30+ Natural & Home Remedies For Cough Categorized By Type Of Cough Being Treated
Contents At A Glance
- Overview Of Cough Remedies And Treatments
- Reference Chart for Type of Cough Remedy
- Warning About Honey For Babies
- Cough Suppressant Remedies
- How do cough suppressants work?
- Dark Chocolate as a Cough Suppressant
- Should you drink milk when you have a cough?
- More Cough Remedies
- Cough Expectorant Remedies
- Grandma’s Chicken Soup
- Is water a cough expectorant?
- Grapes & Raisins as a Cough Expectorant
- Combination Cough Suppressant & Cough Expectorant Remedies
- Honey Tips for Coughs
- Ginger: 2 Cough Remedies In 1
Overview Of Cough Remedies And Treatments
To help find the right cough remedy for your cough, CoughRemedyTips.com has provided the Quick Reference Guide below, which shows the suggested type of cough treatment recommended for different types of cough being treated.
The ultimate goal is to find a cough remedy that gives fast cough relief, while at the same time will serve as an effective treatment that supports the body’s natural recovery process.
Reference Chart for Type of Cough Remedy
Use the chart below to help determine what type of cough remedy is needed.
Further information, explanation, and tips are included below for your reference about which cough remedies fall under the category of cough suppressants and which cough remedies are recommended as cough expectorants.
Warning About Honey For Babies
Natural cough remedies are typically a better choice instead of an over the counter cough medicine; however, just because something is labeled natural or homemade that DOES NOT mean it’s safe for everyone. For example some herbal remedies can be toxic during pregnancy. It’s always a good idea to check with your pharmacist before using a natural or herbal cough remedy, especially if you have a medical condition or are pregnant.
Important: Many cough remedies include honey. For a baby cough DO NOT give honey to infants or babies under the age of 12 months because their digestive systems are not developed enough making them susceptible to infant botulism.
Cough Suppressant Remedies
Cough Suppressant Remedies: The section below contains an excellent assortment of some of the most effective homemade cough suppressant remedies.
Which type of cough conditions should be treated by cough suppressants?
Suppressants are recommended for non-productive dry cough conditions. Some, but not all, doctors may also recommend the use of suppressants for chesty, productive coughs as well. Please refer to the section below on combining suppressants and expectorants for more information.
How do cough suppressants work?
Cough suppressants reduce coughing by blocking the cough reflex and lessening the urge to cough.
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Barley & Beef Soup
Since barley is a natural cough suppressant try some barley soup to help relieve a nagging cough. This simple crock pot barley and beef soup recipe from OverTheKitchenCounter.com shown in the video above sounds delicious.
1 pound stew beef, 1/2 cup onion chopped, 2 ribs of diced celery, 2 medium carrots peeled & diced, 3/4 cup pot barley or pearl barley, 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, 6 cups beef broth.
Combine all ingredients in crock pot. Cook on low heat for 6 to 8 hours.
Dark Chocolate as a Cough Suppressant
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Dark chocolate contains large amounts of antioxidants, flavonoids, magnesium, zinc, and minerals. One of its valuable nutrients that has been proven to be effective against coughing is theobromine. Theobromine is a natural cough suppressant that works by suppressing the nerve responsible for coughing. It provides better results than over the counter medications, including codeine, and it does so without the unwanted side effects.
According to researchers, eating two ounces of dark chocolate (which equals 1000 mg of theobromine) will help suppress a cough for approximately four hours. If you’re counting calories, a two ounce chocolate bar has about 280 calories.
Hot Chocolate Made With Dark Chocolate & Honey
A comforting and soothing remedy for coughing is a nice cup of hot dark chocolate. But using a powdered hot chocolate mix from the market won’t do too much good as these mixes have lost over 80% of the valuable nutrients from the raw cocoa beans during processing. To get the most out of a hot chocolate cough remedy be sure to use a good quality dark chocolate bar.
Some people don’t care for the taste of dark chocolate because it can be very bitter. If that’s you or someone you know, try the dark chocolate in a hot chocolate beverage. When dark chocolate is melted down the taste and consistency completely changes giving it a smooth chocolaty flavor.
The video shown below demonstrates how to make your own homemade hot chocolate; however, you’ll want to be sure to use dark chocolate and honey for best results in easing your cough.
