If you are a fan of pineapple juice, maybe you already know about its many heavy-duty benefits like treating arthritis, boosting immunity, and fighting cancer. But would you ever pick up a glass of pineapple juice for cough relief? Some reports suggest that pineapple juice could be as much as five times more effective than cough syrups that doctors have been prescribing for years. Even if that is an exaggeration, we see no reason to doubt the power of the fruit. You should drink pineapple juice for cough relief if your cough is caused by an allergy or asthma. Pineapples contain an anti-inflammatory mixture of enzymes called bromelain which eases cough caused by inflammation of the airways. It is also known to dilute mucus and make it easier to expel it. Besides, it brings none of the drowsiness cough syrups are infamous for. Here’s looking at it in detail.
1. It Reduces Inflammation Due To Allergies
As many studies have noted, bromelain has potent anti-inflammatory benefits for your body. This is what has made the fruit so popular as a folk remedy for generations of people in South and Central America.1
Coughs are not uncommon when you have allergic airways diseases (AAD) as the body tries to purge itself of the excess mucus buildup. Anti-inflammatory therapy is one of the many treatments suggested to combat AAD.2
While steroids are typically used, you may give your body a nudge in the right direction by supplementing this medication with an anti-inflammatory diet that includes pineapple or its juice.3
2. It Combats Asthma And Allergy-Linked Respiratory Problems
By extension of the fact that bromelain can help with AAD, it is also suggested that it can work as a supplemental therapy to provide relief from allergic asthma. The triggers for your asthma could be environmental or dietary, or may have genetic or infectious roots.
One study explored the effect of using pineapple juice to treat bronchial asthma. Test subjects consumed 100 ml of pineapple mixed with an equal amount of water twice a day for a duration of 90 days.
The results of the lung function test called peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) were promising, leading the research team to conclude that pineapple juice could bring significant improvements to those with bronchial asthma.4
3. It Dilutes Mucus To Ease Coughs And Wheezing
If you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or bronchial asthma, an acute attack can cause wheezing and coughing when your bronchioles are blocked with excess mucus.
Research has hinted at the mucolytic or mucus-dissolving benefits of pineapple juice. It can help enhance mucolysis and the expelling of mucus (also called expectoration). It also causes stringy mucus typical of COPD and bronchial asthma to be diluted, making it easier for you to expel it.5
4. It Can Clear Out Sinus Problem Or Hay Fever
If you suffer from a stuffy nose and cough due to hay fever or sinus problems, bromelain could come to your rescue. Its action as an anti-inflammatory, a decongestant, and a natural antihistamine (the kind of drugs used to treat an allergy) helps provide you relief.6
Pineapple Juice Vs Cough Syrup
Can pineapple juice replace cough syrup? The answer to this depends on what kind of cough you have. If it is an allergic condition or a side effect of asthma, pineapple juice may be useful as an additional therapeutic treatment. Unfortunately, the amount of bromelain in a glass of pineapple juice too little to function as a medicine. So you will have to stick with the prescription from your doctor for now.7
If you are on antibiotics, you can supplement your cough treatment with pineapple juice as bromelain enhances the effect of antibiotics. But this also means you should consult your doctor first.
If you have a bad infection, you may need proper medication to help your body fight it off. While pineapple juice may only have a limited use in treating infections, it could help alleviate the inflammation or mucus build-up of allergic asthma or AAD.
However, if you have been drinking fresh pineapple juice regularly, you already have a lower risk of catching the common cold and cough. An 8 oz glass of the fresh juice promises 119 mg vitamin C, which is more than an average adult needs.8 But vitamin C is not the only immunity booster in pineapple juice. It has carotenoids which are plant antioxidants and manganese which helps make up superoxide dismutase, a natural antioxidant in your body.
|↑1, ↑6, ↑7||Bromelain. University of Maryland Medical Center.|
|↑2||White, Kevin M., Michael S. Tankersley, and Pramod S. Kelkar. “Mechanisms of Cough in Asthma and Allergic Airway Disease.” In Allergy Frontiers: Clinical Manifestations, pp. 187-201. Springer Japan, 2009.|
|↑3||Carlsen, Kai-Håkon. “Therapeutic strategies for allergic airways diseases.” Paediatric respiratory reviews 5, no. 1 (2004): 45-51.|
|↑4, ↑5||Sharma,Sujata Pandit, and Brajbhushan.“A Study on Nutritional Efficacy of Pineapple Juice in the Treatment of Bronchial Asthma.”International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, Volume 5, Issue 1, January 2015.|
|↑8||Basic Report: 09266, Pineapple, raw, all varieties. USDA.|