Pineapple Juice For Cough: Does It Work?

In this article, we will take a close look at the potential benefits and risks of using pineapple juice as a home remedy for cough. We will discuss the role of bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapples, and the importance of consulting a healthcare provider before starting any new treatment regimen.
Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub Gwiazdecki

Fifth year medical student at the Medical Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava.



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Is Pineapple Juice Good For Cough?

There is little medical evidence of its therapeutic effects. However, pineapple juice is often hailed as a remedy for coughs.

There are many minerals and vitamins in pineapple juice. Especially copper, magnesium, and vitamin C are beneficial for the immune system [1]. These substances can be helpful in coughs caused by airway infections.

Also, pineapple juice contains bromelain. This is an enzyme with anti-inflammatory properties. It can help in healing and supposedly works as a mucolytic [1]. The presence of this enzyme in pineapple juice makes it a great supportive supplement for coughing.

However, when experiencing a cough, the most important step is a correct diagnosis and appropriate treatment. To be sure of the origin and manage the cough effectively, you should consult a doctor.

You have to remember that pineapple juice can work well as a supportive treatment. Yet, it is not a medication, and it is not treating the underlying cause of your cough.

How Much of the Pineapple Juice Should I Drink to Make the Cough Go Away?

Pineapple juice has many substances that work well as supportive treatments. Its anti-inflammatory and immune system-supporting ingredients can speed up the therapy.

However, there are no studies that specifically define the amount of pineapple juice needed to effectively treat the cough.

There are some non-professional recommendations for drinking pineapple juice for coughing. They include special mixtures of salt and ginger with pineapple juice. Such smoothies are recommended three times daily, and each portion should be one-quarter of a cup [1].

Can Pineapple Juice Help With Coughing in Pneumonia?

In pneumonia, it is better to avoid sugar-containing substances like pineapple juice.

Pineapple juice can be used only as a supportive treatment for pneumonia. It can support the immune system and relieve some of the symptoms. However, it can also worsen the course of the disease.

On the one hand, pineapple juice has a lot of elements needed to support the immune system in the fight against the pathogen. Also, it can help with the cough.

On the other hand, pineapple juice contains sugar. High sugar consumption is not recommended during an infection.

Especially during bacterial infection, the sugar interferes with the immunological response [2]. Additionally, it can promote bacterial virulence [3]. All this can prolong the therapy for pneumonia.

Therefore, to avoid unnecessary risks, it is better not to drink pineapple juice for coughing or pneumonia.

To substitute for the positive effect, pineapple can have supplements, and medication can be used.

To help with the cough, cough drops or antitussive drugs like codeine [4] or dextromethorphan [5] can be used.

For supportive treatment, copper and vitamin C can be used in pure form.

Even when you decide to use pineapple juice for coughing in pneumonia, you have to remember that it is only a supportive treatment. Pineapple juice is not a medication and will not help with pneumonia. To effectively treat pneumonia and cough, you should contact a doctor.

Risks of Pineapple Juice for Cough?

Even though pineapple juice is proven to have many health benefits, there are risks associated with its consumption. You should be cautious when drinking pineapple juice for the first time.

In some cases, pineapple juice can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea [1].

In diabetic patients, the consumption of pineapple juice can lead to high glucose levels [1]. If you are diabetic, you should watch your glucose levels after consumption. Especially, long-term high blood glucose can lead to complications.

Also, pineapple juice has a risk of causing drug interactions. It can modify the metabolic pathways of some drugs [6, 7]. It can affect you, particularly when you regularly drink large amounts of pineapple juice.

One of the most dangerous pathways pineapple juice influences is liver drug metabolism. The juice is an inhibitor of the cytochrome P450 enzyme in the liver [7]. When this enzyme is blocked, the drugs are not inactivated. This can lead to interactions between the medications [6, 7].

Furthermore, some people have an allergy to pineapple. You should be aware that when you drink pineapple juice for the first time, you can get an allergic reaction [1].

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Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub is in his fifth year as a medical student at Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia. He has special interested in cardiology and in patient-centered medicine. His love for heart health isn't just book-smarts; he wants to know how it works, what it means for our feelings, and how key it is for health and happiness. Jakub thinks real good health care comes from always putting the patient at the centre, treating each person as a whole.