At Last! Sinus Relief that Works.

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Do you have a chronic sinus infection? When you blow your nose, is the mucus yellow or green in color? If so, then there’s an infection up there.

Unfortunately, Flowing Zen doesn’t always provide completely relief for chronic sinus infections.  That’s because it can be hard to get the energy up into the sinus cavity where the infection is hiding. Luckily, there’s another solution.

I learned this method in acupuncture college.  It’s not Qigong or Tai Chi, but it works.  Basically, you’re going to wash out your sinuses with a garlic-infused saline solution.

Garlic has several medicinal properties.  It is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal.  Because of the garlic infusion, this method works wonders even for those who have suffered from sinus problems for years. But don’t take my word for it.  Try the method for yourself and find out how well it works!

If you don’t follow these instructions to the letter, it’s going to hurt.  A lot.  So please read the instructions thoroughly, and follow them carefully.

Things You Will Need

  1. A neti pot.
  2. Non-iodized salt.
  3. Purified water (and a way to boil it).
  4. A clove of fresh garlic.
  5. A strainer.

You can buy the neti pot online, or at the local drug store.  Sometimes it is called a “nasal irrigation cup”.  To simplify your life, I recommend that you buy one of the combo packs that have the salt pre-measured.  This way, you don’t have to experiment, and you’ll know exactly how it feels when you measure the saline solution correctly.

Mastering the Neti Pot

Use the neti pot normally for a few days. Instructions should come with the pot.  Follow them carefully.  Basically, you’re going to dissolve the correct amount of salt into lukewarm water, and then pour the solution through one nostril while tilting your head.  When done correctly, the water will flow up into the sinuses, and then down and out the other nostril.

Yes, it’s weird.  But when you do it right, it feels great, and it works, so stop being a baby.

Do not use tap water for this.  Or if you must, then filter it and boil it.  There have been a few cases of a strange amoeba getting lodged in the sinus cavity.  This amoeba is only found in tap water.  To be safe, I always boil my water thoroughly, even if it’s filtered.

Make sure that you don’t blow your nose like normal after using the neti pot.  If you hold one nostril and blow, you run the risk of driving water up into the sinuses.  It’s not fun, so don’t do it.  Instead, you should blow gently through both nostrils.

The Garlic Infusion Method

Now that you’re a neti pot master, it’s time to add the garlic infusion.  This will supercharge the effectiveness of the neti pot.  On its own, the neti pot can be very effective, but it doesn’t always solve stubborn sinus issues.  Adding the garlic infusion will do the trick.

  1. Finely chop the clove of garlic.  Let it sit for about an hour.
  2. Place the garlic in a strainer. Make sure that NONE of the garlic pieces can fit through the holes in the strainer. Trust me, you don’t want bits of garlic in your sinuses.
  3. Pour filtered boiling water over the garlic (through the strainer) and into a cup. This is called an infusion.
  4. Let the infusion cool until it is lukewarm.  If it’s too hot, it will hurt when you pour it through your sinuses.
  5. Pour the lukewarm infusion into your neti pot.
  6. Add salt as usual (make sure to use the correct amount), and follow the standard method for using a neti pot. The only difference is that the water has been infused with garlic.
  7. There should be little to no pain if you do this correctly.  If there is pain, it is caused either by an incorrect amount of salt, or by pieces of garlic that got through the strainer.
  8. Repeat this process once in the morning and again at night until the sinus issue disappears.

Once you’ve solved your sinus problem, I recommend that you continue to use the neti pot once daily, but without the garlic infusion.  If you like, you can add the garlic infusion once in a while, just to keep things extra clean.  If you keep up the neti pot habit, you’ll be amazed at how free and clear your sinuses feel!  You’ll also get a huge boost to your Flowing Zen practice because your breathing will improve tremendously.

If you have questions, comments, or a success story, please post them below! 

Mindfully yours,
Sifu Anthony

I’m Anthony Korahais, and I used qigong to heal from clinical depression, low back pain, anxiety, and chronic fatigue. I’ve already taught thousands of people from all over the world to use qigong for their own stubborn health issues. I teach online courses, and also lead in-person retreats and workshops.

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35 Responses to At Last! Sinus Relief that Works.

  1. Mary Bast July 15, 2012 at 1:31 pm #

    It’s important that new users make sure the water for the infusion is clean. I use purified water or boiled tap water. Not all tap water is free of pathogens.

    • Sifu Anthony July 15, 2012 at 3:44 pm #

      Thanks Mary. I updated the post with that helpful tip.

  2. samantha June 28, 2013 at 10:21 am #

    I can never get on with the neti pot. The rinser is far better.

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais June 28, 2013 at 11:01 am #

      Whatever works for you, Samantha! Out of curiosity, what’s the “rinser”?

  3. Lonnie Tiegs July 7, 2013 at 5:50 am #

    I cannot believe this remedy is not more “out there” I was hospitalised 3x for sinus surgery, on antibiotics for 6 months, and my sinus infection raged on. Finding a reference on the website about garlic, out of desperation I tried adding strained crushed fresh garlic to my daily saline sinus rinse (not a neti pot, but a bottle which you squeeze to push the saline solution up one nostril and out the other). Within 4 days my sinuses where clear for the first time in three years. that was 18 months ago, last month I developed a head cold and my sinuses went off again. I had continued doing the daily saline washes, but added the garlic and within 3 days my sinuses were clear again. My ENT disparagingly asks me if I am still shoving “salad” up my nose!

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais July 7, 2013 at 1:13 pm #

      Thanks for the input, Lonnie. I totally agree. I’ve seen cases similar to yours that cleared up within a week or two of using the garlic rinse. Why aren’t powerful remedies like this more widely prescribed?

