Aloha Wellness: 6 Natural Remedies for Cold and Flu Season in Hawaii



Written by Dr. Neel Chauhan, MBBS & Cloudwell Health Co-Founder

Aloha! From Cloudwell Health in beautiful Hawaii. As we embrace the changing seasons, it’s not just the breathtaking sunsets and the swaying palm trees we anticipate, but also the inevitable arrival of the cold and flu season. While we always recommend rest and hydration as the foundation of recovery, let’s explore some natural remedies, backed by science, that you might find beneficial.

1. Honey: The Natural Soother 

Here in Hawaii, we’re blessed with an abundance of natural honey, brimming with antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. A spoonful of honey can do wonders for a sore throat and cough, offering more relief than some over-the-counter cough medicines. Remember, though, honey is for those over 12 months of age.

2. Salt Water Gargle: A Simple Yet Effective Remedy

Sometimes the simplest remedies are the most effective. Gargling with warm salt water can soothe a sore throat, loosen mucus, and even help ward off upper respiratory infections. It’s a time-honored remedy that’s easy and cost-effective.

3. Nasal Irrigation: Clearing the Pathways

In our islands, where we’re surrounded by the ocean, the idea of using saline solutions comes naturally. Nasal irrigation with a saline solution, such as through a neti pot, can relieve congestion and sinus discomfort. Just remember to use distilled or properly boiled water for safety.

4. Zinc: The Mineral Shield

Zinc lozenges might be your ally in shortening the duration of a cold. Studies suggest that taking zinc within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms can reduce the length of colds. However, it’s always good to consult with a healthcare provider for the right dosage.

5. Vitamin C: More Than Just Oranges

Vitamin C is a vital player in our immune system. Regular supplementation may reduce the duration of cold symptoms. While it’s no magic bullet for prevention, it’s a staple in a health-conscious diet, especially with the abundance of citrus fruits we enjoy here in Hawaii.

6. Steam Inhalation: Embracing the Warmth

Inhaling steam can be a comforting way to deal with congestion and sinus pain. It’s a gentle, natural method to ease discomfort, much like the warm embrace of our Hawaiian sun after a cool, rainy night.

As we navigate through cold and flu season, it’s important to remember that while these remedies can provide relief, they are not cures. What works for one person might not work for another. At Cloudwell Health, we’re committed to providing personalized care tailored to your unique health needs. Our care team is always here to support you, whether you prefer an in-person visit or the convenience of telehealth.

Mahalo, Dr. Neel Chauhan