Our recipe for this hot chocolate cough remedy varies slightly from the above video utilizing the natural cough suppressants contained in dark chocolate and honey.
For one serving:
1 cup milk*
1 ounce of unsweetened, dark chocolate bar
1 tablespoon of honey
Heat milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Do not let it come to a boil. Chop the dark chocolate into small course pieces and add to the warm milk. If desired, save some chocolate shavings to sprinkle on top as a garnish. To keep the chocolate from burning or sticking to the bottom of the pan, stir with a whisk until the chocolate melts completely making sure the mixture does not come to a boil. Add the honey last to preserve the nutrients that could be lost during the heating process. Pour into your mug and garnish with the extra bits of dark chocolate if desired.
*Use your preferred choice of milk. Whole milk will give a slightly thicker, rich quality, but lowfat or skim milk will also work. Soy milk will also provide a nice thick consistency to your hot chocolate. Almond milk is an excellent choice because almonds are a natural cough suppressant.
Should you drink milk when you have a cough?
While many believe that milk increases mucus, there are mixed opinions on the subject. According to Dr. Noela Whitby of the National Council of Australia on dairy products and cough, the belief that milk creates mucus is a dangerous myth dating back to the 12th century and that there is no evidence to indicate that dairy foods cause excess mucus. Dr. Whitby states that people tend to confuse the coating on the back of the throat after drinking milk with mucus. The debate continues as to whether milk causes an increase in mucus.
Homemade Almond Milk
Making your own homemade almond milk takes less than a minute. Watch the video below demonstrate how incredibly simple and quick it is to make!
For one glass of almond milk:
1/4 cup raw organic almonds
1 cup pure filtered water
Place almonds and water in blender and blend for approximately 30 seconds. (In case you’re wondering, there’s no need to peel the skins off the almonds.)
For variations in flavor try adding some of the following to your fresh homemade almond milk:
- Vanilla Bean
- Sea Salt
- Agave Nectar
Serving suggestions for homemade almond milk as a suppressant for coughing:
- Cold Chocolate Almond Milk – In blender, add one teaspoon of natural organic cocoa powder to 8 ounces of fresh cold almond milk. Mixing with a blender is recommended as cocoa powder does not mix easily with cold milk.
- Hot Chocolate Almond Milk – Use the “Hot Chocolate with Dark Chocolate & Honey” recipe above, but add in your own homemade almond milk as your choice of milk. Creamy and delicious!
- Warm Almond Milk & Honey – Heat homemade almond milk in microwave or saucepan. Do not bring to a boil. Stir in 1 tablespoon of raw honey and enjoy! Smooth and soothing for a cough.
Honey-Almond Orange Juice
1 tablespoon finely ground almonds (approximately 6 almonds)
1 teaspoon raw honey
8 ounces fresh organic orange juice
Grind fresh almonds in a small coffee grinder until they are ground to a fine powder. Place orange juice, ground almonds, and honey in blender and blend for 20 to 30 seconds until well mixed. It’s delicious served cold or warm.
Pearl Barley & Almond Milk Pudding (similar to rice pudding)
Not only is this a delicious dessert, but it’s a dessert with a 1-2-3 punch!
1) It’s got protein; 2) it’s got fiber; and 3) barley is a natural cough suppressant!
(Bonus: Barley is also low in cholesterol, sodium, and saturated fat!)
2 1/2 cups water
1 cup pearl barley
1 cinnamon stick
1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds
Bring water to a boil in a large pot and then add the pearled barley and cinnamon stick. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 40 to 50 minutes until barley is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat, remove the cinnamon stick, and drain any excess water. Add the almond milk, vanilla, and honey, stirring until thoroughly combined. Cover and cook over low heat for an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm or cold. Garnish with sliced almonds.
Apple Cider Vinegar Cough Suppressant
1 teaspoon warm water
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon honey
Take every 4 hours as needed.
Hot Tea with Honey
Brew your favorite tea and add a teaspoon of honey for a soothing cough suppressant. Herbal teas that are most effective in relieving a persistent cough are thyme, sage, coltsfoot, mint and peppermint. Before taking herbal remedies, as with any remedy, it’s wise to check with your doctor first especially if you have a health condition such as high blood pressure, heart problems, or diabetes.
More Cough Remedies
Additional cough suppressant remedies can be found on the following pages on this website:
Cough Expectorant Remedies
Which cough conditions are best treated by cough expectorants?
