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10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs

With the way things are in the world today, it’s no wonder we’re all looking for ways to stay healthy. Keeping your immune system in great shape is always good, but it’s a good idea to know what to do if you are sick already. Fortunately, there are plenty of natural ways to keep viruses at bay and to ensure your lungs stay clear, even if you do get sick.

Something to note about these treatments is that they do well in concentrated form. That means you’ll probably want to try more than just a cup of tea if you feel something icky coming on. Essential oils, extracts, or concentrated tinctures are all excellent choices when you are being threatened by a virus.

1. Oregano

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - OreganoThis potent herb has many great benefits, but it’s best known for being very useful in killing viruses and bacteria. It has been proven to drastically reduce viral activity in just 15 minutes and is considered useful against herpes simplex type 1, rotavirus, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

How to use it: To use it against a virus, you can drink the tea daily, add chopped oregano to your food, or take it dried and in capsules. To clean surfaces, mix a few drops of essential oil with water and shake thoroughly before spraying the surface and wiping it down.

Viruses aren’t the only reason to take oregano though. It also contains natural decongestants and antihistamines. When you take it daily, it can actually boost lung function, whether or not you’re sick.

2. Peppermint

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - PeppermintYou probably already know that peppermint is excellent for opening up your lungs and nasal passages. It contains menthol, which reduces swelling in the nose and other membranes to ease breathing, but it also loosens up any mucus forming in the lungs.

How to use it: A hot cup of peppermint tea is a great way to remedy a nasty cold that has settled in your lungs.

Peppermint leaf extract is also quite potent when used against viruses and will greatly reduce the influence of the virus. Not only does it attack the virus, peppermint also reducing inflammatory compounds found in the body, so you’ll feel better, too. It treats the symptoms while preventing the virus from wreaking havoc in your body.

3. Lemon Balm

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - Lemon BalmCommonly used as a fragrant addition to food, lemon balm has proven useful against bird flu, herpes, HIV-1, and enterovirus 71. It works to prevent replication of the virus, which is where the trouble starts, and can keep it from spreading in your body.

How to use it: The essential oil is best if you want to really keep it potent, but for everyday use, try making a tea.
This herb is actually useful for aromatherapy and is absorbed easily through the lungs. It contains triterpenes that will help calm your body and ease respiratory issues somewhat. To use the power of aromatherapy, crush the fresh leaves, cup in your hands, and inhale deeply several times.

4. Eucalyptus

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - EucalyptusThis powerful medicinal plant is often found in over-the-counter cold remedies for the very fact that it is useful in opening up your lungs. It does this by stimulating the cilia in your lungs (the tiny little hair-like protuberances) to clear out mucus and other gunk that may be caught up in your lungs. In addition, it boosts your circulation, making it easier for the body to flush the virus out.

How to use it: you can take it orally in a tea or syrup, or you can apply it to the skin (dilute first). Rubbing eucalyptus oil on the soles of your feet may help your body recover from a virus faster than usual.

Since eucalyptus kills off bacteria, fungi, and viruses, it can frequently be found in nasal rinses, which allow you to flush out mucus, plus kill off the virus. It fights against diseases and can be helpful to keep in your natural first aid kit.

5. Osha Root

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - OshaWhile osha root tends to be studied more for its possibilities in cancer treatment, it has also been examined as a potential antiviral. It reduces inflammation and helps prevent oxidative stress, at least in the trial run. There still isn’t enough evidence to make big claims, but many people use the root to treat HIV and AIDS.
When it comes to congested lungs, powdered osha root is considered to be very useful in easing congestion. It helps you take deeper breaths by improving circulation and helping the body clear the lungs.

How to use it: You can take osha root in powder form or as a herbal extract or tincture. Start small, as there’s no regulated dosage amount as of yet. Take with caution, as the effects have not been fully studied.

6. Ginger

0 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - GingerMost people enjoy ginger in their food, or in a nice cup of hot ginger lemon tea. However, if you feel like you’re coming down with something, you’ll want to take a little more than you would just for flavor. Ginger can break up the mucus in your lungs and boosts circulation, to ease breathing when you are sick.

Gingerols and zingerone, found in this zingy herb, have been shown to stop viruses from replicating. They can also stop the viruses from spreading throughout your body by blocking the virus from the cells that they attempt to take over.

