Chinese Herbal Formulas for Colds and Flus
Because of the complexity of each individual, there are multiple herbal formulas used to not only treat, but also provide relief from common symptoms of colds and flus. One common herbal cold and flu formula is Gan Mao Ling. It provides relief of symptoms of the common cold, especially sore throat and fever. In addition, the formula is made with herbs to not only reduce symptoms, but it also contains herbs to push the pathogen out of your body more quickly. Gan Mao Ling works best when taken at the first signs of getting sick and when taken according to the increased dosage recommendations for the initial stage of contracting a cold. With this common cold herbal formula, some rest, and lots of clear fluids, you will be on your way back to health in no time.
Chinese Medicine’s Approach to Colds and Flus
Both Chinese medicine and Western medicine agree that colds and flus are caused by the introduction of a pathogen into the human body. However, Chinese medicine takes the individual’s constitution into consideration. Fundamentally, there must be some weakness (e.g. immune deficiency) that allows the pathogen to enter. Anything that weakens the body’s resistance (overwork, not sleeping, eating poorly, etc.) can weaken the immune system and allow a pathogen to attack and enter, causing disease or in this case a cold or flu. Furthermore, the individual’s constitution together with the nature of the pathogen determines what symptoms and how the cold and flu will present in that given individual. Frequently we see two people get the “same cold” and have completely different symptoms and/or degrees of symptoms that are present. This occurs because of the relationship between the individual’s constitution and the constitution of the pathogen and is fundamental to Chinese medicine’s approach to both treatment and prevention of colds and flus.
The Use of Chinese Herbs to Treat and Prevent Colds and Flus
Chinese herbs are not always given in isolation, as a single treatment, but rather in synergistic combinations. In addition, even if an herb is given in isolation as a great “immune booster,” it may not be appropriate for every individual. The ability to diagnose the individual and come up with a treatment strategy that fits that person’s underlying imbalance is paramount to boosting one’s immune system. Commonly, an individual would first have an evaluation by a practitioner and he/she would prescribe an appropriate herbal formula or combination of formulas that best addresses the individual’s unique constitution. This evaluation can be done with a licensed acupuncturist and herbal practitioner online or via a phone consultation here at Alina Sepeda Herbal Medicine. In addition, our evaluation can be done thoroughly and at a fraction of the cost to see a practitioner in your community.
It is our hope to be able to treat a cold or flu in the earliest stage and even prevent it completely in our patients. Even if an individual has a severe cold or flu that has been going on for some time (e.g. a week or two), Chinese medicine can many times successfully reverse the situation, avoiding antibiotics. However, when necessary, Chinese medicine complements a Western medical approach of antibiotics.