Natural remedies for asthma
Asthma cannot be cured completely but it can be managed by adopting several treatments and medications. Apart from medications, there are some natural home remedies which are used in the treatment of asthma. Some of them are discussed below.
A number of herbs are known to relieve the symptoms of asthma. Some of the herbs are listed here:
Garlic has anti-inflammatory properties and it is used as a natural remedy for many diseases especially cardiovascular disease. Garlic helps to:
- Clear the congestion in the lungs
- Reduce the inflammation of the airways
- Provides quick relief from asthma symptoms
Boiling some garlic in milk and taking it before going to bed everyday helps in relieving the symptoms of asthma.
Like garlic, ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties and these two foods are the most commonly used home remedies for asthma. Consumption of ginger on a regular basis helps keep the respiratory tract healthy.
Ginger helps to:
- Relax the airway muscles
- Regulate calcium intake (which relieve the constriction and provide relief in asthma)
Grate and boil some fresh ginger in water. Add honey after straining the water. Drinking this herbal tea two to three times in a day provides relief from asthma. It can also be consumed by chewing a small piece of fresh ginger.
Onions have anti-inflammatory properties and are used by asthmatics. Onions help to:
- Clear the air passage
- Reduce the inflammation
Onions can be eaten raw as a salad or can be added to the vegetables. People with asthma should include onions in their daily diet.
Turmeric has anti-allergic properties and is used to treat most of the allergies including asthma. Curcumin is the main component of turmeric and this helps to relieve the symptoms of asthma. Turmeric helps to:
- Modulate the inflammatory response of the body
- Alleviate the inflammation of the airways
Turmeric is taken with warm water thrice a day to keep asthma under control.
Khella is also known as Bishop’s weed. In Ayurveda treatment, this herb is often used for the treatment of asthma, bronchitis and heart disease. It has anti-histamine and antispasmodic properties. Khella helps to:
- Prevent allergic asthma
- Dilate the constricted bronchioles
Khella tincture is added to the water and is taken three to four times a day. The dose is continued for a couple of weeks to notice the benefits. It is a preventive remedy for asthma and is not used in asthma attacks.
Parsley leaf serves as a natural remedy for an asthma cough. It helps to:
- Soothe the throat and chest congestion
Parsley leaves are boiled in water and the mixture is consumed after adding some honey to it.
Honey is the oldest and most natural home remedy for breathing problems. It is also an herbal ingredient that is used in almost all of the cough and cold remedies. Honey helps to:
- Sooth an irritated throat
- Remove phlegm from the throat
- Calm a cough
- Alleviate the symptoms of asthma
Honey is mixed with a hot drink for relief in asthma. It is also consumed with cinnamon powder before going to bed.
Coffee is the quickest antidote for asthma. Caffeine is found in coffee and other drinks like black and green tea and it is helpful in treating asthma. Caffeine helps to:
- Improve breathing function in people with asthma
- Eases up the constricted airways
- Control asthma attack in absence of inhaler
Hot coffee is consumed to get immediate relief from asthma.
Vitamin D and Vitamin C are the vitamins used in the treatment of asthma. Vitamin D is anti-inflammatory and helps to:
- Alleviate asthma symptoms
- Enhance the body's innate antimicrobial response
Vitamin C helps to:
- Alleviate exercise-induced asthma symptoms
- Improve the functioning of the lungs
A tablet of each of these vitamin supplements is taken every day to get relief from asthma.
In asthma cases, essential oils relax the muscles around the bronchi and reduce the irritation and inflammation. Thus, the air flows through the airways freely. It also decreases the production of excess mucus.
Eucalyptus oil is used as a natural remedy for a number of conditions. The vapors of this oil can help the people with breathing problems like asthma or bronchitis. It helps to
- Relieve congestion
- Treat a blocked nose
Eucalyptol is the main component of eucalyptus oil and it helps to break down the mucus. Four to five drops of eucalyptus oil are added to a bowl of hot water and the vapors are inhaled to get the best results.
Lavender oil is the most widely used essential oil. It is known for its relaxing and sedative properties but in asthma, it helps to:
- reduce the inflammation of the airways
- control mucus production
- soothes the air passages
- strengthens the immune system
Lavender oil is added to the hot water and the steam is inhaled for relieving the symptoms of asthma. It is done once every day for best results.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has sedative, expectorant, decongestant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory characteristics and is used by the patients to treat asthma. This oil helps to:
- relieve the wheezing and coughing
- eliminate the excess mucus
- reduce the inflammation in the airways
- treat any infections that are present in the respiratory system.
In order to get relief from asthma, dip the face cloth in the warm water completely and wring out the excess. Pour few drops of the essential oil randomly on this cloth and inhale the vapors until the cloth comes back to room temperature. The process is repeated for a few times until the patient feel better.
Kalonji oil is also called Black Seed Oil. This essential oil is used in the treatment of most of the diseases including bronchitis and asthma as well.
It has anti-inflammatory properties which are very essential in the treatment of asthma. The main components of black seed oil are phytonutrients, omega-6 fatty acids, phospholipids and antioxidants. The oil has anti-inflammatory effect on the body. It helps to:
- reduce inflammation
- relieve sinus problems and associated skin conditions (like eczema)
- Boost immunity
- Inhibit allergic asthma reactions
Five parts of olive oil are mixed with one part of black seed oil. The concoction is rubbed onto the chest and back to get some relief from asthma. The vapors of two oils can also be inhaled after heating them.
Oregano oil has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. It helps to:
- cleanse the lungs and the air passages
- make the mucus thin
- eliminate infection-causing bacteria and viruses
Put the essential oil in the diffuser and inhale the vapors. It can be done every day to keep asthma symptoms at bay.
Mustard oil is one of the best emergency home remedies. The mustard oil used in asthma treatment is the fatty oil containing isothiocyanates made after pressing the mustard seeds. This is different from mustard essential oil (medicinal oil sold in small quantities that cannot be applied directly to the skin).
Mustard seed oil helps to:
- provide relief from an asthma attack
- help open the air passageways
- improve the lung function
A mixture of warm mustard oil and salt is massaged into the chest to relieve the symptoms.
Essential oils are not monitored by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). Therefore, it is important to choose a good and well-known brand for purity, safety and quality. Essential oils may also cause an asthma attack in people who are sensitive to chemical smells. Therefore their usage should be in proper guidance of the doctor.