Thursday, December 22, 2011

Horehound Lozenges: The Homemade Remedy For Sore Throats, Coughs, and Asthma


Horehound is a perennial herb from the mint family. Known for it's bitter taste and incredible curative properties, it is used primarily in the treatment of respiratory and bronchial illnesses--such as sore throats, coughs, and asthma.

It acts as an expectorant as it loosens phlegm in the chest. Marrubiin, one of the compounds in horehound, stimulates bronchial secretions thereby helping to break up congestion. Research also indicates that marrubiin acts as an antibiotic as well as an anti-viral.

Additional Benefits of Horehound

In addition to the respiratory system, horehound is also beneficial for the digestive system. In fact, horehound may help with all of the following:

  • Intestinal gas
  • Nausea
  • Parasites
  • Jaundice
  • Sore Throats
  • Cough
  • The common cold
  • Asthma

Horehound is often prepared as a syrup or tea. However, our family prepares horehound lozenges to have on hand for a quick go-to remedy, should the need arise.

Horehound Lozenge Recipe


Ingredients

-1 cup dried horehound leaves
-1 cup water
-1 1/2 cup raw, local honey

Equipment

-stainless steel pot
-cheesecloth
-spoon
-cookie sheet
-candy thermometer (optional)

Directions:
  1. In a small stainless steel pot, boil the horehound leaves and water, covered, for 25 minutes.
  2. Cool and strain the mixture using a cheesecloth.
  3. Reserve the liquid and compost the leaves.
  4. Add the honey to the liquid, return to the pot, and bring to a boil once again.
  5. Once boiling reduce to a simmer.
  6. Cook mixture, stirring constantly, until the syrup reaches 300 degree F (this will take a while). Or, if you're like me and don't have a candy thermometer, use the "test" (see below).
  7. Grease a cookie sheet with butter or coconut oil and pour in the syrup.
  8. When the syrup has cooled and is pliable, begin pulling off small piece and rolling between the palms of greased hand, form a small ball. Work quickly as the mixture hardens pretty fast. I like to institute the help of little hands! The children love helping at this step:)
  9. Allow lozenges to cool on pan.
  10. Store in a cool, dry place.
Notes

-The "test." I do not own a candy thermometer so I use the "test" method when making this remedy. To insure that the syrup has reached the right temperature/consistency, I place just a drop or two of the syrup into a bowl full of ice water. If the syrup turns and stays hard (like a cough drop) then you know it's ready. If it is still soft and sticky, it needs to keep cooking.

-Yes, these lozenges will have a slightly bitter taste. That is part of what makes them so effective as an expectorant.

-The yield is dependent on the size of your drops. I like to make some larger for adults and some smaller for the children.

-I purchase some of my herbs from a local health food store that sells herbs in bulk. Otherwise, I like to purchase from Mountain Rose Herbs or The Bulk Herb Store.

-Check here to find a source for raw, local honey.

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DISCLAIMER: The statements made here are the sole opinion of the author and have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration. These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure or prevent any disease. This notice is required by the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. Please consult a medical professional prior to using this remedy.

19 Comments:

At December 22, 2011 at 7:52 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do remember horehound candies as a kid; my dad had COPD and asthma and sucked on these ALL THE TIME!

 
At December 22, 2011 at 7:54 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anybody have any suggestions for motion sickness? My 7 yr old gets carsick. Fortunately we've never had a vomiting episode! But she is miserable. And we live on some country roads, not to mention the current trend of 'stay-cations'!

 
At December 22, 2011 at 11:57 AM , Anonymous Stacy Makes Cents said...

Another one to print.....I really need to buy that book you're using!

 
At December 22, 2011 at 12:43 PM , Blogger Jessica said...

Neato! we'll have to do this!

 
At December 22, 2011 at 12:43 PM , Blogger KAT said...

These look very interesting Ill HAVE To find time to try it out too.
For motion sickness I heard that nibbling on ginger snap cookies helps. or sipping on gingerale
KAT

 
At December 22, 2011 at 2:23 PM , Blogger Tammy said...

Sounds great! I do have one question - why use raw honey when you are going to boil it? Doesn't that erase the benefit of raw honey?

@Anon - you could try sea bands for the motion sickness.

 
At December 22, 2011 at 3:34 PM , Blogger Andrea said...

@Tammy Excellent point concerning the honey! It's just habit;) And it's what I have on hand.

 
At December 22, 2011 at 4:38 PM , Anonymous Hannah Elise said...

I love this idea, but I can't help but wonder if I can even use them. *wah* :( During my teen years I developed an allergy - I have never been tested for it but we think it is menthol, as, for example, I can handle the DayQuil gelcaps but when I had the liquid, I reacted... and the only difference in ingredients that we could see was menthol, for the throat-soothing properties. I've also reacted to Halls cough drops, Ricola cough drops, mint candies/gums/ice creams. And yet, my JASON SeaFresh toothpaste involves mint... and I don't react to THAT. *head scratch*

I would love to know if I could have these or not. Maybe I'll just have to make some up and try one with Benadryl on hand. Even if I can't have them, my husband could.

 
At December 22, 2011 at 7:40 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon - my daughter always used wrist wraps with pressure points and never got sick again - purchase at any drug store.

 
At December 23, 2011 at 6:10 AM , Blogger Mr. H. said...

Excellent post, we grew a couple large patches of horehound this year and plan on using it medicinally next year...this is just the recipe we have been looking for. Thank you for sharing it.:)

 
At December 25, 2011 at 10:31 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

ginger is great for nausea. you can get it in chewable candy form or in pill form.

 
At December 25, 2011 at 9:21 PM , Blogger Kelly said...

Very cool! Will have to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing.

 
At December 26, 2011 at 6:23 AM , Anonymous Teresa said...

Very interesting~I tend to have allergies to honey, so I wonder if I could find another way to make those lozenges.

 
At December 26, 2011 at 6:40 AM , Blogger Andrea said...

@Teresa You can substitute the honey for 2 cups of sugar:)

 
At December 26, 2011 at 8:47 AM , Blogger Michelle L. said...

Cool tutorial and what a fascinating blog!

 
At December 26, 2011 at 10:50 AM , Anonymous KarenLynn@Lil'SuburbanHomestead said...

I am a huge believer in hore hound drops! They work!

 
At December 26, 2011 at 10:55 AM , Anonymous Jeanette said...

This is awesome. I'll have to order the horehound.

 
At December 27, 2011 at 10:19 AM , Anonymous Jill@ RealFoodForager.com said...

Thanks for linking your great post to FAT TUESDAY. This was very interesting! Hope to see you next week!

Be sure to visit RealFoodForager.com on Sunday for Sunday Snippets – your post from Fat Tuesday may be featured there!

http://realfoodforager.com/2011/12/fat-tuesday-december-27-2011/

 
At December 28, 2011 at 12:06 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

DISCLAIMER: The statements made here are the sole opinion of the author and have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

This is even more of an encouragement than a warning! Thanks for sharing this info and keep up the good work ~Cohesive1

 

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