12 Useful Home Remedies for Asthma Wheezing

Wheezing refers to the noisy whistling sound that you hear when you inhale or exhale [1].

It is one of the most common symptoms of asthma, a condition characterized by obstruction in the airways and difficulty in breathing [1, 2].

Other symptoms of asthma include coughing particularly at night, chest tightness, and shortness of breath [3].

Since asthma is a serious condition that requires immediate attention, you should take care of this issue right away.

Consult the doctor for an appropriate medical treatment.

While waiting for results, get temporary relief using these natural and tried-and-tested natural remedies for asthma wheezing.

1. St. John’s Wort

Scientific findings validate St. John’s wort pharmacological properties, including its antibacterial and antiviral activities [4].

Most of its benefits for the health can be attributed to a compound called hypericin, along with some flavonoids [4].

St. John’s wort has also been found to be a reliable solution for asthma wheezing.

This herb works as a bronchodilator, relaxing the lung muscles and widening the bronchial tubes to make it easier for a person suffering from asthma to breathe [5, 6].

These mechanisms make this herb a viable treatment not only for respiratory ailments such as bronchitis and asthma but also for conditions characterized by an overactive gut [6].

It also helps that St. John’s wort has anxiolytic effects, as these can come in handy when you’re finding it hard to breathe.

As you know, difficulty in breathing can shoot up stress levels, and high stress can make it even more difficult for you to breathe.

This herb can be used to break this vicious cycle, and induce relaxation you need to feel better.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of dried St. John’s wort
  • 1 cup of hot water

Recommended Directions:

  • Steep St. John’s wort in hot water for 10 minutes.
  • Drink this tea twice a day for one to two weeks.

2. Honey

Historical records show that honey has long been used for its therapeutic purposes since the ancient times in Rome and Greece [7].

One of its many health benefits is as a remedy for wheezing caused by asthma.

A study that was conducted in the National Ribat University in Sudan reports that out of 30 asthmatic patients who participated, those who received honey and black seed for three months had a significant reduction in asthmatic wheezing [8].

The use of these natural remedies also reduced other unpleasant symptoms that are common in asthmatic patients [8].

With its anti-allergy and anti-inflammatory properties, honey is considered a “cheap and safe” natural approach for treating respiratory problems including asthma [8].

It works not only on mild to moderate cases but also for severe and persistent condition [8].

Honey also works effectively when combined with coffee, according to a 2013 study [9].

This study, which was conducted for four years, assessed the efficacy of three treatment methods designed to alleviate upper respiratory infections [9].

Out of the 97 adults with infectious cough, those who were given a combination of honey and coffee recovered more quickly than the other groups [9].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 glass of hot water

Recommended Directions:

  • Stir in honey into hot water.
  • Drink slowly.
  • Repeat three times a day until symptoms improve.

3. Garlic

The chemical composition of garlic has been the subject of numerous scientific explorations, as researchers are keen to discover what makes up this herb that’s been used for years as a potent remedy.

It’s interesting to know that garlic has been used since the ancient times in Egypt to boost the health and stamina of the working class carrying out heavy labor [10].

Today, it remains widely used for treating a wide range of ailments, including asthma.

Garlic has been proven to be an effective decongestant and expectorant, relieving wheezing and other symptoms in asthmatic patients [11].

Other respiratory conditions that it can alleviate are sinusitis, rhinitis, pharyngitis, cough, chest infections, tuberculosis, and chest congestion [11].

Whatever respiratory problem is bothering you, making use of garlic can provide temporary yet significant relief from distressing symptoms.

Because this herb is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants, it does not only relieve your condition but also strengthens your immune defense against other diseases.

What You’ll Need:

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  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Crush garlic cloves, and boil in water.
  • Drink concoction twice a day for three to four days.

4. Ginger

For centuries, ginger has been a popular natural treatment for various respiratory ailments [12].