7. Rosemary

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - RosemaryIf you have an herb garden, you likely already have rosemary in it. Most people use it for their cooking regularly, but you can also pop it into your medicinal herb cupboard. Rosemary naturally attacks viruses and fights off everything from hepatitis to influenza, thanks to its oleanolic acid.

How to use it: Rosemary tea is greatly beneficial if you’re starting to get a cold or dealing with another virus. It is also ideal for clearing out your lungs if you live in an area that is highly polluted. Take a cup of tea daily to ease mucus build-up and to protect your lungs.

8. Dandelion

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - DandelionAs a natural anti-inflammatory, dandelion can be helpful in treating lung disease. This common flower is often considered a weed, but it has so much more potential.

How to use it: If your lungs are inflamed due to a disease, then dandelion tea made from dried roots or tincture taken regularly can be helpful.

You’ll also find that dandelions have been studied for their antiviral properties, particularly in regards to dengue fever, HIV, and hepatitis B. For a so-called weed, this little flower is rather useful.

9. Licorice

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - LicoriceDid you know that licorice root is a natural expectorant? It helps loosen the mucus in your body and flush it out by making you cough. It’s best to get that mucus out of your lungs, after all. The root also helps with sore throats and reduces inflammation throughout the entire system.
The Chinese have used licorice for many years to treat an assortment of different diseases. However, this root contains substances like liquiritigen, glabridin, and glycyrrhizin, all of which work to prevent viruses from getting a hold in your body.

How to use it: Licorice root can be made into a tea or a syrup that you can take regularly when you feel a cold coming on.

10. Elderberry

10 Herbs That Kill Viruses and Clear Lungs - ElderberryYou’re likely familiar with elderberries as a way to treat illness in general and as an immunity booster. However, this tiny fruit, commonly made into syrup, is helpful in treating viruses and keeping the lungs clear. In fact, studies have shown that elderberries prevent viruses from getting into cells, reducing the contagion of the virus, and helping shut it all down.

How to use it: If you have an upper respiratory infection, elderberry syrup is a good treatment for this. It can reduce the amount of time that you’re sick and also helps reduce the severity of the symptoms.
There are plenty of herbs for any type of issue you’re facing, but these 10 are particularly good for both lungs and preventing viruses. Many have other benefits, as well.

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27 Comments

  • Susan K Sasek Posted May 25, 2021 3:34 pm

    Love this but please note that raw elderberry is highly toxic. It must be cooked!

    • Paula Posted May 25, 2021 4:08 pm

      Thank you note that eucalyptus,peppermint, mints tea tree, neutralize homeopathic remedies, they need to be used separately and not while while using homeopathic remedies.

      • Martha Posted May 27, 2021 6:10 am

        This includes toothpaste!!

    • Leslie Posted May 25, 2021 4:52 pm

      Thanks, I didn’t know that!

    • Shirley Malone Posted May 30, 2021 6:36 pm

      Is elderberry the same as Polk salad

      • Karen Zimmerman Posted June 3, 2021 8:04 pm

        No, totally different plant

    • Tom+Cool Posted June 2, 2021 3:21 pm

      I’m not sure if the berries are poison. I have eaten many without ill effect. Most kids who pick elderberries have eaten some. I have heard that the stalks are poisonous. When kids make flutes put of their hollow stalks, they may feel some sickness from putting it in their mouth.

  • Pat Caren Posted May 25, 2021 3:41 pm

    Pine is full of anti-viral compounds. In 1918, during the pandemic, Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest were treating scurvy with pine needles. The people who ingested pine did not get the flu. I have been drinking a cup of pine tea every day and haven’t been sick with any viral illness all winter.

    • Dorota Posted May 25, 2021 4:10 pm

      Awesome, thank you for sharing.

    • Dianne Dunning Posted May 25, 2021 4:23 pm

      Good information! Thank you.

    • Eileen Posted May 25, 2021 5:48 pm

      Do you make this yourself or buy it from somewhere? Have a recipe to post if you make this yourself?

    • Leanne Miller Posted May 25, 2021 6:44 pm

      Can it be from any pine tree? Or is it a certain type.

