This unusual flower, with gentle, yellow flowers, a long stalk, and fluffy, hairy leaves has been used as a valuable herbal medicine for centuries.
Native to Europe, northern Africa, and Asia, it is thought that Mullein was introduced to the Native Americans by the early settlers where it was quickly incorporated into their healing tradition.
Mullein is a versatile herb, healing for us in so many ways, but did we also mention that is equally delicious? Luckily, it’s a very tasty tea (some of them really aren’t) – that way you can get the incredible healing benefits and enjoy the rich, refreshing aroma.
It’s a gentle herb, so you can drink it quite often as a refreshing drink, but let’s take a look at the impressive and versatile benefits.
Mullein is demulcent – meaning it contains mucilage that coats and soothes irritated mucus membranes. It is also an expectorant – meaning it helps to expel congestion from the lungs.
As a cross between the demulcents and expectorants, Mullein is effective in helping conditions such as bronchitis with a persistent cough, dry hacking coughs, whooping cough, colds, flu, and sinusitis.It also reduces inflammation, helping your lungs relax and stopping the spasms, which is very helpful with dry, unproductive coughs and asthma.
Mullein can be used to help to detoxify the lungs after quitting smoking.Breathing in the steam from its leaves or consuming the tea can help to break up and clear out the tar that has accumulated in the lungs. It can also help to cleanse and soothe the bronchial tubes and strengthen the lungs.
Mullein’s antiviral properties work well with the respiratory benefits we mentioned above.
Colds, flus, influenza, and other viral illnesses often go along with respiratory problems, so Mullein is a great choice when you feel you’re starting to come down with something, or as an additional ally to help you get back to your feet.Mullein also helps with the herpes virus.For additional anti-viral power, try combining it with Lemon balm.
Mullein oil is a potent disinfectant with strong antimicrobial properties that can treat both internal and external infections.
Internally, it has been known to treat infections in the ear, colon, urinary tract (including a vaginal yeast infection), and kidneys.When applied externally, it can help to fight infections on the skin.
Additionally, a study showed it is effective against several species of disease-causing bacteria including Klebsiella pneumonia, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis and E. coli.
This makes it helpful for disinfecting wounds, soothing burns, and treating hemorrhoids.
While pneumonia is a serious disease that should always be treated by qualified health professionals, using Mullein during respiratory flu can help to help to keep the lungs clear and may prevent pneumonia from starting.
Mullein contains a compound called verbascoside which has an anti-inflammatory action and is particularly helpful in easing joint and muscle pain.
With both anti-inflammatory and pain-killing properties, Mullein tea or Mulein infused oil can help bursitis, rheumatism, joint and muscle pain, muscle spasms.It also naturally relieves headaches.
Earache / Ear Infections
Mullein is mostly popular as an ingredient of eardrops -one of the most popular herbal remedies for earache and ear infections.Mullein flowers are normally infused in olive oil and garlic to treat this uncomfortable affliction. The astringent, antibacterial and antifungal activity of Mullein combined with garlic can help to get rid of outer and middle ear infections.
You can find instructions on how to make a Mullein infused oil in the Preparation/Dosage.
Herb for Smoking
Although it sounds surprising that a herb that’s good for the lungs is also used for smoking, it’s true!The Navajo were known to smoke the leaves to treat asthma and to clear lung congestion.Smoking as a habit is definitely not good for the lungs, but smoking Mullein occasionally is actually very healthy! When you feel that your lungs are stuck and congested, the smoke of Mullein will help widen the air pathways and open up your lungs.Or, if you are looking for a way to replace tobacco in your life – look no further! Smoking Mullein will help with the craving while healing and cleaning your lungs at the same time.You can make your own mix to smoke, adjusting it to what you like (have a peek at our blog)
The mucus clearing benefits of Mullein don’t stop at clearing mucus from the lungs!
It can also be used to remove the layer from the small intestine. Too much mucus in the small intestine can interfere with nutrient uptake and compromise the body’s ability to deliver nutrients into the bloodstream.Mullein replaces the “bad” mucus with a healing mucilage that coats and soothes the gut wall and provides lubrication that enables an easier and smoother bowel movement.It helps with constipation, diarrhea, hemorrhoids, and helps your body eliminate toxins easily.