In Iran, a team of scientists probed the effects of ginger on asthmatic patients [13].

For two months, half of the 92 patients were given 150 mg ginger every eight hours while the other half received a placebo [13].

It was found that this herbal remedy worked in reducing asthma symptoms including wheezing, chest tightness and coughing [13].

In fact, ginger relieved wheezing in almost 20 percent of the patients, and reduced chest tightness in more than half of the participants [13].

With their conditions significantly improved, patients not only felt better but also were able to get a better quality sleep at night [13].

Its efficacy as an anti-asthma is attributable to its ability to relax the muscles in the airways, reduce airway contractions, and clear it from obstruction [14, 15, 16].

These actions may be due to the presence of gingerol and other chemical constituents in ginger [17].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of grated ginger
  • 1 1/2 cups of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Add ginger.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Strain the mixture.
  • Drink the tea every night before sleeping.

5. Turmeric

Turmeric is a widely used spice in Indonesia, India and other countries in Southeast Asia [18].

Its fame is not only due to its strong flavor and aroma, but also to its various purposes as a traditional medicine [18].

It has long been used to treat different types of respiratory ailments, including asthma [19].

In a clinical trial performed by Indian researchers in 2014, 77 patients were given either 500 mg curcumin daily or a placebo [20].

Patients were assessed for symptoms including chest congestion, difficulty in breathing, coughing, and wheezing [20].

Results show that curcumin in turmeric alleviated these symptoms in mild to moderate asthma cases [20].

The 30-day treatment led to the improvement of the airway obstruction [20].

Researchers also noted the absence of any adverse effects after the use of this herbal remedy, which indicates that it’s also safe [20].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 glass of water

Recommended Directions:

  • In a pot, boil water.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Stir in turmeric powder until it dissolves.
  • Drink the concoction once a day for three to four days.

6. Gingko Biloba

Empirical studies serve as evidence to gingko biloba’s various pharmacological effects [21].

It has played an important role in treating dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, preventing stroke, slowing down aging, and neutralizing free radical damage in the body [21].

This herbal remedy which is one of the most frequently used in Europe, also reduces inflammation in the airways with its chemical compound ginkgolide [22].

A study has also found it to have protective effects against bronchospasm caused by strenuous physical activity, and allergic reactions to dust mites, both of which could lead to asthma and wheezing [22].

This means that you can use gingko biloba as either preventive measure or treatment for exercise-induced asthma, and also for asthma caused by dust mites [22].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of dried gingko biloba leaves
  • 1 cup of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Add gingko biloba leaves.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Let it steep for 10 minutes.
  • Strain the leaves.
  • Drink the tea once a day for up to one week.

7. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil has many properties that can help in curbing asthma.

It reduces inflammation in the airways, smoothens the bronchial muscles, and boosts the immune system [23].

Moreover, it’s a powerful antimicrobial that fights Staphylococcus aureus along with other viruses and fungi that can cause allergic reactions and asthma [23].

Eucalyptol, the main active compound in eucalyptus, has been found effective as a mucolytic for asthma and other lower respiratory diseases [24].

As a mucolytic, eucalyptol works by thinning and expelling the mucus, which clogs the airways and makes it difficult to breathe [24].

The cooling and soothing effects of this oil can also help you relax and make you less worried about your condition.

This is important, as stress only aggravates asthmatic condition.

What You’ll Need:

  • A bowl of hot water
  • 5 drops of eucalyptus oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Pour oil into water.
  • Inhale the steam.
  • Repeat as needed for three to four days.

8. Coffee

It’s easy to associate coffee with energy boost because that’s what most people know about this beverage.

Did you know that a cup of coffee can also be a boon for those suffering from asthmatic wheezing?

Many studies confirm that caffeine in coffee has bronchodilator effects [25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30].

A survey involving more than 70,000 asthmatic patients shows that long-term consumption of coffee not only reduces asthma symptoms, but also prevents the “clinical manifestation of bronchial asthma” [25].

