Nothing puts a damper on the holiday festivities more than catching a cold. Not only that, the sneezing, coughing, sore throat, and runny nose are an incessant burden on your daily routine.

But instead of running out to the pharmacy every time you feel a cold coming, head to your pantry instead. You’d be surprised at just how many remedies you already have lying around your kitchen.

Here are six natural alternatives to getting your health back on track.

Dark leafy greens
These immune-boosting whole foods produce proteins that help protect cell walls from invaders and lymphocytes (aka cells that destroy foreign or infectious organisms). Whether you choose spinach, kale, or other leafy greens, one thing holds true: the darker the greens, the higher its nutritional content.

Vitamin C and D
Vitamins can help boost the immune system and stop a cold before it starts. You can take supplements (a recommended 500 to 2000 milligrams every two hours), or you can also get the necessary amount of vitamins from what you eat. Berries, oranges, kiwis, tomatoes, and bell peppers are high in vitamin C while fatty fish like tuna and salmon, as well as cheese, milk, and eggs, are rich in vitamin D.

Licorice root tea
Known as “sweet root,” licorice tea has been used as medicine for thousands of years and is sweeter than sugar. It acts as a soothing coating agent known as demulcent while also helping rid the throat of phlegm. This traditional remedy is perfect for a cough and tastes great too, so why not give it a go?

Apple cider vinegar
At this point, what can’t ACV do? Apple cider vinegar helps to alkalize the body, which helps the body more effectively fight off viruses. It might not taste great, but it sure does work. Try mixing two tablespoons of ACV with two tablespoons of honey, lemon to taste, and hot water for a cold-busting remedy.

This common kitchen ingredient contains antioxidant, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties that fight bacteria and viruses. It also relieves the irritation of a sore throat and helps boost the immune system. Just make sure it’s local and raw for the most health benefits.

Known for its strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, this superfood helps fight coughs, colds, and congestion. Add it to your milk for a warm turmeric latte or use it as seasoning the next time you grill veggies or lean meats.

xx, The FabFitFun Team