Each year after Chinese New Year, many people I know would be down with sore throat. Be it due to over indulgence in cookies, fried keropok (crackers) and Mandarin oranges. It is made worse with insufficient intake of water and the scorching hot weather that usually accompanies the festive season.
Note: I find that Mandarin oranges would cause a lot of phlegm and sore throat therefore I usually keep my consumption of Mandarin oranges to the bare minimum.
To cure sore throat, the snake grass herb (蛇草) is very effective. Below is a picture of the snake grass (蛇草) we have in our garden:
It is quite easy to obtain the herb through asking around Chinese elders who grow their own herbs and plants. If you see an uncle or auntie who loved to grow herbs, you can inquire if they have the snake grass and give the plant to grow or a few pieces of leaf to help with your sore throat. The plant also grows quite easily and can be easily maintained. We usually water it with leftover kitchen waste like used tea leaf and fruit peels.
Note: The snake grass taste VERY BITTER. The bitterness remains long in the mouth. But I take it because it is very effective in curing sore throat. Just a few sips from the water soaked in snake grass and my sore throat would almost disappear immediately.
1. Pluck a few leafs (just two or three leaf are enough), wash it clean and place in a cup of boiling water:
2. Wait for the water to cool down a little and drink the water (so that it does not burn the mouth). Take it as hot as you can swallow. You would feel relief almost immediately.
Alternatively, you may pluck some leafs, place them in a plastic bag and store in the freezer. When required, take defrost the leave and then place them in a glass of hot boiling water.
Since the herb is very bitter, you may want to get ready a sweet or sour plum to help you lose the bitter aftertaste in your tongue.
In Thailand, the snake grass is made into capsule and marketed as Fa Thailai Chon, a very effective medicine for sore throat.