  4. Jennifer November 27, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

    We used to use the neti pot but switched over to the Nasopur system. We like it better, seem to get more of a good flush/rinse.

  5. Patrick November 27, 2013 at 5:09 pm #

    Sometimes the best cure is right in our pantry or back yard. But then there’s not much money – certainly not in the billions of dollars like some “cures” – to be made so it won’t be advertised as much as the medications at your local drug store.
    Thanks so much for this post sifu. Power to the people.

  6. Abe Sloan November 28, 2013 at 10:55 am #

    I am a woodworker and use a neti pot to clear sawdust from my nose. That has worked well, eliminating sore throats I used to get regularly. Never tried garlic, but will soon.

  7. Tracy January 10, 2014 at 3:41 pm #

    I have found this interesting and will try it. I have awful sinus issues, throbbing in my head, jaw ache, face ache, headache and I can feel the congestion accutely. 10 years of sheer agony and now facing surgery. I will revisit with an update when I have given it a go.

  8. Sonja Bermingham February 9, 2014 at 4:53 pm #

    Thanks for sharing! This week I am suffering with sinus congestion and so I am trying your ‘garlic infusion’ method. Does the garlic infusion kill bacteria in the sinus cavities? I did not know that garlic is a powerful healing agent. Do you know about a homeopathic Boiron product called Sinusalia? Both your method and the homeopathic remedy seem to be helpng to clear my sinus headaches.

  9. Lamesha March 1, 2014 at 7:12 am #

    My name is lamesha I live in bpt ct I had really bad breath for 10yrs and the first time I used this I felt so much better you saved me so much I am so happy to find this I wish this was out more but I will be trying to go on health boards and other thing to info people thank you so much

  10. Lamesha March 4, 2014 at 5:44 pm #

    It worked over the weekend and then nasty green mucus came back I think my ears are clogged

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais March 4, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

      You’ll probably need to do it twice a day to get rid of the infection. And make sure not to blow hard, which could cause the ears to feel clogged.

  11. Lamesha March 5, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

    But that can affect my sinuses for not draining

  12. Itai November 9, 2014 at 3:43 pm #

    Hi, I’ve been having a chronically congested nose for 4 years already,
    I’m going to try your method.

    Do you recommend using the Nelimed sinus rinse inside the cup all the time?

    Where can I get a small strainer for the garlic? How is it called?

    I really hope this will work since this is ruining my life. Thanks and all the best,

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais November 10, 2014 at 11:25 am #

      I’m not familiar with the Nelimed sinus rinse, so I can’t really comment.

      You can use any small strainer for the garlic. I have a metal one with a handle on it.

      Let us know how it works!

  13. Kim December 22, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    Thank you for this post. I have had a sinus issues for years. I have done the garlic flush without the saline 2x today. I used one clove, let it rest, then poured the boiling water over the garlic. I let it cool til just warm. When flushing it burns up in the top of my head. Is this ok?

    • Tony January 2, 2015 at 1:06 am #

      I had the same burning sensation, I’m thinking it’s just referred pain that’s coming from your nose and sinuses. I had tried eating garlic before but I like this more direct approach much better. Will update with results.

      • Sifu Anthony Korahais January 2, 2015 at 9:49 am #

        Tony, it shouldn’t burn from the garlic if you follow the instructions. Is it uncomfortable?

        • Tony January 2, 2015 at 11:35 am #

          It’s not extremely painful or anything but I did feel a slight ‘burning’ sensation. It was definitely different from using the normal saline solution. I’m excited to try it again.

        • Robert December 31, 2015 at 8:13 pm #

          Hi…very interesting. I would like to try but have heard that the garlic in nasal flush can be pretty painful. You mention that it will not be if the correct amount of salt is used but I can’t find the right amount of salt to use in the nedi pot. Thanks! Robert

          • Sifu Anthony Korahais January 1, 2016 at 11:18 am #

            If you follow the instructions, then there will be zero pain. It’s roughly ½ to 1 teaspoon of salt for each 16 ounces of warm water. This applies with or without the garlic infusion.

            • Robert January 1, 2016 at 12:30 pm #

              Perfect…thank you very much!

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais January 2, 2015 at 9:50 am #

      Hi Kim. It would be better if you follow the instructions, using the saline solution, chopping the garlic, etc.

  14. john January 7, 2015 at 4:12 am #

    I used a coffee filter to strain lol

  15. Ankush May 26, 2015 at 2:26 pm #

    Greetings, Will it help if i have nasal polyps? i am actually suffering from Nasal Polyps for past couple of years and especially pollen season gets really bad. Please let me know.
    Thank you so much
    My email address :

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais May 27, 2015 at 9:55 am #

      Unfortunately, I don’t have much experience with nasal polyps. I would recommend that you show my article to your physician and get their opinion.

  16. Igor January 5, 2016 at 8:26 pm #

    “Finely chop the clove of garlic. Let it sit for about an hour.” – Why it needs to sit for an hour?

    • Sifu Anthony Korahais January 12, 2016 at 8:51 am #

      Hi Igor. I don’t know why it needs to sit. That’s how I learned it. I suppose maybe to make the garlic less aromatic? I’ve gotten away with letting it sit for less than an hour. Try it if you’re brave!

      • Amber October 13, 2016 at 7:33 pm #

        You let the garlic sit because that’s how the antibacterial, fungal and viral properties come out. You should always crush the garlic and let it sit for at least 15 minutes before doing anything with it, even using it for cooking. Another thing for sinus issues is mixing a small amount of organic coconut oil into the saline mix as this is also all of the above but is not a “natural antibiotic” so much as garlic is

  17. Mar March 26, 2016 at 3:37 pm #

    Chop and rest any garlic onions etc for at least 10 min before cooking/eating to allow the natural healing compound allicin to develop.

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