Eucalyptus Tea: 6 Health Benefits, How to Make & Side Effects

Eucalyptus tea prepared with the medicinal plant Eucalyptus globulus is a drink that is rich in tannins, aldehydes and volatile oils, like cineol and terpineol. These are substances with antiseptic, decongestant, antispasmodic and antimicrobial action, making this tea beneficial for the treatment of colds, flus and sinusitis. 

Furthermore, eucalyptus tea contains antioxidant properties that improve immune system action and help to prevent and fight off respiratory infections.  

This tea is prepared with eucalyptus leaves, which can easily be purchased in herbal stores, natural health products or pharmacies. Eucalyptus tea should not be used to substitute medical treatments prescribed by your doctor, but can be consumed to complement treatments and obtain several health benefits.  

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Health benefits

Eucalyptus tea can offer many health benefits, including: 

1. Combating a wet cough

Eucalyptus tea contains substances, like flavonoids, triterpenes, tannins and phenolic acids that are derivatives of cinnamic acid and phloroglucinol. These help to fight respiratory infections and thin our bronchial secretions. They help to eliminate phlegm and help to treat wet coughs from colds, flu, sinusitis, adenitis, tonsillitis, asthma or bronchitis. 

Check out other home remedies for a cough that you can prepare at home.

2. Relieving inflammation

 Eucalyptus leaves contain volatile oils, like cineol and terpineol, which contain anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. They can help to treat respiratory infections, relieve general malaise and reduce respiratory tract swelling, making this tea a great option for treating colds and flus. 

3. Improving breathing

Eucalyptus tea contains cineol, a substance that helps to treat respiratory infections like colds, flu and sinusitis. It can also help to relieve congestion in the airways, and can therefore be used to improve breathing, unobstruct airways and open up a stuffy nose. 

4. Stimulating immunity

The volatile oils in eucalyptus oil help to stimulate immunity and improve defense cell functioning, particularly white blood cells like monocytes and macrophages. These oils help to increase the body's capacity to combat infections. 

Eucalyptus tea can also help to reduce the intensity of respiratory infection symptoms. Learn about other immune system boosters that you can consume when treating an infection. 

5. Combating infections

The volatile oils in eucalyptus tea contain antimicrobial action against bacterial like Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus agalactiae. Thee are responsible for causing illnesses like gastroenteritis and UTIs. To use eucalyptus tea to treat these condition, you should consult a registered dietitian or medicinal plant specialist. 

6. Managing foul breath

Eucalyptus tea contains antibacterial and antiseptic action, due to the eucalyptol and macrocarpal C in its composition. These substances help to eliminate bacteria in the mouth that may be contributing to foul breath or gingivitis. It is a great option that can be used as a mouth gargle.

How to make eucalyptus tea

Eucalyptus tea is often used to relieve symptoms of a cold or flu. It can also help to eliminate lung secretions that can start to build up with bronchitis. 


  • 1 tablespoon of eucalyptus leaves, chopped 
  • 150 mL of water 

How to prepare:

Boil the water in a pot, then remove from heat. Then add the eucalyptus leaves, cover and steep for 5 minutes. Then strain and drink 1 cup of tea, 2 to 3 times per day.

This tea can also be inhaled or used a mouth wash, with both methods prepared with fresh eucalyptus leaves. 

Possible side effects

The most common side effects from eucalyptus tea include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, dizziness, shortness of breath, tachycardia, drowsiness or hyperactivity. These types of effects are common in people with a hypersensitivity to eucalyptus, and therefore should be avoided. 

Eucalyptus tea can also increase liver action, which can reduce the effect of some medications. Therefore, people who take daily medications should speak to their doctor before consuming eucalyptus tea. 

Contraindications for use

Eucalyptus tea should not be used by anyone with an allergy to this plant, nor should it be used by pregnant women, or patients with gallbladder or liver disease. 

Eucalyptus inhalations should not be attempted by children under 12 years of age, as it can trigger allergies and shortness of air. Eucalyptus mixtures should not be applied to the skin in babies, especially the nose, as it can also cause irritation.