Smoking causes many health problems for the smoker. One of the major problems is the build up of toxic material in the body and in particular in the lungs. This toxic material is an irritant that causes inflammation and the breakdown of lung tissue. Stopping smoking is the only treatment, but herbs are able to assist the body to remove toxic material. Herbs are also able to provide relief from the tension and stress that is often experienced during the quit smoking process.
The following herbs provide a range of benefits that can be useful when you quit smoking. They can assist in:
- lung cleansing thus helping you to breathe more easily.
- liver and kidney cleansing so that the toxins built up in the body because of your smoking can be removed.
- enabling you to stay calm and relaxed — so that you can take control of your life.
- improving the health of your cardiovascular system with will help with healing.
Herbs that can assist during and after quitting
Herbs are not the only assistance that you need to quit smoking. For comprehensive assistance through the whole process join Growerz.com quit smoking program — they will help you reclaim your life.
Coltsfoot (aerial) Tussilaga farfara.
Coltsfoot combines an expectorant effect with an anti-spasmodic action. There are also useful levels of zinc in the leaves and this is useful for its anti-inflammatory effects. Coltsfoot:
- may be used in chronic or acute bronchitis, irritating coughs, whooping cough and asthma.
- the expectorant effect makes it useful in any respiratory condition, including the chronic states of emphysema.
Elecampane (root) Inula helenium.
- is used as a specific for irritating bronchial coughs or whenever there is a copious amount of catarrh formed, such as in bronchitis or emphysema.. The herb has an expectorant that is accompanied by the stimulating effect of the essential oils. It also has an anti-bacterial effect.
- can be used in asthma and other allergic conditions such as hay fever. It has also been used in the treatment of tuberculosis.
Notes on elecampane
- Small amounts used in cooking are generally safe but do not use internally in medicinal doses during pregnancy.
- Elecampane combines well with coltsfoot, white horehound, pleurisy root and yarrow for respiratory conditions.
Fenugreek (seed) Trigonella foenum-graecum.
- has great use in local healing and reducing inflammation
- can be taken to help bronchitis and as a gargle to sooth sore throats. An infusion from the seeds can reduce a fever.
- contains bitters which make it useful in soothing disturbed digestion.
- drunk as an infusion made from the seeds acts as a general tonic.
Horehound (aerial) Marrubium vullgare. It is also called white horehound.
Horehound is a valuable herb for the treatment of bronchitis where there is a non-productive cough. It combines the action of relaxing the smooth muscles of the bronchus whilst promoting mucus production and thus expectoration.
Hyssop (aerial) Hyssopus officinalis.
Hyssop has an interesting range of uses that are mainly associated with its anti-spasmodic actions. Hyssop:
- can be used in coughs, bronchitis, and chronic catarrh. It is useful as a hot infusion in the early stages of colds and influenza. The infused oil can also be rubbed on the chest for a chesty cough. Hyssop can also be combined with eucalyptus or thyme oil or both.
- can be used in anxiety and stress states and it has been used in the treatment of hysteria and petit mal (a from of epilepsy – but be careful of strong infusions).
- as an infusion of the flowers or leaves or both has uplifting and stimulating properties.
Licorice (aerial & root) Glycyrrhiza glabra.
Licorice is a remarkable herb with an affinity for the endocrine system.
It has a similar structure to the hormones of the adrenal gland giving it effects similar to cortisone (but without the side effects). It is used as an:
- anti-inflammatory, which means that it is good for aches and pains, including arthritis.
- anti-allergic for the relief of hay fever, allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis and bronchial asthma.
- expectorant for the relief of irritating coughs, asthma and chest infections.
- It has an aspirin like effect in relieving fevers and pains, such as headaches.
- It has the ability to improve resistance to stress. It should be considered during times of both physical and emotional stress and when feeling tired and run down.
Mullein (aerial) Verbascum thapsus.
Mullein is a very useful respiratory system remedy and can be used in most conditions that affect respiration. Mullein:
- is ideal for toning the mucous membranes of the respiratory system, reducing inflammation and thus facilitating expectoration. This is particularly useful in bronchitis where there is a cough associated with soreness. Mullein can be combined with horehound or thyme or both for greater effectiveness. An infusion of oils of mullein can be used as a chest rub for bronchitis. A gargle made from the flowers can be used to ease sore throats.