    • Barbara Posted May 27, 2021 2:42 pm

      I have made pine tea, but when washing it a just ran it under warm/hot water. Can you tell me how to clean it properly?

  • Geri Posted May 25, 2021 4:04 pm

    I’d like to add some: Horny Goat Weed (strong antiviral with an interesting mechanism of cellular antiviral state, see https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25609307/) and He Sho Wu or Fo Ti, containg Resveratrol which inhibits viruses and works against pulmonary infections, see https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33672333/ and https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32562826/.

  • Andra Posted May 25, 2021 4:23 pm

    I moved it with my elderly father about 3 months ago and he smokes like a California wildfire. I find that I cough more now than I did before. Any thoughts on what to take/do? He is 81 and he isn’t going to stop smoking, so that’s out. I’ve tried some houseplants but I’m reallllly bad at that, they are alive, but barely. Any teas, herbs, etc that might be helpful?

    • The Lost Herbs Posted May 26, 2021 9:39 pm

      Hi Andra,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Ginseng could be therapeutic for nicotine addiction because it may weaken the effect of dopamine, a neurotransmitter in the brain that is associated with pleasure and is released when smoking tobacco. Drinking ginseng tea could reduce the appeal of smoking and make it less enjoyable.

      Valerian roots have powerful sedative properties that help in dealing with nicotine withdrawal symptoms like anxiety, stress, and restlessness. The best way to consume is by making tea.

      Honey also plays an important role in handling the cessation process of smoking. As it is loaded with beneficial vitamins, enzymes, and proteins, which help in quitting the habit of smoking with ease.

      Cayenne helps in desensitizing the respiratory system to all addictive things like smoking. Include the spice in your diet or add a few pinches to a glass of water and consume daily for best results.

      If your father still likes smoking, he can try smoking herbs instead. It’s a healthier alternative: https://thelostherbs.com/healing-herbs-you-can-smoke/

      God bless!

    • crazysquirrel Posted May 27, 2021 8:00 pm

      You can buy a portable HEPA air filtering machine.
      Another machine is called smokeeater.
      Or just open some windows?

  • Lin Posted May 25, 2021 4:25 pm

    Parsley is antiviral. Take in tea or pills.

  • Leslie Posted May 25, 2021 4:54 pm

    I just learned that from Mike Adams and need to get some made. I have been using Fennel essential oil to combat the cold/flu.

  • Henry G Siracusan Posted May 25, 2021 9:15 pm

    Thanks Nicole, Another herb for clearing out lungs is one of the best ever, though it is little known or used outside of the Southwest- Yerba Mansa. If you want to know more about it, you should contact my Herbal Medicine Teacher, Dara Saville on her Website, Albuquerque Herbalism.com. It is her favorite herb and she can wax poetic about its wonderous properties.

    • The Lost Herbs Posted May 26, 2021 9:39 pm

      Hi Henry,

      Thank you so much for your suggestions.
      I will check that out!

      God bless!

  • David H. Posted May 26, 2021 2:29 pm

    Interesting, but why would you not include Mullein on this list?? Roots, flowers, seeds and those wonderful leaves are all useful in all aspects of medicinal care ….. Even dried and added to a pipe for smoking relief is almost instant for bronchial and lung remedies.

    • The Lost Herbs Posted May 26, 2021 9:44 pm

      Hi David,

      Thank you so much for your comment. Mullein is indeed a safe and profound respiratory tonic. It helps to open the lungs, eases spasms, tightness, and cough, and soothes irritation and dryness.

      We mentioned the use of Mullein for lung in our previous article: https://thelostherbs.com/healing-herbs-you-can-smoke/ and we will also post a detailed article soon about Mullein in our weekly column: “Plant Of The Week!” Stay Tuned 🙂

      God bless!

  • Jan Posted May 26, 2021 9:28 pm

    My husband had a problem with STREP throat and would run a high fever. We always kept OSHA ROOT available and it took care of it immediately. We purchased the Osha Root from Hanna’s Herb Shop in Boulder, Colorado

    • The Lost Herbs Posted May 26, 2021 9:47 pm

      Hi Jan,

      Thank you for sharing your experience with us.
      I’m glad to hear that your husband recovered immediately. Osha Root is indeed very useful in reducing inflammation throughout the entire system.

      God bless!

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