Mucus is actually important in keeping our systems running properly and we have it throughout our body. You can think of it as an oil that keeps an engine running smoothly. On the other hand, phlegm is a particular kind of mucus that our lungs make when it is trying to expel irritants like inflammatory cells from an infection, irritants that cause allergic reactions, and other forms of bacteria.

Phlegm build-up is characterized by coughing, a runny nose, trouble breathing, and a constant need to clear your throat. A normal phlegm can be easily coughed out, but sometimes it needs a little wheedling. But before going straight to a pharmacy and getting yourself a decongestant (which sometimes makes the phlegm thicker making it even more difficult to cough out), try these effective remedies for reducing phlegm:

1. Lemons

Lemons contain strong antibacterial agents and Vitamin C that boosts out immune system. The most effective way to get your lemon fix is to squeeze a fresh organic lemon and put 2 tablespoons in a cup of warm water. You can sweeten it with some honey (which is going to be the next remedy that we are going to tackle) to add some flavor.

2) Honey

Honey has been widely considered as a demulcent, which soothes your throat. Honey also contains a compound called dextromethorphan which is commonly found in cough syrups. One way of taking honey as a phlegm remedy is by ingesting a tablespoon of it with a pinch of black pepper. This will help you fight infection. You can also add honey to a warm water (much better if you add lemon juice) and enjoy it multiple times a day but watch your sugar intake if you are diabetic.

3) Steam

One of the best ways to loosen up your stubborn phlegm in your chest and throat is steaming. A hot steam gradually liquefies the phlegm making it easier to cough it up. You can try to have a long, hot shower, keeping the doors closed and the fan off to seal in all the steam. You can also fill a large bowl or basin with boiling water then lean over the bowl with your head covered with a towel and inhale the steam as long as you want to loosen the phlegm. Just be careful as it might get you burned with this method. Try to approach it gently and don’t put your face too close to the water and ensure that there aren’t anyone nearby that could accidentally tip the water over.

4) Salt Water

Salt water is a wonderful remedy for three reasons. First, it relaxes your throat. Second, salt water is a powerful antibacterial compound and third, it can reduce inflammation. Just dissolve a pinch of salt in a glass of warm water and gargle it. Repeat it several times a day for better efficiency.

5) Turmeric

Today, turmeric is considered one of the super spices, but do you know that people of ancient times have been using it for medical purposes? Turmeric’s antiseptic properties can kill bacteria that causes excessive mucus secretions. Moreover, turmeric also strengthens our immune system. To relieve tough phlegm, simply add a teaspoon of turmeric in a glass of water and gargle it. Adding it to a glass of milk (for a spicy and soothing drink) will also loosen stubborn phlegm.

Prolonged coughing in an attempt to get rid of stubborn phlegm in your chest and throat is very frustrating and can irritate the walls of your throat which hurts your chest and ribs. If you ever had a cough and you feel that phlegm is already building up, do not hesitate to try these natural home remedies to soften the mucus making it easy to get rid of out of your body.


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