- as an infusion made from the leaves is weakly sedative and relaxing so is useful as an aid to inducing sleep.
Mustard (seed) Brassica alba and Brassica nigra.
Mustard has a stimulating action on the circulation and respiratory system and can be used for clearing the respiratory passages. Mustard leaves are high in vitamins A, C and E and can be added to salads. Eating fresh mustard leaves will purify and strengthen the blood.
Nettle Leaves (aerial) Urtica dioica.
Nettle leaves are used for the urinary system and it strengthens and supports the whole body. It is very rich in chlorophyll. Nettle leaves:
- have a stimulating effect on the bladder and kidneys and assist in cleansing the body of toxins and wastes and
- clears catarrhal congestion in bronchial tubes
Sage (aerial) Salvia officinalis.
- is highly antiseptic, which makes it an excellent remedy for colds, fever, sore throats and in cases of tonsillitis, bronchitis, catarrh and sinusitis. It should be taken when there are signs of an infection. It also has astringent properties that make it useful for reducing phlegm. The herbal infusion can be used as an inhalation and mouthwash. As a mouthwash it can be used for inflamed and bleeding gums, inflamed tongue and generalized mouth inflammation and ulcers.
- will stimulate the immune system and help to prevent infections and auto-immune problems. It also acts as a tonic to the nervous system and has been used to enhance strength and vitality.
- is a good digestive remedy as the volatile oils have a relaxant effect on the smooth muscles of the intestines and the bitters stimulate the appetite and assist in cleansing the liver. It stimulates the flow of digestive enzymes and bile, settles the stomach, relieves colic, nausea and liver complaints.
- has powerful antioxidant properties, reducing free radical numbers and thus helping to delay the aging process.
Notes on sage
- Do not use sage when pregnant or while breast feeding. Small amounts used in cooking are generally safe.
- Do not take medicinal doses internally if you are an epileptic.
- In therapeutic amounts it can increase the sedative effects of medications.
- Do not take if you are hypoglycemic.
- It is considered safe when it is used as a spice.
Skullcap (aerial) Scutellaria laterifolia.
Skullcap is a powerful immune booster, especially for the upper body. It is used to help speed recovery, relax nervous tension and renew the nervous system. Scutellaria is rich in minerals that are necessary for the nervous system. It is useful for the strengthening and support provided in times of stress and is a remedy for:
- nervous tension,
- exhaustion and
Thyme (aerial) Thymus vulgaris
- is a powerful antiseptic which can be used both internally and externally. It enhances the immune system’s fight against bacterial, viral and fungal infections. It is useful in colds, flu, gastroenteritis, candida, cystitis and salpingitis.
- has a relaxation effect on the bronchial tubes which helps in asthma, bronchitis and whooping cough. Its expectorant action increases the production of fluid mucous and helps shift phlegm.
- acts as a liver cleanser and will help remove toxins from the body.
- may be used as a gargle in laryngitis and tonsillitis, easing sore throats and soothing irritable coughs.
Small amounts used in cooking are generally safe but do not take internally in medicinal doses during pregnancy or if you have liver or kidney disease.
Yarrow (aerial)Achillea millefolium.
Yarrow is a versatile remedy. It contains anti-inflammatory and antiseptic volatile oils, astringent tannins, resins that are also astringent and antiseptic and silica which promotes tissue repair. Because of these properties yarrow:
- can be used to treat infections and inflamed conditions such as gastritis and enteritis. Taken hot it is excellent for throwing off fevers, cold and flu, coughs and sore throats.
- can be used as a tonic for the nervous system.
Notes on yarrow
- Avoid the use of yarrow in pregnancy.
- It can cause a severe hypersensitivity reaction in a small number of people. Be very cautious the first time that you use it and never use it if you are allergic to other plants in the Asteraceae family to which the yarrow belong.
- Do not take internally if you are taking blood thinning drugs.
These herbs will assist in the removal of the toxins that build up in the lungs and the rest of the body when you smoke. They are therefore a valuable aid to your recovery when you quit smoking. You will find these herbs in an easy to use herbal respiratory aid. These herbs have many additional benefits besides the ones mentioned and will be invaluable for reclaiming your health as a non-smoker.
Herbs alone however are not the only support that you need when you are quitting smoking. You need comprehensive support during the process so that you will have a successful, long term quitting outcome. You will find the support and assistance you need to quit smoking at Growerz.com.