Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Homemade Cough Remedy

Homemade Cough Remedy recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen
After making it all the way through the holidays without a cough, a sneeze or a fever, cold season hit us like a freight train on New Year's Day. My boys were miserable and I started to feel it as well after a couple of days. I remembered saving this recipe to try last year, so I shook up a tiny little test batch and tested a spoonful on myself. Consider yourself warned, this is seriously spicy and potent enough to actually clear your head. Personally, I think it tastes better than any store bought syrup I've tried.

With only a handful of pantry ingredients and a few minutes effort, this jar of spicy honey-cider syrup was sitting on my counter. I was amazed at how well it worked to completely clear our congestion. My oldest son was willing to try it as well and I couldn't believe how quickly it worked on his cough. It cleared his throat and he slept solidly through the night. Over the counter cough medicines don't even accomplish that for us! (I didn't even consider giving this to my younger boys, because their reaction to anything at all spicy would outweigh any possible benefits.)

The powerful ingredients in this remedy are common everyday items: ginger, cayenne, cider vinegar and honey. Yet they work together to create a potent remedy for cold symptoms. It's definitely worth trying before turning to the medicine cabinet once again this winter.

The serving size (or dosage) will vary depending on the person. My 9 year old son was able to drink 1-2 teaspoons without a problem. A full tablespoon worked great for me.

Homemade Cough Remedy
recipe adapted from Good Food Matters
(printable recipe)

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (preferably Bragg's, if available)
2 tablespoons honey (locally produced raw honey is best, if available)
2 tablespoons water
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Place all the ingredients in a small jar and shake to combine. Leave at room temperature for a few days or place in the refrigerator for longer storage. Shake well each time, before using. The spices will not dissolve into the liquid. It will not be a thick syrup, it should remain watery. Take as needed and have a happy and healthy new year!


Homemade Cough Remedy recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen



ONE YEAR AGO TODAY: Ranch Style Chicken and Bean Soup

120 comments:

  1. Of course, I just got over a serious cough about two days ago! lol oh well, I'll keep this for next time.. cause I know there will be a next time!! Thanks for sharing, Mary!

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  2. I am DEFINITELY trying this. I've had a cough for the past week and my boyfriend keeps trying to get me to take cough syrup. And I refuse. But a homemade version...I am totally going to try!

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  3. Hi Mary, thanks for sharing this home remedy with your readers, and spreading the word. It really helps, doesn't it?

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  4. Thanks for this recipe! I am definitely going to try it the next time someone gets a cough!

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  5. What a great idea! I've never thought to make my own cough syrup before. I hope you are all feeling better now.

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  6. Well that looks good enough to spread on toast! Hope you are feeling better and I will put this in my "Mary's Awesome Recipe" file to try one day when needed :)

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  7. I seriously cannot wait to share this with my dad who has been suffering from a horrible cough for weeks! Thanks for sharing!

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  8. We definitely need this down here!

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  9. What a great idea! I'm going to pin this for the next cold I have!

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  10. Just made some! My oldest has had a nasty lingering cough so I figured why not? Will let you know how it goes! Thanks for sharing.

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  11. I have found that homemade concoctions are always the best. My mother used to add glycerin too.

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    1. What did the glycerin do?

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    2. Glycerin, like honey, coats and helps sooth. It often lasts longer than honey.

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    3. I WILL TRY THIS WHEN I GET A COLD. THIS IS A WHOLE LOT CHEAPER THAN THE STORE BRAND COUGH SYRUP.

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  12. Did anyone else use this and see positive results!?

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    1. Our family of six drinks this at the first sign of any sniffle/cough, we typically just add to hot tea. Our recipe is very similar. So far we have all stayed pretty healthy. We use two tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar, three tablespoons of raw honey & fresh grated ginger to taste - if heads are stuffy then we add the cayenne. Drink this once in the AM & once in the PM. :)

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    2. Yes, It really helps. Loosens up the mucus in chest & brings it up, I also take Mullein, with this.

