Asthma is a lung disease that causes difficulty breathing. Asthma can be either acute or chronic. Asthma attacks occur when there is an obstruction in the flow of air in the lungs.
The exact cause of this disease is not known but it can be triggered by allergies, air pollution, respiratory infections, emotions, weather conditions, sulfites in food and certain medications. Common symptoms include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath and chest tightness.
There are many medical treatments for asthma. Some simple natural remedies can also provide relief from symptoms.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for asthma. Also, consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.
1. Mustard Oil
When having an asthma attack, massaging with mustard oil can help clear the respiratory passages and restore normal breathing.
- Heat some mustard oil with a little camphor.
- Transfer it in a bowl and when it is comfortably warm, gently rub it on the chest and upper back and massage.
- Do this several times a day until the symptoms subside.
Ginger is a well-known natural treatment for various ailments including asthma. Researchers have found that it can help reduce airway inflammation and inhibit airway contraction.
Plus, studies indicate that it has compounds that may enhance the muscle relaxant effects of certain asthma drugs.
- Mix equal quantities of ginger juice, pomegranate juice and honey. Consume one tablespoon of this mixture two or three times a day.
- Alternatively, you can mix one teaspoon of ground ginger in one and a half cups of water and take one tablespoon of this mixture at bedtime.
- Cut one inch of ginger into small pieces and add it to a pot of boiling water. Let it steep for five minutes, allow it to cool down and then drink it.
- To detoxify your lungs, prepare a fenugreek decoction by boiling one tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water and mixing one teaspoon each of ginger juice and honey in it. Drink this solution every morning and evening.
- You can also eat raw ginger mixed with salt.
The nutritional properties of figs promote respiratory health and help drain phlegm and alleviate breathing difficulties.
- Wash three dried figs and soak them in a cup of water overnight.
- In the morning, eat the soaked figs and drink the fig water on an empty stomach.
- Continue this home treatment for a couple of months.
The following garlic remedy can help clear congestion in your lungs during the early stages of asthma.
- Boil two or three cloves in one-quarter cup of milk.
- Allow it to cool to room temperature and then drink it.
Onions have anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce constriction of the airways when suffering from asthma. Also, the sulfur content in onions helps decrease inflammation in the lungs.
Simply eat raw onions to clear your air passage ways for better breathing. If you cannot bear the taste of raw onions, try eating cooked onions.
The caffeine in regular coffee can help control asthma attacks because it acts as a bronchodilator. Hot coffee helps relax and clear the airways to help you to breathe easier. The stronger the coffee, the better the result.
But try not to drink more than three cups of black coffee in a day. If you do not like coffee, you can opt for a cup of hot black tea. Do not use caffeine as a regular treatment though.
7. Eucalyptus Oil
Pure eucalyptus oil is an effective treatment for asthma symptoms because of its decongestant properties. Research indicates that it has a chemical called eucalyptol which can help break up mucus.
- Just put a few drops of eucalyptus oil on a paper towel and keep it by your head when sleeping so that you breathe in the aroma.
- You can also put two to three drops of eucalyptus oil in a pot of boiling water and breathe in the steam. Try to take deep breaths for faster results.
People with asthma often have low levels of vitamin C. Lemons are rich in this vitamins and antioxidants that can help reduce asthma symptoms.
Squeeze the juice of half a lemon in a glass of water and add some sugar according to your taste. Drink this regularly to reduce asthma attacks.
Oranges, papayas, blueberries and strawberries are also rich in nutrients that help minimize asthma symptoms.
Note: Avoid using bottled lemon juice. Also, do not take citrus fruits during asthma attacks if they worsen your symptoms.
9. Carom Seeds
Carom seeds, also known as Bishop’s weed and ajwain, can also be used to treat mild asthma as it acts as a bronchodialator by dilating the bronchial tubes in the lungs.
- Boil one teaspoon of carom seeds in some water and inhale the steam, as needed. You can also drink it.
- Alternatively, heat a handful of carom seeds wrapped in a piece of cotton cloth in a microwave for a few seconds. When it is comfortably hot, place it on your chest and neck until it cools. Repeat daily until you are satisfied with the results.
- Another option to heat a paste of carom seeds and jaggery and eat one or two teaspoons of this paste twice daily for a few days or until you get relief. This remedy is not recommended for diabetics.
Honey is one of the oldest natural cures for asthma. The alcohol and ethereal oils in honey help reduce asthma symptoms.
- Just inhaling the smell of honey produces positive results for some people.
- You can also mix one teaspoon of honey into a glass of hot water and drink it slowly about three times a day.
- Before going to bed, swallow one teaspoon of honey with one-half teaspoon of cinnamon powder. This will help remove phlegm from your throat and allow you to sleep better.
- Try to identify your asthma triggers and avoid them. Steer clear of allergens, irritants and pollutants in the air, and respiratory infections.
- Eat herbs and spices like rosemary, sage, oregano, ginger and turmeric in your cooking.
- Eat at least two servings of cold water fish like salmon, cod, mackerel, and herring a week. You can also take omega-3 supplements after consulting your doctor.
- Include more fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet. Nutrients like magnesium, selenium beta-carotene, and vitamins C and E can help improve lung function.
- Avoid eating processed and packaged foods with artificial food additives and preservatives. The chemicals may trigger asthma attacks.
- Restrict your intake of milk and dairy products if you are allergic to milk proteins or have lactose intolerance due to lactase deficiency. Those who do not suffer from these problems, however, can take milk as the fats in whole milk tend to have a protective effect against asthma symptoms.