The flu is a viral infection; so antibiotics for treating bacterial infections are powerless and cannot be used to tackle this illness. Instead, you could try out these alternative treatments that might be effective in preventing the flu or managing its symptoms. Here are nine natural yet effective ways of handling the flu.

Blow your nose
When you have mucus, it’s best to get it out of your system. So blow your nose often, but be careful to not blow too hard. It is best to close one nostril gently with your index finger while blowing out through the other one. Repeat the process with the other nostril, and do this gently a few times throughout the day.

Take hot showers
Hot steamy showers clear your nasal passages and protect you from chills associated with flu. Stimulating blood circulation can help loosen chest congestion too. Hot water also washes away germs and eases muscle ache.

Stay warm
It is best to avoid cold environments because less humidity in the air allows the flu-causing influenza virus to thrive for longer. So avoid air-conditioned rooms and air travel when possible and stay in a warm and comfortable zone at home.

Get adequate rest
Getting enough rest for a few days can help you cope with the fatigue associated with flu. It allows your immune system to become stronger and fight against the symptoms of this condition. It also keeps stress at bay which could worsen the immunity otherwise.

Keep your head raised
Make sure you use an extra pillow under your head to keep it in an elevated position. This position keeps the nasal passage open and reduces congestion.

Use anti-viral salves
Anti-viral salves with ingredients like camphor, eucalyptus, or menthol help ease nasal congestion and open up the nasal passages. You could apply it under your nose or on the soles of the feet.

Drink warm liquids
Have warm water or flavored tea from time to time to keep yourself hydrated when you have the flu. Drinking warm liquids frequently replenishes the fluids lost by the body, especially if you have dehydration or fever because of the flu.

Gargle with salt water
Gargling with warm salt water two or three times a day helps soothe a sore throat and reduces the severity of the respiratory infection caused by the flu.

Eat healthily
Ensure you consume a nutrient-rich diet every day, especially when you want to prevent or fight the flu. Your diet must contain foods like probiotics, garlic, ginger, bell pepper, carrots, blueberries, elderberry, shallots, black or green tea, and ginseng.

But a word of caution — you should not rely on these home treatment methods alone to cure the flu, especially if you are at risk of developing complications due to this condition. You must make sure that you seek the advice of a qualified doctor at the earliest.