By Cathy Schram

Herbal Help For Smoking Cessation

Q: My New Year’s Resolution is to finally stop smoking. Any advice?

A: That is a great resolution! Whether you are dependent on your cigarettes or just simply enjoy them, either way, they are not healthy for you or the people around you. Nicotine acts as a stimulant on the central nervous system. It causes your adrenaline production to increase thereby raising your blood pressure and heart rate and alters the levels of some hormones. These changes usually create a feeling of relaxation, which is one of the reasons smoking becomes a habit. Smoking has a detrimental effect on nutrition. Smokers break down their Vitamin C about twice as fast as non-smokers do. Other antioxidants are depleted as well. Anyone who smokes is essentially speeding his or her aging process. Your skin will suffer the effects of smoking.

There are many different strategies for overcoming a smoking dependency. You must find the right approach for you. Fortunately, there is help in the form of a natural product that will help you deal with the withdrawal symptoms. It is called Lobelia, aka Indian tobacco. This herb can help quench the desire for tobacco, while helping to strengthen and rebuild the respiratory system. The lobelia helps promote stronger and deeper breathing. Please remember, if you use lobelia, more is not better. Lobelia taken in large doses may cause nausea or vomiting. Always use according to package directions. If you are having feelings of increased anxiety, nervousness, depression and/or insomnia during this time, you may want to consider adding St. John’s Wort. Alfalfa added can provide nutritional support to the body and improve digestion.

Did you know that smoking increases the risk of catching a cold? Tobacco smoke paralyzes the cilia (hairlike lining of the nose and throat), reducing the capacity of clearing the passages and move mucus to the outside.
So, do yourself a favor and give these herbs a try!

This herb information is for health education purposes only. It is not intended to replace the services of licensed health practitioners. Consult with a physician for any condition that requires professional care.

Do you have questions about herbs or vitamins? Send them to Cathy Schram, CNHP and Certified Herbalist. Write to: Herbs & More, 16021 Manchester Rd., Ellisville, MO 63011.