Cough expectorants should be used when an individual has a chesty cough or wet cough, also known as a productive cough, in order to support and assists the body’s natural process to expel phlegm from the respiratory tract.
How do cough expectorants work?
A cough expectorant liquifies and thins the sticky mucus that has accumulated in the airways. This in turn loosens the phlegm so it becomes easier to cough up, enabling the cough to be more productive and less irritating. This process also clears the respiratory tract airways and also makes breathing easier because chest congestion is also relieved during this process.
Grandma’s Chicken Soup
Chicken soup as a cough and cold remedy is not just an old wives tale. It has been proven to be one of the best remedies around when you’re fighting a cough. Chicken broth is a natural expectorant that works by thinning mucus in the respiratory tract.
Use your favorite chicken soup recipe or try the delicious chicken soup remedy shown in the following video. This chicken soup recipe below is the actual recipe used by Dr. Stephen Rennard in his University of Nebraska Medical Center research lab when his research findings verified the benefits of chicken soup.
Is water a cough expectorant?
Water is one of the best cough expectorants you can use. Water helps to thin the mucus secretions. Doctors recommend that you drink 8 ounces of water every two hours when you have a chesty cough.
2 bunches of scallions, the white part and the root part only
2 medium ginger roots, unpeeled, scrubbed, and thinly sliced
Add the ginger slices and the root parts and white parts of the scallions to one quart of water in a medium saucepan. Cover, bring to a boil, and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain the liquid off the mixture to use for tea. This mixture can be used right away or stored in the refrigerator for later use.
If desired, add honey. For added flavor add your favorite tea bag to the mix.
Expectorant Blend Remedy of Herbal Tea, Honey, & More
Choose one of the following expectorant teas:
Eucalyptus Leaf Tea
Echinacea Immune Support with Elderberry
1 clove of garlic
1/2 of a lemon
1/2 to 1 teaspoon raw honey
1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
Place your choice of tea bag into the mug. Remove the outer shell of the fresh clove of garlic and squeeze it directly into the mug. Bring water for tea to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. Add boiling water to fill the mug. Using a hand juice squeezer add the juice from a half lemon to the mug. Add the desired amount of honey. Let the brew steep for 5 to 10 minutes, covering the mug to retain the benefits of the tea mixture.
This is a strong blend that may take some getting used to but it works. The garlic helps open nasal passages, the honey, lemon, and apple cider vinegar will soothe your cough while acting as an excellent expectorant.
Sip on this expectorant blend once or twice a day.
This expectorant cough remedy by YouTips4U is just one of a number of other helpful health related tips that can be found from this source.
Peppermint Tea & Honey
Menthol in peppermint is a key ingredient in thinning and loosening mucus. Brew a cup of peppermint tea by adding 1 teaspoon of peppermint leaves to 8 ounces of boiling water. Let it steep for at least five minutes. Pour through a strainer to remove the leaves and add raw honey.
Peppermint tea bags are available for purchase in most markets and health food stores for a more convenient option.
One to three cups of peppermint tea in a 24-hour period is recommended for a chesty cough.
Grapes & Raisins as a Cough Expectorant
Grapes: A Natural Cough Expectorant
Grapes are another excellent source of a natural cough expectorant. The grape skins and even the seeds contain powerful antioxidants and Vitamins C and E. It just doesn’t get any simpler than eating grapes or drinking grape juice as a home remedy for a nagging cough.
Grape Juice & Honey
This homemade grape juice and honey cough expectorant remedy is quick and easy to make, not to mention delicious.
8 ounces natural organic grape juice
1 teaspoon of raw honey
Raisin Cough Syrup
1/2 cup ground raisins
1/2 cup raw sugar
1 cup water
To grind raisins pour enough boiling water over the raisins to completely cover them and let stand for one hour. This process softens and plumps the raisins making them easier to grind up. Drain and cool the raisins and grind them in a food processor, meat grinder, or nut grinder. You may find it helpful to first lightly oil the food processor blades with cooking oil.
Place the ground raisins, sugar, and water in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat until the mixture thickens to a thick syrupy consistency. Store in a covered glass mason jar. Take four teaspoonfuls at bedtime and if needed during the daytime.
