Winter Solstice – Manage the Winter Blues of Colds and Flu

On the day of Winter Solstice, the Earth’s south pole is tilted away from the Sun. The Sun rises north of east, sets north of west and reaches twenty-eight and a half degrees above the horizon at noon. This is the shortest day of the year.

Winter is now truly in full force. As the nights get colder, even the best of us can get bogged down with seasonal colds and flu.

Fortunately, there are many effective natural remedies that can get you through this cold and flu season in good health!


Viral attack!

Colds and the ‘flu are caused by viruses. Viruses are essentially strands of genetic material enclosed in a protein coat that penetrate, and literally hijack, susceptible living cells within 10 to 15 minutes of exposure.

By exploiting cellular machinery, viruses such as rhinovirus, coronovirus and influenza rapidly replicate and multiply, and then depart the cell to infect surrounding cells.

Symptoms do not occur until the infection reaches a critical threshold; however, it is the inflammatory immune response to viral invasion, as well as the virus itself, that causes the familiar symptoms of sore throat, nasal congestion, headache, cough and fatigue of colds and ‘flu.

Symptomatic relief that supports immunity

Even the healthiest of us may experience occasional viral infections, as viral strains are constantly mutating and easily evade immune memory and recognition.

To help manage upper respiratory tract infections, the herbs Andrographis paniculata and Picrorriza kurroa are useful for both treating and preventing viral illnesses by supporting immune resistance.

In clinical trials, 6 g of andrographis daily during colds has been found to be as effective as standard pharmaceutical antipyretic treatment for relieving sore throat and fever.

Further, when compared to placebo, andrographis significantly reduces the overall symptoms and length of respiratory tract infections.

NK Cell Regulation is a formula that combines 6 g of andrographis with picrorriza and 15 mg of elemental zinc per tablet, to provide acute relief during colds and flu. This formula can also be used to provide ongoing immune support throughout the winter months to prevent infection. This is the strongest tablet dose of Andrographis available.

ArmaForce is another remedy that is a perennial favourite in the immunity first aid kit, and deservedly so. With ArmaForce’s unbeatable combination of immune boosting herbs and supportive nutrients, those winter bugs don’t stand a chance. Andrographis, Echinacea, Olive leaf, Vitamin C and Zinc all work together to support immunity.

Clearing congested sinuses

During an infection, Antimicrobial Sinus Nasal Spray can to be added to a prescription to help clear congested sinuses with saline, xylitol and essential oils.

Available in a convenient nasal spray, this formula provides powerful local anti-inflammatory relief, whilst helping to manage microbial infection.

Relieving cough

Viral infection is responsible for 90% of all acute bronchitis infections, resulting in an acute, wet cough and often leaving you with a lingering dry, post-viral cough.

In either situation, there are natural remedies that can help.

Containing high levels of herbal extracts, Herbal Relief for Productive Cough provides expectorant, mucolytic and bronchodilating properties.

For those who are after the soothing feeling of a cough mixture, King To Cough Syrup is a very popular, old fashioned, natural formula. It does not contain the dangerous chemicals that are in other over the counter cough medicines.

Nutritional building blocks to fortify immunity

Vitamin C and zinc are rapidly utilised in the immune response to infection, making supplementation essential to support recovery and strengthen resistance to further infection.

These essential immune nutrients are involved in virtually every step of the immune response, including T-cell proliferation, natural killer cell activity, and neutrophil viability. 

Zinc with Vitamin C Powder combines these essential nutrients with beta-carotene, magnesium and vitamin B6 to support healthy immunity, reduce respiratory infections and promote healing and recovery.

Ultra Potent C Powder is another great tasting Vitamin C powder with zinc and added alpha lipoic acid to help regenerate and recycle your other antioxidants.

Probiotics to build gut defence

 As much as 80% of our immune system is located in the mucosa of the gut so it is little wonder that good gut health is important for maintenance of a healthy immune system.

Immune Enhancing Probiotic has been specially formulated to support healthy immune function.

See Emed’s Best Probiotics for other multi-strain probiotic formulae.


Emed’s Comment:

Yes, it’s that time of year again. When all the cold and flu remedies come out of the cupboard and all of us health care practitioners start harping on about how to keep your immune system primed.

Summarised below are some simple guidelines for effective cold and flu management this winter. Emed has seen droves of people proactively prevent the winter lurgy with the following:

• Reduce cold and ‘flu symptoms and boost immune resistance to infection: NK Cell Regulation or ArmaForce.

• Relieve cough symptoms: King to Cough Syrup, Herbal Relief for Productive Cough.

• Clear nasal congestion and infection: Antimicrobial Nasal Spray.

• Zinc and Vitamin C replacement: Ultra Potent C Powder or Zinc with Vitamin C Powder.

• Protective Probiotics: Immune Enhancing Probiotic


These formulas can be combined with dietary and lifestyle changes to help you get through this winter without recurrent infections.

This is a great time to boost your immune resistance against seasonal upper respiratory tract infections, so make sure you beat those winter bugs into submission!


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Recommended Reading:




Caceres DD eta al. Use of visual analogue scale measurements to assess the effectiveness of standardised Andrographis paniculata extract SHA-10 in reducing the symptoms of common cold. A randomised double blind-placebo study. Phytomedicine.1999 6(4):217-23

Chung KF, Pavord ID. Prevalence, pathogenesis and causes of chronic cough. Lancet 2008;371(9621):1364-74

Poolsup N et al. Andrographis paniculata in the symptomatic treatment of uncomplicated upper respiratory tract infection: systematic review of randomised controlled trials. J Clin Pharm Ther. 2004 Feb;29(1):37-45

Rink L, Gabriel P. Zinc and the immune system. Proc Nutr Soc 2000;59(4):541-52. Review.