Unfortunately, there is no pill or liquid you can take to cure the flu. Antibiotics, such as Penicillin, would not work because they only kill bacteria. The flu is caused by a virus.
A few approved antiviral drugs, however – including Flumadine, Relenza, Symmetrel and Tamiflu – have been shown to shorten the flu's duration.
Tamiflu (oseltamivir phosphate) and Relenza (zanamivir) are neuraminidase inhibitors. They block the action of a protein called neuraminidase. That protein sits on the surface of a cell and can help the influenza virus enter and leave the cell. The virus can be trapped after entering the cell with the help of neuraminidase inhibitors.
When the virus is stopped from spreading to other cells, Tamiflu and Relenza can shorten the duration of the flu infection and lessen its intensity.
Flumadine and Symmetrel also can shorten the duration of the flu and lessen its severity, but those only work against influenza A. These two antiviral medications work by stopping the virus from replicating. The four drugs are available through prescription only and do have potential side effects. They should be taken only under a doctor's advice.
The best advice for treating the flu? Plenty of rest and plenty of liquids. Some symptoms can be alleviated, at least temporarily, by over-the-counter cold and flu remedies. Aspirin may relieve aches and fever, but it should not be given to children and adolescents. They are at risk of Reye's Syndrome, a rare but potentially dangerous illness.