Anise Seed Tea for Respiratory Function

The ancient Mediterranean civilizations held the seeds of anise in high regard. Known for its licorice flavor, anise seeds became a valuable spice and a popular trading commodity. The seeds were particularly popular in ancient Rome, where they were used to make a spice cake called mustaceum, commonly served at feasts and weddings, and possibly the source of the wedding cake tradition. They were also well known for their health benefits, particularly for alleviating a persistent cough. Today, anise seed tea provides a natural remedy to aid and promote good respiratory health.

Big Bowl of Anise Seeds

Frequent Respiratory Issues

The quality of our breathing has a direct effect on the quality of our life; thus, when breathing is impeded by illness, disease or other factors, it becomes a hindrance, sometimes to even the simplest everyday activities. While many things may interfere with healthy respiratory function, some of the most common factors include:

Infection: Some of the most common infections in the world are respiratory infections. Viruses such as the rhinovirus (common cold) and influenza are found in countries worldwide, especially during the colder months of the year. Though varying in severity, even the mildest respiratory infection can interfere with respiratory function and be acutely uncomfortable.

Allergies: Millions of people suffer from some degree of allergies, especially respiratory allergies. An allergy is an overreaction of the immune system to a perceived threat. In the case of respiratory allergies, this is often caused by dust, pollen, pet dander or environmental pollutants. The histamine reaction causes the release of mucous, which floods the sinuses, and can also inflame the airways.

Asthma: In the U.S. alone, more than 8% of adults and 9% of children have been diagnosed with asthma. This disease causes inflammation and constricting of the airway, limiting the ability to breathe. Asthma is often aggravated by environmental factors such as pollutants, and can also flare up during physical activity.

COPD: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, also known as COPD, is a term for any of several diseases that inhibit the ability to breathe in and out normally. Chronic bronchitis, which is an ongoing cough caused by inflammation of the bronchial tubes, is one form of COPD. Emphysema, another type of COPD, is caused by lung damage that limits the ability to exhale, and is often related to smoking.

Cystic Fibrosis: This disease is caused by poor drainage of mucous from the lungs. The limited lung capacity leads to shallow breathing and increases the risk of respiratory infection.

Large Bowl of Anise

How Anise Seed Tea Supports Respiration

Anise seed tea offers many beneficial properties that support healthy respiratory function. It is known as a natural expectorant, capable of stimulating the drainage of mucous from the sinuses and the airway. This helps to bring relief to a chronic cough and runny nose, clearing the airway to allow for better breathing. Anise seed tea can also shorten the recovery time of a respiratory infection due to its natural antiseptic properties. Several of its main constituents, such as thymol, anethole and terpineol, relax the airways and can reduce heavy coughing. Its antispasmodic effects may also help to relax the airways and may assist with asthmatic symptoms as well.