal the damaged membranes.
3) Gargling as a sore throat cure
Gargling with a pinch of salt mixed in warm water can help flush microbes and toxins away from the throat to bring relief. Adding a pinch of cayenne pepper will give this remedy even more of a punch.
4) Hot fluids as a sore throat cure
Drinking hot fluids like plain hot water, lemon drinks (with a teaspoon of honey if desired), herb teas and broths can cleanse the throat, re-hydrate the tissues and speed your recovery.
5) Using diet as a sore throat cure
Certain foods like garlic, ginger, turmeric, cayenne and raw pineapple are excellent anti-inflammatories that can help relieve an irritated throat. Chicken soup is a renowned remedy for respiratory infections as it is high in the amino acid cysteine which helps to thin and expel mucous from the throat area.