Asthma is a chronic disorder that affects the lining of your airways, which become inflamed and narrow, resulting in symptoms like shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, and chest tightness (1Trusted Source).
Although there are many conventional treatments for asthma, some herbal teas may relieve symptoms.
Here are 7 teas that may provide asthma relief.
Ginger tea is made by boiling the roots of the ginger plant (Zingiber officinale).
This powerful spice is loaded with nutrients and bioactive compounds. It’s associated with benefits like reduced inflammation, nausea relief, and lower blood sugar levels (2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source).
Plus, research suggests that ginger may help relieve asthma symptoms.
Test-tube studies using human cells indicate that ginger compounds, such as gingerols and shogaols, may alleviate asthma symptoms by reducing airway inflammation (5Trusted Source, 6Trusted Source, 7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).
In a 2-month study, 92 people with asthma took either 450 mg of ginger extract or a placebo daily. Notably, 20% of those in the ginger group experienced wheezing relief, and 52% experienced chest tightness relief (9).
Alternatively, you can make ginger tea at home. Simply grate a small knob of peeled ginger, steep it in 1 cup (240 mL) of boiling water for 10–20 minutes depending on your desired strength, then strain out the ginger.
You can enjoy ginger tea as is or with a dash of lemon, honey, or cinnamon.
Green tea is a popular beverage derived from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant.
It’s packed with nutrients, plant compounds, and antioxidants, which are tied to weight loss, as well as a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers (10Trusted Source, 11Trusted Source, 12Trusted Source, 13Trusted Source).
In addition, research suggests that green tea may relieve asthma symptoms.
In addition, a study in over 1,000 people found that those who drank at least two 8-ounce (240-mL) cups of green tea had significantly better lung function than those who drank none (16Trusted Source).
You can purchase green tea loose leaf or in tea bags.
Like green tea, black tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant. However, it’s exposed to air for oxidation, which causes the leaves to turn dark brown, intensifying the flavor. It’s often blended with other ingredients to make teas like English breakfast or Earl Grey.
Similarly to green tea, black tea contains caffeine, which may help relax your airways and modestly improve lung function. This may provide temporary relief from asthma symptoms (17Trusted Source).
You can purchase black tea loose leaf or in tea bags.
Eucalyptus tea is made from the leaves of the eucalyptus tree, which is packed with powerful antioxidants and plant compounds like eucalyptol.
Notably, eucalyptol may help treat asthma symptoms.
In a 12-week study, 32 people with bronchial asthma were given either 600 mg of eucalyptol or a placebo daily. Those who received eucalyptol required 36% less medication to manage asthma symptoms, compared with those in the control group, who needed 7% less (22Trusted Source).
Alternatively, you can make your own at home using dried eucalyptus leaves. Simply steep the dried leaves in 1 cup (240 mL) of boiling water for up to 10 minutes and use a strainer or cheesecloth to remove the leaves before drinking.
Licorice tea is made from the root of the licorice plant (Glycyrrhiza glabra) and has a distinctly sweet but slightly bitter flavor.
In traditional medicine, licorice root has long been used to treat various conditions, including asthma.
Animal studies note that extract of the licorice compound glycyrrhizin relieves symptoms of asthma, especially when combined with conventional asthma treatments like salbutamol (albuterol) (23Trusted Source, 24Trusted Source, 25Trusted Source).
Although human research has shown similar results, more long-term research is needed (26Trusted Source).
Keep in mind that large amounts of licorice root may lead to dangerous side effects. It’s best to limit your tea intake to 1 cup (240 mL) per day and speak to your healthcare provider if you have any medical conditions.
Mullein tea is a rich and aromatic infusion made from the leaves of the common mullein (Verbasscum thapus), which is native to Europe, Asia, and Africa.
It has been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years as a remedy for respiratory conditions, such as bronchitis, mucus buildup (catarrh), and asthma.
Animal and human studies suggest that mullein may help treat asthma symptoms like coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath by reducing inflammation, which helps relax the muscles in your respiratory tract. Still, more research is needed (27Trusted Source).
Mullein tea is available in prepackaged tea bags and or dried leaf form.
If you’d like to make mullein tea with dried leaves, simply add a small amount to 1 cup (240 mL) of boiling water and steep for 15–30 minutes. Use a strainer or cheesecloth to remove the leaves to avoid throat irritation.
Breathe Easy tea is a specific herbal formulation meant to improve respiratory health. It’s manufactured by the company Traditional Medicinals.
It contains various Western and traditional Chinese herbs, including:
- fennel fruit
- licorice root
- eucalyptus leaves
- Bi Yan Pian (a blend of 11 Chinese herbs)
- a proprietary blend of peppermint leaf and ginger rhizome
Certain herbal teas may help relieve asthma symptoms.
Research suggests that ginger tea, green tea, black tea, eucalyptus tea, fennel tea, and licorice tea may reduce inflammation, relax your respiratory muscles, and boost your breathing, among other benefits.
Keep in mind that these teas should be used in tandem with your current asthma medications and shouldn’t be seen as a replacement.