Did you know that your diet could affect your lung health? It is true. Certain food groups cannot only trigger asthma attacks but can also worsen colds and coughs too. This week we look at the best diet options to improve lung health by understanding which types of food are good for you and your lungs.
They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and that is especially true in the case of asthmatics. Studies show that eating two to five apples can greatly improve your health and lowers the risk of an asthma attack. It is said this is due to flavanoids (a nutrient compound) such as khelin, which helps to open up airways.
Rock melon (also known as cantaloupe) is a great source of vitamin C, which is an effective antioxidant. A study has stated that those who receive a high intake of vitamin C are at lower risk of asthma attacks. Rock melons are an excellent source of vitamin c and vitamin a. You can also find vitamin c in any citric fruit such orange, grapefruit, kiwi fruit, or vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and tomatoes.
An excellent source for beta-carotene that is another antioxidant that converts to Vitamin A. It can help with reducing the chances of exercise triggered asthma attacks. In addition, vitamin A is also good overall for your immune system, eyesight, as well as for helping heart disease, Alzheimer’s and cancer. You can also find vitamin A in other vibrantly hued fruits and vegetables such as green pepper, sweet potatoes, and apricots.
Whilst coffee often gets a bad rep for various reasons, with concern to asthma caffeine found in coffee can improve airway function, as it is a bronchodilator, which improves airflow.
As it contains anti-inflammatory properties, garlic has been used in various remedies for centuries as it also contains a potent antioxidant called Allicin, which can help fight infections.
Flax seeds come from Flax (or linseed) which is grown in cooler climates. Flax seeds in question are high in omega-3 fatty acids and magnesium. Preliminary studies suggest that whilst the omega-3 has a positive effect on asthmatics, the magnesium helps relax the bronchi muscles and keep the airways and air sac open.
Milk can be both good and bad for you if you have respiratory issues. If you have asthma or are down with a cold or flu, it can worsen symptoms. However, it also contains Vitamin D that can help ease certain symptoms too. Therefore, you need to be wary of milk intake in the event it worsens your symptoms or find an alternative source of vitamin D such as soya, mushroom, and fish.
Whilst the above foods are ideal for improving lung health to lower your risk of asthma, you should also avoid certain food items that work negatively. This includes the likes of eggs, shellfish, peanuts and more. Essentially, you should be wary of any food item than can cause allergies and result in respiratory problems.