According to a study published by the medical journal Jama, one in seven people smoke daily. According to WHO, nearly 6 million people die each year from smoking. Unfortunately, smoking is addictive and it is difficult to get rid of this bad habit.
Nevertheless, there are natural solutions to help you stop smoking. First, avoid using patches or gums as a substitute. Although they contain a quantity of nicotine that helps relieve the symptoms of physical deprivation, scientists have not yet precisely studied their potential adverse effects.
In addition, some drugs consumed during smoking cessation can be a serious health hazard. Champix, for example, contains a molecule called varenicline that mimics the effects of nicotine and causes smokers to feel the pleasure of smelling a cigarette. This drug was responsible for about 80 deaths between 2006 and 2011. The side effects of this molecule are nausea, cravings for vomiting and sleep disorders.
Here are 13 herbs that will allow you to stop smoking and clean your lungs in a natural and safe way:
- The lobelia
The swollen lobelia, also called ‘Indian tobacco’, is a herbaceous plant native to North America sometimes used as a substitute for tobacco. American Indians used to smoke lobelia to treat respiratory disorders.
Indeed, lobelia is a plant that has antispasmodic properties because it has the ability to relax the muscles of the bronchi and promote the expulsion of mucus. This plant contains a chemical called lobeline that has the same effects as nicotine without causing any dependence for the smoker. Infuse ¼ to ½ tablespoon lobelia dried in 250 ml boiling water for 30 to 40 minutes. This will relax you, make the taste of the cigarette unpleasant and clean your lungs.
However, people with heart disease or high blood pressure should not consume this herb, just like pregnant women and children.
- St. John’s wort
St. John’s wort is a plant with many virtues. It is a natural antidepressant used to treat moderate depression because it contains active ingredients that stimulate the production of norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin; hormones that regulate mood, envy and motivation. St. John’s wort is also beneficial for the digestive tract and the respiratory system. There are St. John’s wort capsules that you can take more than once a day. Nevertheless, it is advisable to seek the advice of a specialist before starting to consume.
- Red ginseng
Korean red ginseng is effective in controlling the effects of smoking cessation. When the person quits smoking, she becomes more irritable and can easily get upset or stress. Red Ginseng helps to overcome the lack of nicotine, relax and energize the body. You can chew a small amount of dried red ginseng and swallow the juice. However, it is advisable to see a specialist before consuming this plant.
Peppermint is an antiseptic that treats headaches, migraines, intellectual or nervous fatigue, lung infections, fight against bad breath and promotes digestion. Pour two to three drops of essential oil in a spoonful of honey or diluted in ½ glass of warm water. However, if you are taking medication, it is advisable to see a specialist.
Verbena is a plant that reacts very effectively in situations of stress or anxiety. It has active ingredients that have the property of acting directly on the nervous system to give a feeling of relaxation. It is an antispasmodic that acts on the muscles of the lungs and relieves nervous coughs. It is advisable to drink it as an infusion in the evening before sleeping.
- The hyssop
Hyssop is an expectorant and tonic plant that can treat the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract. It also has antispasmodic properties that help improve digestion and relax the muscles of the body. Some scientists have claimed that hyssop has the ability to clean the body of certain toxins such as nicotine and tar.
- Black cohosh
Black cohosh, combined with St. John’s wort, is effective in controlling mood disorders, depression, anxiety or sleep disorders. It is also beneficial for the digestive tract and the respiratory system.
In addition, a study published by an American research institute showed that black cohosh would have the ability to regulate the nervousness caused by the weaning state. However, it is advisable to see a specialist before consuming this kind of plant.
- The motherwort
The motherwort is a very effective plant that acts in a beneficial way against heart problems of nervous origin. Indeed, this plant is a tonic that helps regulate the heart rate and reduce palpitations. It is also a very effective antispasmodic that relaxes the heart muscles and can act against nervous disorders caused by smoking cessation. However, if you take medication, you must first seek the advice of a specialist.
The catnip is an aromatic plant known for its antispasmodic and anti-hysterical properties. The catnip helps fight against anxiety, headaches, insomnia and stomach upset. It is therefore beneficial against the symptoms of smoking cessation. Put a few drops on the back of your tongue, but without exaggeration, because the catnip can cause vomiting or nausea. It is also advisable to see a doctor before starting consumption.
- Oat straw or oatmeal
Oats is a plant mainly grown as a cereal. It is rich in nutrients such as iron, zinc and calcium, antioxidants such as flavonoids and alkaloids. The latter have calming and sedative properties that can treat nervous disorders and insomnia. Alkaloids also reduce the desire to smoke. Do not hesitate to make herbal tea with oat straw or to add oatmeal to your dishes.
The skullcap is known for its sedative and antispasmodic properties. As a rule, it is used to fight against anxiety, mood swings and menopausal symptoms.
Recent studies have shown that skullcap contains active ingredients that can stimulate endorphin production to create a sense of well-being. It is therefore a very effective plant to fight against the symptoms associated with smoking cessation. However, if you follow any treatment, it is advisable to see a specialist.
- The slippery elm
The slippery elm is very famous for its effectiveness in fighting coughs. This plant stimulates the immune system, protects and softens certain membranes of the body. Elm is also rich in antioxidants and helps eliminate toxins accumulated during the day. However, it is advisable to see a doctor before eating.
Valerian is a floral plant that has the ability to act on the nervous balance. It serves as a sedative and anti-anxiety remedy, and is considered effective in helping to stop smoking. Valerian helps with the symptoms of withdrawal such as irritability, depression, nervousness and anxiety.
This plant is widely recommended to insomniacs. According to the American Society Against Cancer, it helps to find a more restful sleep. In addition, valerian gives a bad taste to the cigarette and helps to reduce the consumption of tobacco.
This herb is available as capsules or powder, you must use it following the instructions of a doctor.