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    3. My husband loves this stuff, since he is a smoker. When he gets sick you can hear the congestion in his chest and the coughing sounds the worst. But when I started to make this remedies he drinks it everyday. Cough is gone and congestion gone. The only thing I changed was the Cayenne 1/2 tsp. He just loves SPICY and Hot everything.

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  13. Hello!
    How much does this make?

    Have a Joyful Day :~D
    Charlie

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  14. I made up a batch of this yesterday as I can feel a cold coming on. So far, so good!

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  15. I made some for my mum, and here's the result: AWESOME. she coughed only once tonight, before she seemed like she was going to hack out her lungs!! :'
    ( I was so worried for her, I'm soo thankful for this! thank you! I'll be making some for my pastor and friends at school as well! :DD
    -Momo

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  16. Made it, loved it and added some mullein tincture to it for an even better anti-coughing effect! Thank you!

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    1. Here, forgot the link: http://healthymamainfo.com/2013/01/homemade-cough-syrup/

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    2. What is mullein tincture ? Thank you

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    3. Here is a link, Barb!

      http://www.everygreenherb.com/mullein.html

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  17. Could this be made into a larger batch? If so, what's it's shelf life?

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    1. Yes, it can easily be doubled or tripled. I'm not sure of the shelf life. It only takes a minute or so to make up a batch as needed, so I haven't make it in large amounts.

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  18. Tried this several days ago for the whole household - two with sinus infections and all three with rotten hacking coughs. The stuff is amazing. Even the four year old tolerated it, despite her "bleah" comment. We all slept much better and with nearly no coughing. Opens nasal passages as well. Thanks to you and to Nancy! :)

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  19. You just saved me a trip to the store! Thank you so much, this worked instantly!

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  20. My son has a cough with sinus problems the dr just gave me something for his nose gonna try this.......I don't have any cayenne pepper though :-(

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  21. Just whipped up another batch for all the people at work who sound like seals protecting their territory. I usually make a double batch and sub 1 tbsp water with lemon juice. It helps give a touch of citrusy goodness and hey, vitamin C.

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  22. I don't have Cayenne is there anything I can sub in its place? Could if grind down crushed red pepper flakes and use that? I have a horrid cold and it has dropped into my lungs which is harsh for me because I am asthmatic, I have been pretty much bed or chair bound for last 2 day because I cant breath, I need something that will break this crap up in my lungs and make the coughs productive.

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    1. If you are able to grind it into powder, then it would probably work. I hope this helps!

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  23. Thank you...this recipe gave me 8 hours sleep for the first time this week...I was coughing every 2 mins...after taking it...I coughed twice through 8 hours of sweet sweet sleep...Thnxs again....

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  24. Well i myself have had a nagging cough and some chest congestion. I have a prescription for cough medicine and have also tried over the counter to which neither has worked. so the last resort I am going to try this and we will see how it works. so far so good. so I did change the recipe a little and added a tablespoon of lemon juice to the mix. I did this as a separate mix so I actually have two. I will try them both and see how they work. thank you for sharing!!

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  25. This sounds interesting. Just found this on facebook, wish I had seen it earlier. I've had an asthma attack for almost a month, using 3 bottles or homeopathic cough syrup (Umcka and Boernicke and T?, and two Robitussin, with little effect as well as antibiotics, steroid injection and pills.

    I will try this one and keep it on hand. Love this type of recipe.

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  26. I'm anxious to try this...will def have on hand this winter. I love someone above's idea to swap the water for lemon juice. I'd also like to make up a test batch with the addition of mustard powder to help clear the sinuses even more.

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  27. I am allergic to.honey.what could I.use as a subsitute???

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    1. I'm not an expert, but honey is part of the treatment. You could sub maple syrup for a similar consistency and final product, but I'm not sure if it would give you the same result. It might be worth a shot though.

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    2. Actually, the honey and pepper are the "active" ingredients. Dr Oz had something similar on his program recently and he said there is something in the honey that is medicinal. He even said that you can use honey on raw wounds and it will foam a bit due to there being a low level of peroxide in the honey.

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  28. if you have a cough would the c.pepper burn your throat when you swallow it

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    1. It might. Cayenne has a lot of kick to it, so this is pretty hot. It's worth it to me though because it calms my cough.

