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Alternative Home Flu Remedies

ABC News' Jennifer Ashton reports:

If you're home sick with the flu, you may be able to find some relief by boosting traditional treatments with natural ingredients that can be found in a local vitamin store.

Elderberry, specifically the sambucol type: Some studies show that elderberry pills or extract shorten the duration of flu symptoms in adults. The pills and extract can also help ease swollen sinuses.

In the spice aisle at the supermarket, turmeric, a popular Indian spice, appears to have antiviral properties.

Curcumin, a substance found in the turmeric root, is believed to help prevent viruses from spreading in your body.

And when it comes to chicken soup, your mother may have been on to something. Scientific studies have shown that the homemade remedy can help clear up congestion.

One prominent journal reported that chicken soup actually affected the body's white blood cells. The journal said it held them back from creating congestion in the body - meaning less coughing and sneezing. And it's not something seen with any other soup.

Experts cautioned that complimentary treatments were no substitute for traditional medicine.

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