Horehound Cough Expectorant Syrup
To yield approximately one cup cough syrup:
3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) horehound
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) raw honey
2 cups water
You will also need:
1 pint mason jar with lid
1 half-pint mason jar with lid
Small metal strainer
Place the horehound in the pint sized jar and pour in boiling water until the jar is full. Let it stand for 6 to 8 hours. Strain the mixture to separate the infused liquid from the horehound by pouring through a small mesh strainer into a separate container. Be sure to press the horehound herb against the strainer to squeeze out all of the herb’s potent liquid.
Pour the strained liquid into a sauce pan and bring it to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the liquid infusion has reduced to approximately half the original amount of liquid. Stir in the honey and bring mixture just to a boil. Do not continue boiling so the honey will retain its nutrients.
Transfer the horehound cough syrup into the half-pint sized mason jar and wait until it cools before placing the lid on the jar. This cough expectorant remedy will keep in the refrigerator for two months.
Recommended dosage for adults is two teaspoonfuls and for children is one teaspoonful every 6 hours when needed for cough.
Lime & Honey Cough Syrup
1/2 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon raw honey
Simply mix together the lime juice and raw honey, adding a little water if necessary. Take this natural cough expectorant every 8 hours, as needed.
Violet & Cloves Cough Expectorant Remedy
Research studies support the longtime belief that violet plant makes a pleasant and effective remedy to help expel excess mucus and phlegm. Try out the following recipe for a violet tonic to assist with a chesty cough. Cloves are another effective cough expectorant.
For one serving:
1 cup boiling water
2 teaspoons dried violet
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 teaspoon raw honey
Pour boiling water over other ingredients, cover, and let stand overnight at room temperature. After approximately 8 hours, strain off the liquid and sip the room temperature mixture throughout the day.
Combination Cough Suppressant & Cough Expectorant Remedies
Combination Cough Suppressant & Cough Expectorant Remedies: In the following section are homemade cough remedies made from natural ingredients that by nature serve as both a suppressant and an expectorant.
As mentioned in the previous section on cough suppressants, there are mixed opinions among doctors and medical professionals as to whether the use of cough medicines which contain a combination of cough suppressant and expectorant is an effective treatment.
Doctors who do not recommend a combination suppressant and expectorant say that to do so is counter productive. The natural purpose of a productive cough is to cough up and expel phlegm; therefore, to suppress that process in a chesty cough is not in your best interest.
There are a number of doctors who will however, under certain circumstances, recommend using an expectorant during the daytime and a suppressant at night for a chesty cough. Although they do not normally recommend suppressants for productive, chesty coughs, these doctors do suggest to patients who are exhausted from constant coughing to use a suppressant at nighttime to calm the cough and allow for much needed rest and comfort. If you choose to try this method, always wait several hours between taking an expectorant and a suppressant.
Some doctors do however recommend using a combination cough medicine which contains both a suppressant and an expectorant when a cough is chesty and productive. Doctors who recommend the combo cough remedy say that it is not counter productive and what really happens is that the suppressant calms the cough while the expectorant thins the mucus which is then easily cleared out of the respiratory tract by the cilia (the microscopic hairs that line the airways).
Honey Tips for Coughs
Honey is an excellent ingredient for cough remedies because it’s a natural antibiotic helping the body resist infection. Honey also helps absorb water into the tissues which soothes a dry cough. Penn State researchers found honey improved coughs better than dextromethorphan (DM), the ingredient found in most OTC cough syrup.
Learn about the benefits of raw honey in the video below as it is believed to be more nutritious than processed honey because processed commercial honey partially destroys the enzymes and yeast needed to activate vitamins and minerals in the body.
Warm Milk & Honey with Vanilla
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons raw honey
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat milk on stove top or in microwave to just below the boiling point. Remove from heat and stir in honey and vanilla.
Homemade Lemon & Honey Cough Syrup
1 whole lemon
1 cups raw honey
Place the whole lemon in a saucepan and fill with enough water to cover the lemon. Heat the water to just below the boiling point and then simmer the lemon for five minutes. Warm up the honey in the microwave or saucepan. Once the lemon is cool enough to handle, roll the lemon back and forth under your hand on the counter top. This helps to obtain the most amount of juice possible from the lemon. Then cut the lemon in half and use a metal strainer as you squeeze the lemon’s juice directly into the warm honey. Mix thoroughly and store in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
Honey Lemon Ginger Cough Remedy
In the video below watch how to make a soothing hot beverage to calm your cough using honey, lemon, and ginger. Customize the flavor to your personal taste preference by adding more or less honey, as well as adding one of your favorite tea bags to the mix to give it that perfect touch.