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    2. I made a batch of this a few days ago for a nagging cough I've had for weeks along with sinus problems. This is awesome, I LOVE it! Works way better than the OTC stuff I usually buy. Thank you so much.

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    3. I have a tickle and a hacky cough. When I buy the store bought stuff I have symtom s of dizziness, memoryloss for weeks afterwards. With this I have to watch my Diabetic Blood Sugar!!. I have officially returned to you!

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  29. I used this because my son came down with a cold and his natural cough syrup had expired. The health food store I buy it from isn't "just down the road" so I tried this. Six months later, when I became sick with a cold, he said "Don't worry mom, if I get it, you can just give me some of that homemade stuff." (I use the syrup as a base for tea, because drinking tea helps ease the swollen ear canals).

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  30. Thank you so much!!! I was feeling sick all weekend and found this link accidentally. I actually came to your website for your crispy chicken thigh recipe. The chicken was delicious, and this stuff started to make me feel better almost immediately. Thank you again! You really uplifted my Sunday evening! I am definitely going to keep both recipes on hand!

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  31. Do you think that this will work with Strep Throat? Its to thw point i havent eaten in two days, because my throat is so swollen and i can hardly swallow.

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    1. It's worth a shot, Candi. Hope you feel better soon!

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  32. Giving this a shot got a kick to it added extra honey but it tastes good. Hopefully the kid will like it instead of regular store bought cough syrup

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  33. Honestly, I want to know where you got that adorable little jar to put it in. :)

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    1. PIMENTOS AT THE GROCERY STORE COME IN LITTLE CUTE, SIMILAR JARS.

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  34. Isn't it better to cough during the day and get that nasty crap out of you and take the awesome remedy at night so you can sleep?

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    1. I don't take anything to prevent a cough during the day for this very reason, unless I have somewhere to be where my incessant coughing is problematic... but unfortunately when I have these kinds of coughs/colds, as much as 90% of my coughing is at night. I've gone as far as taking a double dose of the only OTC cough medicine that works for me, Delsym, and still wake up every hour to cough up a storm. Without it, though, I wouldn't get any sleep at all. I've been online looking or home remedies that might work better. I'm currently fighting a pretty bad cough, if I weren't fresh out of the ACV I would be making it as we speak to try this out!

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  35. I have a warning and then another ingredient to add.

    DO NOT GIVE HONEY TO ANY CHILD UNDER 2 YEARS OF AGE. There is pollen and possible bacteria in it that can affect them. I trust and use a similar one myself

    For a really congested chest add a little brandy to the mixture. And sure to break a sweat if a fever is acompanying it.

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    1. I agree with no honey to children under 2 yr old. Dr Oz had this on his show recently and he made that warning also. In addition to pollen and possible bacteria, the warm water releases a small amount of peroxide which will actually foam a bit when put on a raw wound.

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    2. Well luckily I am 17. and that is completely understandable, i would more so say maybe under 3 or 4 though.

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  36. I tried it. It did seem to help with my cough.

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  37. I used this all last winter. It works great. I do add a bit of lemon juice as well. It is spicy for small children. I just give them a piece of bread to eat after they swallow it to take the heat out of their mouths.

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  38. I substitute the water for lemon and no kidding this will cure a cold in half the time.

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  39. Can not wait to try this, came down with this cold Wed!!!! :(:( :):)

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  40. I am sooooooooooooooooooooooooo gonna make a shopping list and make this because my cough makes me feel like I am ready to vomit a lung or something (well, just vomit)

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  41. I have a drink in the morning with honey, apple cider vinegar and sometimes ginger - will def try making this!

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  42. I've had a cold for almost 3 weeks that includes a cough. Made this last nite and tried it today. Was anticipating a strong vinegar taste, but it actually wasn't bad and thought, I could do this as a salad dressing and would like it. SUCCESS!! And I think my coughing is less too!! THANKS!!

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  43. I am not sure that I could handle the cayenne pepper.. I have ulcers and spicy stuff kills me.. any less evil sub?

