Ask an herbalist: Stubborn mucus

Avis asks:

Hello! My ND gave me a herbal tincture that includes astragalus, eyebright,horehound,prunus) take 1 teaspoon 3 times a day. And herbal tea/tussin drink twice a day. I have mucus in my chest that isn't loosening and may have to go to the Dr. Are there any traditional meds thar may interact with these herbs?


Hello dear, 

Well i see they have gone the way of throwing a complicated kitchen sink blend at you and didn't give you much guidance. Meaning they should have discussed the potential interaction of each and every herb in the blend with you and any meds you may have been on. While I won't do the NDs job for them I can tell you what I would do if I really needed to break up this gunk in my chest. 


I'd use one safe simple plant ally that's not likely to interact with any meds I may be talking. 




I'd be making and drinking a quart of mullein infusion blended with whole fat milk (it's a myth that dairy causes mucus in fact she does the opposite.)  Every single day!


Mullein is very lung specific and absolutely blows the herbs you mentioned above out of the water when it comes to thinning out/helping us cough up the crap in our lungs!

Whole milk also acts as a thinner so together I've never seen the combo not clear out a stuck chest. 

An infusion is crazy easy: 


Place one ounce by weight of dried mullein leaf in a quart size jar. 

Cover with boiling water up to the very top of the jar, stir then add a bit more water. 


Cap and let set 8 hours. 

 Strain through a tightly woven cloth (because mullein has tiny hairs you don't want to be drinking)

Add in half the amount of whole milk (so if you had 2 cups of infusion add 1 cup whole milk)

Warm back up and add honey to taste, drink & repeat. 

I personally would do this daily for a week before I resorted to seeing a doctor. 

I would also be sure to be taking steam baths daily even if my only access was a steaming pot of salt water with my head under a towel with the pot under the towel as well so I breathed in the steam. Because salty water steam also thins mucus.

I hope some of this ends up being helpful! 

Kindest Regards, 


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