With fall fast approaching and the weather turning cold, you may be looking at cold and flu supplements once again. More and more people are turning to natural remedies in search of a healthier, not to mention cheaper, way to beat cold and flu. With so many options out there, however, choosing the right ones can sometimes be overwhelming.

Echinacea is very common in Eastern medicine. It is also by far one of the most popular, and well known, herbal supplements on the market. It is widely available in both pill and liquid form. The question is does it work? Echinacea is designed to be an immune system booster. With that being said, taking it in the middle of an existing cold may not be as helpful as you hope. It works best when combined with vitamin C, as a preventative measure. Try taking Echinacea pills with a glass of orange juice every morning to give yourself a head start.

Atstragalus is also very common in Chinese medicine, and has been scientifically proven to boost immune response in lab animals. It too is widely available, and you can find it in herbal cold medicines as well as in pill form. Do be careful to follow the package directions, concentrations vary by manufacturer.

P. Sidoides has been widely used in southern Africa to treat respiratory problems and coughs. A test in Europe proved it to help with sore throats and bronchitis. It is suggested that you take this when you think you have caught cold, and for forty-eight hours after your symptoms go away.

Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, loved Elderberry and thought it was the cure for nearly anything. It turns out that he was at least partly right. It is the only herb that has been proven to actually ease cold and flu symptoms as well as shortening the duration of illnesses. It is available in pills, liquids, combinations and tinctures.

Along with the herbs listed above, you could also try eucalyptus, which is great for clearing congestion. German chamomile promotes relaxation and aids in the healing process through sleep. Siberian ginseng can help the body recover from an illness. Finally, zinc it is widely believed to be one of the best immune system supplements available.

A cold or flu can make you feel miserable. Tried and true herbs and vitamins such as elderberry, zinc and echinacea may help you stay healthy or get better sooner.