More than 7 million people die because of smoking according to a report from WHO (world health organization), 12% of smokers live in India itself. Nicotine causes addiction which is the major reason why quitting this is so difficult .
There are many herbs and remedies that can aid you in this journey of getting rid of smoking and help a person to attain a better life .
Herbs and Natural remedies have various properties which can help in reducing the withdrawal symptoms of Nicotine and the urge to smoke ,these herbs and remedies support the nervous system, flush out the harmful toxins, restores the depleted nutrients and support the respiratory system.
Read on to find out the various herbs and remedies which will be helpful to you in this journey.
Why Smoking Is So Addictive?
People are addicted to smoking because of “Nicotine”, it is the addictive substance which is found in cigarettes. It takes nicotine just 10 seconds to reach a person‘s mind, this addictive substance gives the feeling of pleasure and energy.
The more we smoke, the more our body becomes dependent on nicotine. Every time we smoke, nicotine and other harmful substances from smoking get into our bloodstream and reach towards our brain. As a matter of fact, nicotine reaches faster to our brain than other drugs which are injected through veins.
When nicotine reaches our brain it makes our brain release chemical messengers, when nicotine is inhaled , epinephrine is released which makes the person feel a high & dopamine is also released which gives the feeling of pleasure.
Nicotine affects every part of our body in many ways. It makes our heart beat more rapidly, increases our pulse, affect metabolism, blood pressure is also increased. It makes the passage of blood flow very difficult as the veins begin to tighten.
As a person continues to smoke his body develops a high level of tolerance for nicotine, thus the person begins to smoke more and more, thus creating an addiction.
Withdrawal symptoms of Nicotine
Nicotine withdrawal symptoms depends from person to person and also on duration and quantity of cigarettes a person has been smoking. The symptoms can go on for weeks and even months .
Nicotine withdrawal symptoms are emotional, physical and mental, the first 3 to 5 days are the most difficult one.
The symptoms are as follows:
7) Weight gain
8) Lost of concentration
Ayurvedic Remedies To Help Quit Smoking
Ginger is known to reduce the urge to smoke. Another benefit is that it helps in reducing nausea which is one of the withdrawal symptoms. The Sulphur compounds in ginger also aid in lowering the addiction.
Soak ginger in lemon juice and store it. Every time there is an urge to smoke take a piece of ginger and suck on it.
Ajwain / Caraway Seeds
Ajwain is known to reduce the craving to smoke, it is also know to reduce the harmful effects of nicotine.
When there is an urge to smoke, have few seeds of ajwain and keep them in your mouth. They are not so palatable and taste sharp, but do not spit and just keep sucking on to them. Chew and swallow after 10-15 minutes. This when done regularly can help in quit smoking.
Basil Leaves (Tulasi)
Basil leaves are very useful when it comes to quit smoking. Tulasi have a wide variety of benefits associated with our lungs .
Whenever there is urge to smoke, just chew on some raw fresh basil leaves. It is easily available in most Indian homes. If a person smokes after eating tulasi leaves this causes burning sensation in the throat.
Licorice / Mulethi
Mulethi is known to aid in quitting smoking naturally. The taste of Mulethi controls the urge of smoking and helps in giving relief from smokers cough.
Chew the roots of mulethi whenever there is an urge.
Valerian Roots are useful in lowering the withdrawal symptoms of smoking like restlessness, depression and anxiety. It is a mild sedative hence it calms the nervous system.
Valerian Roots can be consumed in the form of a tea.
Black Pepper Oil
Studies have shown that Black pepper oil aids in providing relief from withdrawal symptoms of nicotine.
Take a drop of black pepper oil on a tissue and inhale it to suppress the smoking urge.
Neem Leaves Or Cloves
Chewing neem leaves frequently can help resist the urge to smoke. Similar effect is achieved by chewing on to Cloves.
Soak the Harad in water for 2 to 3 minutes and chew it. Use the black harad and not the brown one. The black harad is raw and is specially beneficial as a rejunvnative herb.
Dalchini / Cinnamon
Add Dalchini powder to honey and mix it well. Lick 3 times a day. This mixture can help in reducing the urge to smoke.
Saunf (Fennel) And Ajwain (Caraway Seeds)
A mixture of fennel (100g) and Ajwain(100 g) seeds can be useful in resisting the urge to smoke .
Step 1- Mix fennel and Ajwain well .
Step 2- Squeeze lemon on it .
Step 3- Add black salt to it . Mix all ingredients properly.
Step 4- Let the mixture stay like that for few hours.
Step 5- Roast the mixture on a low flame for a few minutes.
Eat this mixture 3 or 4 times it will make a difference in the long run .
Ginseng reduces the effect on dopamine, it aids in prevention of dopamine a neurotransmitter which is associated with pleasure from being released, it can be very helpful lowering the withdrawal effects of nicotine.
Ginseng powder can be taken in the morning during breakfast.
Ayurvedic Herbs To Quit Smoking
Triphala can be useful in cleansing the toxic substances which have saturated in the person‘s body due to long term smoking. Smoking causes saturation and deposition of tar and toxic compounds in the body.
Triphala has cleansing effect which can help in removing these substances from our body. You can take it before sleeping everyday.
Triphala also is a mild laxative so it is better to stay away from it if you suffer from loose stools.
Turmeric , Amla, Licorice & Ginger
These herbs should be taken in powdered form and should be mixed well together and made into a form of a ball. The mixture is know to be helpful to quit smoking by reducing the urge to smoke. You can take this once daily.
Alternatively, a combination of Bala, Ashwagandha and Shatavari can be helpful in detoxification as well.
Jatasmi, Chamomile & Brahmi
A herbal tea made from the combination of these 3 herbs can be useful to help a person quit smoking Take equal proportions of the above and mix them together, add them in hot boiling water and let it sit for 5 minutes and consume.
Remedy For Nicotine Withdrawal
Mukta pishti(10 g)
Gotu kola(50 g),
Mix it all well together, have it thrice a day with milk.
Alternative Methods That Ayurveda Recommends
Ayurvedic herbal smoking aka Dhumapana is recommended for quitting smoking.
Ayurveda says that a person should inhale herbal smoke to treat the onset of diseases which take place on body parts above our shoulder. It is very useful in treating the diseases arising from kapha and vata .
The smoke helps in cleaning the nasal passages and increases the vatta and kapha.
Dhumpana can be used to overcome nicotine addiction.
Ingredients used for making dhumpana
1) Neem(2 grams )
2) Turmeric(2 grams )
3) Blackgram(2 grams)
4) Saffron(1 gram)
5) Guggulu(8 grams )
Step 1 – Breakdown the Guggul well.
Step 2- Add neem ,turmeric, blackgram and saffron to it .
Step 3 – Mix it well.
Step 4- Add ghee and continue to mix it .
Step 5- Make a wick.
Step 6- Ghee easily catches fire ,hence you can smoke it .
Bhastrika is one of the basic pranayamas and breathing exercise in Yoga. It can help in removing the harmful and toxic substances caused from smoking in the upper respiratory tract.