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    1. Thanks for asking this question. I too have a ulcerative tummy. Any pepper or any thing with a sauce or spicey is very painful for me. Hope someone answers this ? I am sick in bed with a horrible cough, and inner ear infection. Sounds like I am going to cough up a lung. Throat is beyond raw right now. Can't sleep for coughing non stop. Nose is just pouring. Ugh !

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    2. I've heard that cinnamon worked really well for some people. Maybe try that or just leave out the cayenne. The vinegar and the honey should help! I hope you feel better soon.

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  44. I made this, it takes your breath away for a second or two but works to stop the coughing

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  45. Can this be given to children? Does the cayenne make it to hot?

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    1. The cayenne is definitely hot. Depending on their ages and heat tolerance, you might try making it with just a teeny amount of cayenne and adjust it accordingly.

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  46. Where did you get that jar? It's perfect!

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    1. I pick up jars all over the place, Greg. I think that jar was part of a space jar set from Ikea.

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    2. I have that spice jar set, they are the Rajtan spice jar's from Ikea :-) They're awesome

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  47. That sounds to be great. Since I am pregnant I cant take medicine. So i have to try that

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  48. I've done this and it works!

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  49. Yes it works. I've got a 5 1/2 yr old she hates the taste but drank 1tsp before bed=no coughing!!!! Followed recipe exactly as above in pic.

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  50. Works like a CHARM!

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  51. Making this again today. works so good.

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  52. disgusting, spicy, but it reduces my cough went from "feeling like i am going to puke" coughing to minor coughing

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  53. Is it really necessary to add spices?

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    1. It's up to you. We always add the spices and it works for us that way.

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  54. I also have been told that dissolving Black ball lollies in cider vinegar helps a cough too ;)

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  55. I have always used 2 tablespoons raw honey, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons brandy in a cup of hot green tea. Sip it.

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  56. My hubby-a family practice dr-prescribes this, minus the pepper but add 2 tbsp of bourbon-for his patients OVER Rx cough syrups! We have used it at home for years! I grew up on 1/4 cup honey, 1/4 cup bourbon plus juice of one lemon. Heated. Store in fridge but heat in microwave before using.

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  57. I will never use anything else!!!!.....gave this to my daughter before bed (hoping it would help us all get a few hours of sleep)....no coughing all night....gave her some before school ...teacher asked for the recipe ,my daughter hardly coughed all day.

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  58. I made this for my mom but used lemon juice instead of water. It worked even when the script didn't. I will always have this on hand from now on. My mom also suggested using orange juice concentrate instead of water. Both have vit c and will improve the flavor.

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  59. My hubby and I took it last night and it worked great! Love this stuff...thanks for the sleep we got last night

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  60. This is fabulous!! I actually rather liked the flavor! My 17 year old daughter has been coughing all night for 3 nights (and keeping me up) but this totally did the trick.
    I have had sinus congestion and pain and so I took a tablespoon also. Great stuff!

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  61. We had run out of the last batch I made and my 16 year old son came in and woke me around 1:30 this morning asking me to whip up another batch so he could stop coughing. His cough and congestion is currently from hay-fever. My boys swear by it. I find you need a drink of or something straight after it because it's quite hot.

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  62. Hubby's been coughing almost a week now & made some up last night & he took some & didn't hear him cough at all overnight & he took some this morning before going to work. Then I remembered I forgot to put the 2 Tbsps. of water in it..lol..but it is helping his cough.

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  63. I gave this to my daughter and the coughing and sore throat were gone,when the cough pearls and cough medicines didn't do anything for her cough

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  64. The cayenne pepper leaves a bit of burn but this stuff works really well when you need it.

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  65. This really helped my swollen throat. I also added lemon juice and coconut oil. I read that coconut oil helps the cold not to take hold of you. Thanks for posting this.

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  66. I just made a batch for the upcoming winter. I was having a sore throat coming on and took some. It does really work. Thank you for sharing and have a Happy Holiday!!!

