The health of our lungs has a direct impact on the health of our body, as every single organ relies upon oxygen for functioning. The lungs play the vital role of moving fresh air into your body while moving waste gases (like carbon dioxide) out of the body.
If our lung health is impaired, the lungs don’t do this important task as efficiently as they should, and as a result, the whole body suffers. This is why it is incredibly important to take care of your lungs so they do their work to help you stay healthy.
One of the major ways to care for your lung health, of course, is to limit your exposure to airborne toxins like cigarette smoke, industrial pollution, mold, poor indoor air quality, etc. You can also take proactive measures to improve your lung health, such as by using herbs that have a natural ability to improve lung health.
Top 5 Herbs for Improving Lung Health
Perhaps one of the most well-known lung supporting herbs, mullein (Verbascum thapsus) is commonly found in many places of the world and prefers natural meadows and forest openings that have dry, sandy soil. Mullein contains various chemical constituents like saponins, iridoid and phenylethanoid glycosides, flavonoids, vitamin C and minerals, all of which work together to improve respiratory health and reduce inflammation in the airways.
Osha (Ligusticum porteri) is a perennial herb found in parts of the Rocky Mountains and northern Mexico, especially in the southwestern United States. The root of this plant has been used medicinally for centuries and has particular benefits on lung health. One of the active compounds in osha root is Z-ligustilide, which research shows may improve circulation to the lungs and aid in lung healing.
Lungwort (Pulmonaria officinalis), as the name implies, is an herb used traditionally as a remedy for the lungs. In the wild, lungwort usually grows in deciduous woodlands. Some species of lungwort are found in moist sites, while other species are found in drier regions. People take lungwort to treat breathing conditions, stomach and intestinal ailments, and kidney and urinary tract problems. Lungwort is often used in cough medicines, and has also been used for colds, flus, pneumonia, and other conditions affecting the lungs.
Plantain (Plantago major) is a common herb native to most of Europe and northern and central Asia, but has widely naturalized elsewhere in the world, including many parts of the United States. Many herbalists are familiar with the use of plantain leaf for first aid in the field, where fresh plantain is chewed and applied directly to the skin to ease stings, bites, and minor burns or cuts. However, a lesser known use of this medicinal herb is for its beneficial effect on the respiratory system. The leaves of plantain are asoothing and healing to the lungs. They ease irritation and dryness in the airways, as well as reducing mucus and congestion, gently moisturizing while also helping to dry, tighten, and tone the mucus lining.
Many people are familiar with peppermint (Mentha x piperita), but not everyone knows just how beneficial this plant is as a medicinal herb. Peppermint is used to improve digestion, reduce bloating, ease stomach discomfort, relieve clogged sinuses, fight bacterial infections, and to reduce inflammation in the body. Peppermint is great for clearing congestion while also soothing, relaxing, and opening the airways to improve breathing.
Improving Lung Health with Herbal Supplements
While these herbs can be taken as powders, capsules, or teas the most effective way to get the benefit of these herbs is through therapeutic herbal extracts. When herbal extracts are made correctly, they are the most bioavailable—meaning they are the easiest for the body to absorb and make use of. Rather than getting an extract for each one of these herbs, try to find an extract formula that offers multiple of them. Be sure that the herbs are also high quality and not grown with any pesticides or mixed with any harmful chemicals.
The brand Zuma Nutrition has a custom line of Lung Detox Supplements that are great formulas for the lungs that actually combine all 5 of the herbs mentioned above in therapeutic dosages. They also use only wildcrafted, organic and biodynamic ingredients, and never put any fillers, chemicals, or other toxic substances in their formulas. Their formula is really an impressive herbal tonic for improving respiratory health, and the benefits are noticed almost immediately after taking it.
The lungs are important to our overall health—without them, we could not live, and when they are in poor health the rest of our body suffers. To take care of your lung health, avoid breathing in toxins from the environment the best you can, and take proactive measures to improve lung health such as taking lung-supporting herbs or consuming a lung support herbal formula. Taking care of your lungs and making proactive decisions to improve your lung health is one of the greatest things you can do for your body.