Prevent Colds and Flus

sneeze cartoonNatural Cold and Flu Prevention

I’ve been getting many questions about how to prevent the flu from friends and clients as they go to work in schools, public and private offices, retail, etc. So here we go…

Keep the ick out!

Prevention is easier than curing.
Illness prevention and health support are hallmarks of alternative medicine. The key to prevention is to be methodical and consistent in your use of alternative medicines. This is a strategy of health support rather than blasting away at an illness that has already taken place.

Remedies to prevent cold and flu

I use a combination of cell salts, herbs, and essential oils.

The cell salts and herbs are things I take internally to support my already functioning immune system.
Essential oils are applied externally to fend off microbes and support my respiratory system. This approach to prevention is “two-pronged”- I want to keep myself healthy while reducing the load of microbes I need to deal with. I am aiming at a strong immune system that has less to deal with, so I stay healthy and vibrant all year long.

  1. I use herbs and cell salts to support my immune system.
  2. I use essential oils to reduce the number of microbes my system has to fend off.

Cell Salts

cell salts

cell salts are easy to use

These are highly dilute mineral salts- based on the 12 essential minerals.
The intention with cell salts is to supply the cells (the tiny invisible blobs that make up our body) with “bite-sized” minerals that are essential to their functioning. The theory is that happy cells manifest as a happy, healthy body.

Cell salts for cold and flu prevention:
Ferrum Phos and Kali Mur are taken throughout the season.

Ferrum Phos Cell Salt – If possible get Ferrum Phos at the 12X dilution. If that is not available, use the 6X dilution. Take 2 tablets, 3 times a day for the entire flu season.
Kali Mur Cell Salt –  Use Kali Mure at 6X dilution. Take 2 tablets, 3 times a day for the entire flu season.
(If you want to know what the “6X” means, click here.)

A great thing about cell salts is how easy they are to take. They come as little tablets. Just pop them under your tongue and let them dissolve. They are taken under the tongue in order to be absorbed easily into your body. Or, you can toss them into your water bottle and sip them throughout the day.

Herbs for cold and flu prevention

Echinacea flowers


Herbs are our original medicine, used by every culture of the world for illness prevention and treatment.
There are many great herbs, formulas, and companies out there. You can always consult a local herbalist for an individualized herbal recommendation that suits your needs uniquely. Another approach is to use an off the shelf product.


Planetary Formulas is a great company founded by Acupuncturists and Herbalists Michael and Leslie Tierra. Their formulas can be found in health food stores and on the web. Most importantly, they work!


A classic Chinese herbal formula for cold and flu prevention is called “Jade Wind Screen”. The basic idea is that the formula acts like an extra jacket, a “wind screen”, or “wind breaker” as we say in the west. This particular formula has been proven effective over thousands of years by the experience of herbalists and their patients. It is made of a 3 simple herbs.

Planetary Formulas call their version of Jade Wind Screen “Astragalus Wind Screen”.   Astragalus is one of the main herbs in the formula.

Astragalus Wind Screen comes in tablet form, so you can easily take these with you wherever you go.

Echinacea Defense Force is another great formula for prevention. Personally, this is the one I use more often.
Which is best for you? Read more about each formula to find out which one feels right.  I tried them both in order to pick my favorite.

Essential Oils for cold and flu prevention

These are highly concentrated plant oils from certain aromatic plants.
Very potent and great smelling, essential oils are easy to use. For cold and flu prevention, I diffuse them into the air in my office and home, add to them the bath, apply to my skin diluted in jojoba oil, and use them for steam inhalations. Using tiny amounts every day offers a great deal of protection from microbes in the environment.

Recommended Essential Oils:

  1. Eucalyptus, Eucalyptus Globulus
  2. Frankincense, Boswellia carterii
  3. Ravintsara, Cinnamomum camphora

The plan for natural cold and flu prevention

keep calm and stick to the planStart using these remedies as early as October in order to prevent cold and flu in the fall and winter. You need to boost your system before you catch a cold or flu!  Keep using them through the winter.

1. Cell Salts Ferrum Phos(12X or 6X dilution) 2 tablets, 3 times a day, Kali Mur (6X dilution) 2 tablets 3 times a day.

2. Astragalus Jade Wind Screen or Echinacea Defense Force – first month, take 2 tablets 2 times a day. After that, try dropping back to 1 tablet 2 times a day for maintenance. If you will be traveling, around sick people, or under stress, go back up to 2 tablets 2 times a day. Notice how you feel in order to find your optimal dose.

3. Essential Oils
Diffuse essential oils daily into the air
Apply a diluted essential oil blend when you are going out into public
Steam inhalations 2-3 times per week
Add essential oils to a warm bath 1-2 times per week

  • Eucalyptus globulus* – diffuse 20 drops into the air
  • Frankincense – add 2-5 drops into a hot bath and diffuse 20 drops into the air.
  • Ravintsara* – diffuse 20 drops into the air. 1 drop into warm water for steam inhalation. 2-5 drops into a hot bath.