In another study, 23 asthmatic patients ages 8 to 18 years were given either caffeine or theophylline [26].

Theophylline is a bronchodilator drug used to treat wheezing, breathlessness and coughing in asthmatic patients [26].

After six hours, it was observed that caffeine worked just as effectively as the medication in reducing airway obstruction and clearing congestion [26].

Scientists conclude that caffeine’s anti-asthma effects are similar to theophylline [27].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 to 2 cups of coffee

Recommended Directions:

  • Drink coffee everyday until you get relief from wheezing.
  • Do not drink more than three cups a day.

9. Licorice Root

Licorice root is commonly used for treating allergic diseases and inflammatory disorders [28].

It’s one of the complementary remedies for asthma that were tested in a study published in the Clinical Biochemistry Journal [29].

A total of 63 patients diagnosed with bronchial asthma were given either licorice in the form of an oral capsule or a placebo [29].

These patients received treatment three times a day for four weeks [29].

Researchers found that it is a natural inhibitor for leukotriene and nitric oxide [29].

These mechanisms along with its anti-inflammatory actions make it a suitable treatment for asthma and its symptoms [29].

And not only does licorice root minimize the symptoms, it also improved pulmonary function [29].

A 2006 study demonstrates that its glycyrrhizin reduces the severity of asthmatic features [30].

It worked by reducing constriction, hyperreactivity and inflammation of the airways [30].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of dried licorice root
  • 1 cup of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Add dried licorice root.
  • Steep for 20 minutes.
  • Strain the mixture.
  • Drink the tea several times a day for one to two weeks.

10. Onion

Onion belongs to the same family as garlic, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that the two have similar medicinal value.

In Ayurvedic medicine, onion is used for reducing inflammation and alleviating allergies just like garlic [31].

Its potential as an anti-inflammatory and antihistaminic agent makes it a practical remedy for asthma and wheezing [31].

Research has proved that onion is a useful and safe natural treatment for this bronchial problem [32].

In a study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology, it was shown oral intake and inhalation of onion extract improved conditions of guinea pigs induced with allergens [32].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon onions, chopped

Recommended Directions:

  • Put ingredients in a glass jar.
  • Chill in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
  • The next day, strain the onions.
  • Take one teaspoon of the solution.
  • Do this everyday until asthma subsides.

11. Mustard Oil

When you’re having an asthma attack, you can turn to mustard oil for relief.

Massaging your chest with mustard oil is believed to be helpful in alleviating chest congestion, clearing the airways, and restoring comfortable breathing.

Its safety and efficacy as treatment for asthma and other respiratory ailments should further be investigated.

However, there’s one study that points out that mustard oil has strong anti-inflammatory effects that can help in situations when a patient suffers from asthmatic wheezing and shortness of breath [33].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of mustard oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon of camphor

Recommended Directions:

  • Combine these ingredients in a pan.
  • Warm the mixture for a few seconds.
  • When the temperature is just right for topical application, apply a thin layer on chest and upper back.
  • Massage gently for a few minutes.
  • Repeat this remedy two to three times a day until you feel better.

12. Ginseng

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a serious respiratory problem that can also cause wheezing.

And one of the more efficient ways to relieve this condition is with the use of ginseng.

In 2014, a group of scientists from Australia analyzed its effects on patients with COPD [34].

It was uncovered that the ginsenosides in ginseng have anti-inflammatory effects as well as inhibitory effects on oxidative stress [34].

Ginseng has been found to inhibit processes in the respiratory tract that are related to the development and progress of COPD [34].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of ginseng extract
  • 2 cups of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Put water in a pot and bring to a boil.
  • Add ginseng extract.
  • Remove from the stove.
  • Transfer mixture to a cup.
  • Consume mixture once a day for one week.

Don’t ignore symptoms of asthma.

Apart from using these remedies, be sure to consult a professional healthcare provider right away.