Common antiviral herbs include astragalus root, elderberry, ginger, olive leaf and oregano. Antiviral herbs are used to prevent and treat viral infections, such as the flu or common cold.
Although the herbs are not approved by the FDA to treat viruses, users of this range of plants believe each one has special properties. Ask a doctor about herbal interactions if you are taking any prescription medications.
Astragalus root purportedly boosts the immune system and works to prevent the flu and other viral infections. It is taken internally as a tincture or capsule or added to soups. Do not take it if you already have a fever.
Elderberry is used to fight the common cold and flu. It stimulates blood flow and produces sweating, which many believe helps cleanse the body. The raw plant has cyanide-producing products, so users consume it safely through an elderberry syrup.
Ginger is an antiviral and antibacterial used to prevent the common cold or shorten its duration. It comes in capsule form or can be added to tea or grated onto food.
Olive leaf is used as a treatment for the flu, the common cold or herpes, and it is not suitable for use by anyone who is pregnant.
For fighting bacteria and viruses, oregano users take it in capsule or oil form. When used in oil form, oregano can also be used on skin for various conditions or for cuts.