How to do a Steam Inhalation:


Essential oil blend to apply to wrists and neck:
Add the following essential oils into 1 ounce of jojoba oil:

3 drops: Eucalyptus*, Eucalyptus globulus

5 drops: Frankincense, Boswellia carterii

5 drops: Ravintsara*, Cinnamomum camphora

**for children under 10 use Frankincense instead of Eucalyptus or Ravintsara

coat, boots, warm gloves Lifestyle adjustments to prevent cold and flu

  1. Wash your hands frequently
  2. Get plenty of rest
  3. Provide extra protection against the cold – use that hat, scarf, big coat and puffy mittens!

Where to get all this stuff

Cell Salts
Hylands brand is reliable and available in many health food stores and on the web. 

Ferrum Phos on the web
Kali Mur on the web

More about cell salts
How to use Cell Salts on the Big Tree Blog
Planetary Formulas Astragalus Jade Wind Screen – can be found in many health food stores and here on the web
Planetary Formulas Echinacea Defense Force – can be found in many health food stores and here on the web
More about herbs: Leslie Tierra’s  (Co-Founder of Planetary Formulas) fantastic book about using herbs to support your health:

Essential Oils
Essential oils on the web at Aromatics International
Diffuser – can be found in health food stores and here on the web

More ways to use essential oils:

Acupressure points to prevent colds and flus
Check out  “Acupoints for Cold and Flu Prevention” video on demand.

Posted in

Cindy Black

Cindy Black is the Founder of Big Tree School of Natural Healing and the author of Meridian Massage, Pathways to Vitality. She is appreciated for her ability to make the complex accessible, fun, and practical.


  1. Annette Lloyd on January 15, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Thank you Cindy – your easy way of explaining and teaching reaches me – and I am so thankful – have my salts on the counter now – (already have a cold – however, my body is moving it out!)

    • Cindy Black on January 15, 2018 at 3:08 pm

      Hi Annette,
      Glad you have the cell salts! To help kick out the cold, take 5 tabs of Ferrum Phos, then a half hour later take 5 tabs of Kali Phos – keep alternating back and forth for a few hours. This is also something to try at the very beginning of a cold – sometimes it helps to prevent it even then.
      Hope you feel better quickly!
      – Cindy

  2. Eva on January 15, 2018 at 6:29 am

    Many thanks, Cindy. Perfect timing as the Australian ‘flu is in full swing here in Ireland. Excellent advice as always.

    • Cindy Black on January 15, 2018 at 9:03 am

      Glad to offer some ideas – take good care of yourself!

  3. Abimbola Awosiyan on January 13, 2018 at 3:53 am

    Thank you Cindy! I enjoy your write ups! Keep me posted always! Bims.

    • Cindy Black on January 13, 2018 at 8:46 am

      Hi Bims,
      Thanks for writing, I appreciate hearing from you!

  4. Susan on January 12, 2018 at 1:24 pm

    Any suggestion for an alternative for the cell salts? Both have lactose in them, and I am allergic.

    • Cindy Black on January 12, 2018 at 8:04 pm

      Hi Susan,
      You might check out CellFood – I have taken it now and then. It is a liquid source of minerals, also very easy to use – you just add some drops into water.
      As far as I can see, there is no lactose in it. It was developed differently than cell salts, but I think they are very similar ideas. Here is a link for “regular cellfood” They also have one that has more silica in it.
      I encourage you to research it, see if it resonates with you. Here is the link to their website
      I am curious to know what you find out. If you do try it, please write back with your experience so that we can all keep learning together – thanks!

  5. Toni on January 12, 2018 at 11:09 am

    Preach on sister. This is all I do as I don’t take medications unnecessarily. The body knows how to heal itself and meds are made from these natural herbs and spices anyway.❤️

    • Cindy Black on January 12, 2018 at 11:50 am

      Thanks Toni – I’m with you!

  6. Genesis M.Roy, LMT, ISHA on January 12, 2018 at 10:29 am

    With all the Confusion surrounding the Flu Vaccine, which I have not taken in over 46 years and I have not caught the Flu … I have always looked for ways to keep my Immune System working … Alternative ways, haha, I think these suggestions should be termed, “Primary” ways … Blessings to you for always sharing your knowledge in the perfect timing … Tis the Season to be Protected … thanks, Cindy

    • Cindy Black on January 12, 2018 at 10:40 am

      Thanks Genesis – I agree, I’d love to rearrange the terms!

  7. Christine on January 6, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    ThankYou for the regular updates

  8. Cell Salts on January 6, 2018 at 3:28 pm

    […] 2 tablets of Potassium Chloride (6X) and 2 tablets of Ferrum Phosphate (12X) once a day to prevent colds and flu’s during the fall and […]

  9. Yolanda Cathcart on January 5, 2018 at 12:01 pm

    Thanks for sharing Cindy. I have to add cell salts to my regime for cold and flu prevention.
    Thanks for making learning interesting.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.