Ginger: 2 Cough Remedies In 1
Ginger root (technically it’s actually the underground stem rather than the root) is an excellent choice when you have a cough. It is an example of an excellent natural product that serves both as an expectorant and suppressant.
A Slice of Ginger
Peel and slice a small sliver of ginger and use it the same way you would a cough drop, some people like to chew on it. Some describe the flavor of ginger as sweet and spicy, while others refer to it as pungent and too strong. It’s worth giving it a try as this remedy works quite well to calm a cough and is simple and inexpensive.
Homemade Honey Ginger Tea
4 thin slices of fresh ginger (add more if preferred)
1 cup water
1 teaspoon lime juice
2 tablespoons raw honey
Place the ginger in 1 cup of water and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and add the lime juice and raw honey.
Homemade Ginger Honey Cough Syrup
Only two ingredients!
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger juice
1 teaspoon raw honey
Watch the video above and learn to make your own fresh ginger honey cough syrup (by Living By Design). This inexpensive and simple recipe demonstrates how to peel, grate, and squeeze the ginger juice from the grated pulp. Then simply add and thoroughly mix in the raw honey. Take one teaspoon every morning and night.
Doctor Recommended Cough Remedy & Smoothie
Be sure and watch this video for a natural cough remedy recommended by The Doctors that’s also a healthy smoothie that you can drink anytime. This recipe calls for grapes with seeds, lemons, honey, and cayenne pepper.
The grape skins and seeds are filled with antioxidants containing Vitamin E and Vitamin C. You will definitely need a blender that can handle grinding up the grape seeds.
Honey will coat the throat and sooth your cough as well as fight bacteria. Remember that babies under 12 months must not be given honey as they are susceptible to botulism because their digestive tracts are not yet fully developed.
Lemon is added to serve as a natural expectorant by clearing out the mucus and also help sooth and irritated throat caused by coughing.
Now the final ingredient is the cayenne pepper which not only gives this smoothie a little kick and a bit of a gritty texture, but it contains capsicum which clears mucus from the lungs and also promotes good healthy lung tissue.
Flaxseed for Coughs
Flaxseed and flaxseed oil, also known as linseed oil, come from an annual plant called the flax plant.
Often referred to as a super-food, flaxseeds and flaxseed oil does not contain the same nutrients. For example flaxseed contains lignans which are helpful against cancer, while flaxseed oil contains 50% or more of the essential omega-3 fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).
Flaxseed is safe for most people. Too much flaxseed may cause increased bowel movements or diarrhea. Individuals with pre-existing health conditions should consult with their doctor before using.
Flaxseed Honey Lemon Cough Syrup
1 cup water
1 tablespoons whole, dark brown flaxseeds
2 tablespoons raw honey
[amount and type of sweetener may be altered]
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
Boil flaxseeds in water just until it begins to thicken and remove from heat immediately.
Using a strainer, strain out and discard the seeds.
Add the raw honey and lemon juice.
Pour this freshly made cough syrup into an insulated container or thermos and take one tablespoon as needed.
Mixture will initially be a thick gel, but will settle into a more palatable liquid as it sets.
Discard the unused portion after a 24 hour period.
Yummy Multi-Herb & Spice Honey Cough Remedy
Watch the video above and learn Sophia Uliano’s natural cough remedy made from a combination of herbs, spices, honey, and water that works quite effectively.
2 tablespoons fresh thyme (or 1 tablespoon dried thyme)
2 tablespoons fresh sage (or 1 tablespoon of dried sage)
1 tablespoon dried chamomile
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
4 cups distilled water
4 tablespoons raw honey
Place herbs, spices, and distilled water in large saucepan. Heat on high bringing it to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 40 minutes. When mixture has reduced down from 4 cups to 2 cups, pour into a separate container using a stainless steel sieve to remove the solid herbs and spices from the liquid.
Add and mix in the raw honey. Pour cough remedy into a tinted cough medicine bottle. This natural cough remedy may be stored for up to 3 months in a cool dark place.
Adults – 3 teaspoons three to four times per day
Children under 12 years – 2 teaspoons three times per day