Black Ginger Tea For Cough With Phlegm

Immune health is everything at the moment. In Chinese medicine, healthy immunity relates to Lung Qi. Lung Qi is the energy that governs the the upper chest area. If you have good Lung Qi you will have good function of:

  • Governs overall energy
  • Allows energy to descend in the body
  • Regulates the water passages
  • Opens to the skin and body hair

So issues with Lung Qi could manifest as fatigue, shortness of breath, oedema (especially the upper body) and improper sweating.

A phlegmy cough can be seen as too much damp in the Lung, often coming from the Spleen energy which governs digestion. Phlegm harbours pathogens and can cause inflammation, as it sticks to membranes and impairs normal functions.

This is a traditional Ayurvedic home remedy for cough with phlegm: black ginger tea.

Black Tea

Black tea is beneficial for the body given it has phytochemicals and polyphenols. It also contains small amounts of caffeine which stimulate your organs mildly. Tea can prevent cancer and contains antioxidants, and is rather calming after a busy day.


As a herb, fresh ginger or sheng jiang in Chinese is key to wellbeing. Ginger warms the stomach and spleen channels, is warming, pungent and can resolve phlegm. Dry ginger is better for very cold and profuse phlegm. Cold phlegm will be white, clear and usually profuse. Traditional Chinese Medicine is very holistic in the way it diagnoses a cold or pathogen. The saying goes, one illness, ten patterns, one pattern, ten diseases.

Benefits Black Ginger Tea

This tea is suitable for taking at the beginning signs of phlegm and cough, particularly clear or white phlegm. Overuse of antibiotics may make phlegm worse.

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs are a natural alternative form of medicine to help your body resolve phlegm and cough. Excessive antibiotic use can lead to health problems such as diarrhoea, eczema, poor immunity and creating bacterial superbugs.

Black tea cough ginger
Black tea with ginger is excellent for a phlegmy, damp cough

Here is a recipe for this tea for you if you would like to ease a phlegmy cough.

Black Ginger Tea Recipe

Serves 1

Place 1 black tea bag (or teaspoon of black tea) in 2 cups of filtered water in a pot on the stove. Add grated ginger (2x4cm piece) and bring to the boil slowly. Simmer for five mins.

Strain some of the tea into your favourite tea cup and enjoy, best drunk while relatively hot so the ginger can enter the body quickly.

When To Drink It

It’s best to enjoy black tea in the morning as if consumed too late at night it can affect sleep, tea is not recommended in the first triemester of pregnancy either. For kids omit the black tea, add a slice of lemon and a little organic honey (also suitable for pregnancy). Always consult your practitioner if unsure.


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