Less traditional cold cures are also favoured with one in seven swearing by the fortifying power of garlic while 22 percent boost their vitamin C by eating more oranges. Nearly one in four have boiled up a bowl of chicken soup when a cold threatens, and 42 percent have gargled salt water to help their sore throat symptoms to pass more swiftly. More unconventional pieces of health advice passed down from loved ones include drinking the water from a pot of boiled onions to help clear a chest infection, and downing orange peel tea to cure a cold in less than 24 hours.
The study, by Olbas, also revealed more than two thirds have flaunted conventional health wisdom to try a home remedy to treat an ailment.
And one in five have a recipe in their back pocket, passed down through their family, which they believe will help rejuvenate them when they are feeling ill.
Dr Roger Henderson, a family GP and Olbas expert, said: “Autumn is here and for millions of Brits, cold season has officially arrived.
“Thankfully, we have lots of tools at our disposal for dealing with the symptoms of the common cold, whether these are over the counter solutions or more holistic solutions passed down from family member to family member, or made popular across our health-obsessed culture.”
The study also found 62 percent of Brits believe most “old wives tales” are at least partly in scientific truth.
And when Britons are feeling under the weather, their first port of call for diagnosing their symptoms is a quick check-in with mum for her advice, followed by a web search.
Though when seeking advice on colds and other minor health concerns, the pharmacist is the opinion Brits trust most – more so than their own doctor.
As the cold season approaches, 48 percent of Brits admit they hold fast when they are feeling peaky, waiting for the symptoms to pass on their own.
More than seven in 10 would prefer to try and cure their cold with a home remedy than visit the doctor for assistance.
And nearly one in five will implement a home remedy to help with the sniffle, while 27 percent will head to the pharmacist or their GP for a medically tested common cold cure.
Brits are also keen to pass down their own home remedies and treatments, with one in two confessing to imparting some of their own health wisdom to friends and family.
It also emerged three in five of those polled, via OnePoll, believe you can catch a cold from having wet hair, and more than half think body heat is most often lost via the head.
Sam George, for Olbas, added: “When a cold strikes, we want to give Britons the power to breathe easy again.
“For four generations, come rain or shine, congested heads and blocked airways, Olbas has been there to give their customers the ability to breathe clearly and recover from their illness.”
Top 10 home cures passed down through the generations for a cold
1. Smell menthol to clear a blocked nose
2. Feed a cold and starve a fever
3. Put your head over a bowl of steaming water to ease congestion
4. Gargle salt water for a sore throat
5. Take vitamin C to cure a cold
6. Chicken soup can cure a cold
7. Drink a hot toddy before bed to get rid of a cold
8. Honey and lemon to soothe a sore throat
9. Avoid dairy to minimise congestion
10. Placed unpeeled onions in every room to soak up viruses
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