Mullein: Overview

Mullein is a herbal remedy with a long history of treating respiratory disorders including asthma, coughs, and tuberculosis.

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Mullein (Verbascum thapsus) is commonly seen along ditches in North America, where it looks like a 2- to 5-foot staff with yellow flowers clinging to the top quarter.  The leaves, which are large, soft and hairy, as well as the flowering tops are used medicinally.

Function; Why it is Recommended

Mullein contains high amounts of mucilage and saponins, making it an excellent agent for soothing mucous membranes.

Mullein seems to be particularly helpful – and has a history of use – for respiratory conditions including coughs, colds, emphysema, bronchitis, and asthma.


Mullein can be used as a tea, a tincture, or powdered directly.  Extracts have not shown to have any particular advantage over these other preparations as the active components are freely expressed in water.

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