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  67. It's works! I make my second batch, and my chest congestion y 95% gone,

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  68. I'm sad bc I made it and it didn't help..however I get bronchiospasms (sp) so maybe I was coughing from those and not a cold.
    Patty

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  69. I gave this to my daughter who is almost 4 (just two teaspoons) and she didn't have any problems with the spice at all. She did say it was a little yucky, so I gave her a tablespoon of raw honey to wash it down and she was fine, and it worked GREAT! She has had a TERRIBLE cough the past few days (she gets like this every year around this time and the doctors always tell me it's "croup" or a virus etc. and there is "nothing" they can do), and the prescription meds they gave me weren't helping at all, so we tried this and some sleepytime tea with lemon and she has stopped coughing and is fast asleep and no more wheezing! Thanks for the recipe!

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  70. This did not work for me, but then again nothing does. Doctor gave me a prescription & that didn't even help. I guess I just have to ride it out again.

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  71. I'm allergic to apple cider vinegar could I sub it for apple juice?

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    1. It's certainly worth a try. I'd probably swap it with lemon juice instead though. I hope that helps!

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    2. If you're not allergic to all vinegars, you could try red or white wine vinegar or rice vinegar if you can get it in your area. They all have the same percentage of acetic acid.

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  72. Amazing stuff!! 24 hours after first use my cold and sore throat gone. Thanks for posting this!

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  73. Tried this last night, was really gross tasting but..... It worked!

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  74. I made this and it works almost instantly! Thanks

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  75. I made some of this tonight. I'm on the 4th day of a flu-like sickness and am starting to feel better. The worst part for me has been the coughing. I'll let you know how it goes. I took about a tablespoon. It burned, but not any worse than another recipe for strep throat that I use also for colds that includes cayenne, pepper, garlic, and honey. If this works as good, I may forgo the other recipe because the garlic is so overwhelming.

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  76. I did make the cough syrup and it worked wonders for me since I live in the Caribbean and the weather here got windy and really humid really fast. Thank you so much for sharing!!!!

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  77. I was very skeptical that this would work. I had been coughing for hours before falling into a fitful sleep over the last week, even taking honey to soothe the throat and sleeping in a chair.
    Well, I took one tablespoon of this before bed and was able to fall asleep with no coughing fits and just a few little coughs.
    I am happy to say this worked wonderfully.
    Thank you!

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  78. This sounds amazing! but I have a 2 year old and a 6 year old that cant even sleep for coughing! I see that you should not give it to a 2 year old...so what can I use for him? Please tell me there is something I can use! Feel so bad for him! Thanks for any info!

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    1. The one thing that used to help with my kids was to rub Vicks on their backs and the bottom of their feet as well as their chest. It's an old remedy, but it did seem to help. The idea, I was told back then, was that the lungs are actually closer to your back than your front. I still have my husband rub my back with Mineral Ice when I get a cold and it seems to help when I am congested. If his throat is sore, you might try giving him Coke and potato chips, it can help with kids that are too young to gargle salt water.

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  79. I've been congested for 3 days and the cough just began last evening and progressing today ... I am heading to the kitchen NOW to make this! Thanks for the post!

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  80. Have had a nasty cough for two weeks. OTC cough syrup has high fructose corn syrup so sure don't want that. Going into kitchen to try this stuff.

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  81. Dad finished his 5th round of chemotherapy for lymphoma and developed a nasty, sleep-stealing cough. Just gave him some of this and he said that he could feel it working already. Will post again in a couple of days with an update, but here's keeping my fingers crossed! He's been through enough already.

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  82. Just made it and took a spoonful. Woooah ! very spicy! can feel it working already

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  83. I came looking for a recipe like this because I have a bad cold with a bad cough, the prescription cough syrup I was given doesn't seem to be working and I can only take if every 4 hours. I didnt have cayenne pepper but i had all the other ingredients. Just took a dose and will let you know how it goes.

    thanks for posting the recipe

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  84. I made a batch of this but added a few things...Lemon juice, turmeric and some coconut oil. Not only does it work but it seems that adding these other ingredients makes it taste great!!

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  85. I have made this for a few members of my family & they said it definately worked for them. My aunt has had a cough for a while & the medecine the dr prescribed ($30) didn't work so I made this yesterday & she took it before going to bed & rested all night where the night before she didn't sleep much at all from all the coughing she had done.

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