A Natural Remedy for your Sore Throat

Nov 6, 2014 at 3:43 p.m. ET

I can almost guarantee that you're going to get a sore throat at some point this cold/flu season. The stabbing, burning, can't swallow feeling is one of the most uncomfortable things you can experience while sick.

What's the cause of all that irritation? Usually, it's inflammation. Inflammation can be the result of a virus or bacteria and leads to swelling, pain and discomfort. While a virus will eventually resolve with immune supportive treatments, bacteria can require a stronger intervention. If you're dealing with something more serious, like strep throat, you'll want to look for key signs and symptoms. The absence of a cough, fever, palpable lymph nodes in the neck and visible white patches in the back of the throat all point towards a bacterial strep infection. You should seek medical care immediately if you suspect you might have strep throat.

A benign sore throat is fairly common and there are plenty of soothing home treatments to help manage it. A warm salt water gargle and hot honey and cayenne tea are a couple of my favorites. A lesser known home remedy that works wonders is a mixture of turmeric and honey. It's a popular spice in Indian cooking and is well known in Ayurvedic medicine as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic.

This simple remedy is easy to make and provides almost instant relief for a sore throat. Honey, like turmeric, is a natural antiseptic and its thick quality coats the throat. Turmeric has a pungent and bitter taste that is less intense when paired with honey. The best ratio is 3:1; three parts honey to one part turmeric.

This recipe can be used for children and adults and can be added to warm water for a soothing winter wellness tonic.