Cold and flu season is upon us and the average Australian family is expected to be hit with three bouts of cold and flu this season, with more than a quarter of unlucky Aussie families being hit up to seven times.

Leading nutritionist and Cenovis spokeswoman Kate Freeman has shed light on key findings from the 2017 Cenovis Immunity Index, revealing that when it comes to keeping the family fighting in the winter months, Aussie mums rely on an arsenal of home remedies.

“From upping the ante on water intake to experimenting in the kitchen with a hearty and wholesome soup, mothers across the country will try anything to treat the family illness this winter,” Ms Freeman said.

“We asked and Aussie mums have answered – below are the most commonly used remedies households adopt when a family member is feeling under the weather.”

Here Kate shares the top remedies Aussie mums are relying on this winter:

  1. Hydration

Most mums (64%) agreed that hydration is the most important asset to dealing with a family cold, ensuring they keep the fluid intake high for every member of the household. Even though there isn’t evidence that consuming extra fluids can help fight a cold or flu, consuming sufficient water each day will not only keep you hydrated but also boost energy levels and brain function.

  1. Vapour rub

The second most popular home remedy during cold and flu season is using a vapour rub (47.8%).  Best known as a decades-old relief for nasal congestion, applying a small dollop onto the chest before a nights’ sleep is a popular way that may ease the discomfort of a stuffy nose or a cough.

  1. Vitamin C

Whether digesting it in the form a vitamin C tablet or through vitamin C-rich foods such as oranges, almost two in five Aussie mums (38.4%) are incorporating vitamin C into the household diet as a way to support the immune system. Many people are inclined to reach for vitamin C once they’ve been struck with a cold or flu, but integrating it into your diet regularly is a great way to proactively strengthen your immunity. It can’t stop you from catching a cold but a high-quality diet rich in vitamin C may certainly decrease the duration and severity of it.


  1. Chicken soup

Over a quarter of Aussie mums (25.6%) will resort to cooking up a chicken soup this winter in an effort to cure the family sickness. A warm hot chicken soup packed full of fresh, seasonal vegetables can help boost your nutritional intake by giving the body plenty of protein, antioxidants and essential vitamins. It’s also the perfect healthy comfort food you might be craving when you’re not feeling 100%.

  1. Upping garlic and ginger intake

Increasing the consumption of garlic and ginger are other common actions used by Aussie mums (23.4%) when family members are feeling under the weather. Studies have shown ginger to be useful for relieving nausea, while garlic acts as a natural antibacterial and can be beneficial in the management of colds and upper respiratory infections. There’s also nothing quite like the smell of onion and garlic sautéing in the pan with the makings of a delicious, healthy dinner!


Other top remedies include face steaming (17.2%), taking a warm bath (16.9%) and drinking herbal tea (14.1%).