As per WHO estimates, 235 million people suffer from asthma globally and the number is increasing every day. People suffering asthma have swollen and sensitive airways. When certain allergic substances are inhaled, the airways get constricted which makes it difficult for air to flow into lungs. This triggers coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.
There is no complete cure for asthma but the symptoms can be controlled to a maximum extent. Garlic is a potent alternative remedy that has been used for centuries as a treatment for breathing problems and respiratory ailments. So, let’s take a look at how garlic helps in treating asthma.
Is Garlic Effective for Treating Asthma?
- Garlic contains natural compounds such as vitamin C and allicin that neutralize free radicals – the unstable molecules that promote contraction of the airway muscles in asthma sufferers.
- Vitamin C in garlic also promotes histamine breakdown and reduce the release of histamine in the body. Histamine is a chemical release by the body that is involved in a number of allergic reactions and is known to cause inflammation in asthma patients.
- Garlic also boosts the ability of the body to produce prostacyclins. These are lipid molecules that help to keep the air passages open and promote easy breathing in asthma patients.
How to Use Garlic for Asthma Treatment?
There are many ways of using garlic in either raw, oil or in capsule form. We have mentioned various methods with a detailed description.
Garlic contains a number of compounds that provide relief from the asthma symptoms. Here are a few ways to use garlic on its own.
Process 1: Garlic Juice
- Crush 5 to 6 garlic cloves with some water to form a smooth paste.
- Extract the juice from this paste and take it 3 times a day.
- Repeat it every day.
Note: Those who cannot stand the strong taste and flavor of garlic juice and can mix it with pomegranate juice.
Process 2: Garlic Tea
- Crush 3 to 4 cloves of garlic and add it to 2 cups of water.
- Heat the water in a sauce pan and turn it off when the water reduces to 1 cup.
- Pour the tea into a cup and sip it warm, 3 times in a day.
Note: You can also add 1/2 teaspoon each of honey and lemon juice to enhance the taste.
2. Garlic Milk
Warm and soothing garlic milk is an age-old natural remedy for asthma. Warm milk soothes the respiratory tract and reduces inflammation.
- Peel and crush the 8 cloves of garlic.
- Add the crushed garlic to 1/4 cup of milk and bring the mixture to a boil. Make sure to stir constantly with a spatula.
- Strain the garlic from the hot milk and let the milk cool down a bit.
- Drink the garlic milk while it is still warm.
- Repeat this remedy 1 to 2 times a day.
3. Garlic and Ginger Paste
Ginger also helps to decrease inflammation of the respiratory tract and inhibit contraction of the airways which helps to relieve the symptoms of asthma. It has certain compounds that increase the muscle relaxant effects of certain asthma drugs.
- Peel and crush 1 inch of ginger and 3 to 4 cloves of garlic together to form a paste.
- Add 1 teaspoon of honey to it and mix well.
- Consume 1 tablespoon of this mixture 2 to 3 times a day.
4. Garlic and Onion Mix
Onions contain a variety of anti-inflammatory compounds such as antioxidant flavonoid quercetin that causes significant dilation of the bronchi.
- Peel a small onion and grate it to form a smooth pulp.
- Crush 4 garlic cloves and mix it with the onion pulp.
- Consume 1 tablespoon of this mixture 1 to 2 times a day.
5. Garlic and Honey Drink
The natural alcohol and oils in honey help to reduce the symptoms of asthma. Just the smell of honey is effective enough to produce positive results in some people suffering from an asthma attack.
- Crush 4 garlic cloves thoroughly.
- Add the garlic paste and 1 tablespoon of honey to 1 glass of warm water and mix well.
- Drink this mixture 3 times a day.
6. Garlic and Mustard Oil Rub
The aroma of pure mustard oil increases airflow to the lungs during asthma attack and make it easier to cope up with the symptoms.
- Crush 3 to 4 garlic cloves and add it to 2 tablespoons of mustard oil.
- Heat the mustard oil for 5 minutes and then let it cool down a bit.
- Massage your chest with this slightly warm garlic mustard oil for few minutes.
- Repeat the process 1 to 2 times a day.
7. Garlic and Turmeric
The anti-allergy properties of turmeric prevent asthma triggers caused by allergies. It may also have some effect on the histamines that cause inflammation of the airways.
- Peel one inch of turmeric root and crush it with some water to form a paste.
- Crush 4 to 5 garlic cloves and add it to the turmeric paste and mix well.
- Consume 1 tablespoon of this mixture.
- Repeat the process 1 – 2 times a day for few days.
8. Garlic and Carom Seeds
Carom seeds, also known as Ajwain works as a natural bronchodilator that dilates the bronchial tubes in the lungs and helps to treat mild asthma.
- Crush 4 to 5 garlic cloves.
- Add the crushed garlic and 1 teaspoon of carom seeds in 1 glass of water.
- Bring the mixture to boil.
- Drink this concoction or inhale its steam.
- Repeat the process regularly.
9. Garlic and Horseradish
The potent ethers in horseradish help to treat asthma by eliminating mucus from the bronchial tubes and sinuses. It also helps to treat asthma triggered by allergies.
- Grate half a horseradish and add 4 cloves of crushed garlic to it.
- Add 1/2 cup of water to this mixture and heat for some time.
- Remove from heat, let it cool down a bit and consume a spoonful every night.
- You can also add 1/2 teaspoon of honey to it to enhance its taste.
10. Garlic Oil
- Sprinkle a few drops of garlic oil on a tissue or paper towel.
- Breathe in the vapors of the garlic oil before going to bed.
- You can also add a few drops of garlic oil in a pot of boiling water and inhale the steam.
11. Garlic Oil and Eucalyptus Oil Steam
The strong scent of eucalyptus oil opens up the blocked airways. Compound eucalyptol present in eucalyptus oil breaks down phlegm and mucous in the system and allows you to breathe smoothly.
- Heat a pot of water.
- Add few drops of eucalyptus oil and garlic oil to it.
- Inhale the vapors coming from the pot for few minutes.
- Repeat regularly.
Tips and Precautions:
- Garlic becomes most effective when it is crushed and left in the open for 5 to 10 minutes before consuming it. It helps to release the active components of the garlic. So, after you crush the garlic cloves, leave them for 5 minutes before consuming them or mixing them with some other ingredients.
- Some people might experience side effects such as heartburn, diarrhea and light-headedness when they start consuming garlic for the first time.
- Continued consumption of garlic increases perspiration and body odor, so one may have to increase the use of deodorants and antiperspirants.
- The highly pungent taste of raw garlic cloves can cause an unpleasant burning sensation in the mouth or stomach.
- Garlic can interact with certain medications such as anticoagulant, antiplatelet, and anti-viral drugs, so one must consult a doctor before using garlic for treating asthma.
- When consumed in large quantities, garlic can interact with some contraceptive drugs and reduce their effectiveness.
- Pregnant and breast-feeding women should not use garlic or garlic supplements.
- Try to identify your triggers and avoid them at all cost.
- If you are a smoker then take the effort to quit smoking and avoid even second-hand smoke.
- Don’t allow pets into your bedroom or on furniture.
- Pay attention to the air quality in your home. Avoid extremely humid or extremely cold weather.
Garlic is one of the best natural remedies for asthma that works as effectively as prescription drugs without causing any side-effects. Use these garlic remedies to treat the symptoms of asthma naturally and don’t forget to share your tips and experiences with us in the comments section.