Natural Help for Asthma

Asthma is a respiratory disorder that is characterized by wheezing, constriction and inflammation of the lungs.  Asthma is a chronic disorder that often responds to an allergy, cold air, exercise or illness.  Sufferers find they have attacked the breathlessness which are accompanied by wheezing, coughing and tightness in the chest.

Treatment for asthma often includes using inhalers and determining your primary triggers so that the asthmatic can effectively reduce the number of attacks or inflammation in their lungs by removing the triggers from their lives.  This means that this is their trigger is DOS, or dust mites, they effectively remove as much dust from their home as possible.  For many children who are severe asthmatics families find that removing carpeting from their home can significantly reduce the number of attacks their children suffer.

While removing their triggers is the start of a natural remedy for asthma many parents and adults want to decrease the amount and number of medications they take on a daily basis by turning to other natural remedies to decrease the inflammation and constriction in their lungs.  Asthma is a long-term inflammatory disease that may be triggered from the individual’s own immune system and their inability to handle toxins from the environment, also called allergens.

The number of people affected has been rising slowly over the last 20 years.  The American Lung Association believe that environmental pollution may be one cause since exposure to a greater variety of chemicals has been increasing over the past 20 years.  People who use more natural approaches hope that by helping their body to decrease the inflammatory response in the lungs they will also decrease their asthmatic symptoms.

One of the primary causes of inflammation in our diets is believed to be arachidonic acid.  This acid is found in certain foods such as shellfish, meat and eggs go.  By eating lots of these foods it is hoped that individuals will help to decrease their information.

In one German study an examination of 524 children found that asthma was more prevalent than those who had high levels of arachidonic acid.  Another strategy is to increase beneficial fats such as EPA and GLA.  These can be found in omega-3 fatty acid supplements found in health food stores.

Believe it or not, we really are what we eat.  In a study of 68,000 women those who had a higher intake of tomatoes, carrots and green leafy vegetables had a lower incidence of asthma.  Researchers have also found that an apple a day just may keep the doctor away.  High consumption of apples can also help protect against asthma and those children who have a daily intake of fruits and vegetables will also have a decreased risk of asthma.

Researchers from the University of Dundee, Scotland have evaluated the effects of butterbur on people who have allergic asthma and also currently using inhalers.  They found that this perennial shrub that grows in Europe, Asia and North America added to the anti-inflammatory effects.  Another study in 80 individuals for four months found that 40% were able to reduce their medications by the end of the study.

Side effects of butterbur are indigestion, headache, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea or constipationPregnant or nursing women, children or those with kidney or liver disease shouldn’t use butterbur.  Just like chemicals designed in the lab there are side effects for natural remedies.  Individuals should always do their homework before adding a chemical to their bodies.

Other natural remedies which are safe and has been confirmed through research are the negative responses that an individual will feel due to emotional stress.  While stress will not cause asthma, nor is asthma “all in the head”, stress will trigger an attack and help to make an attack worse.  Natural relaxation remedies such as deep abdominal breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery and biofeedback can help an individual learn how to decrease their stress response and therefore decrease the symptoms of asthma.

Some individuals who have an asthmatic response to do so because of a link to an allergy or irritants.  These allergic responses are often linked to free radicals in the environment which can be negated in the body through intake of antioxidants.  This is a perfect example of how improving your dietary intake of antioxidant materials, such as tomatoes, will help the body to fight against free radicals and therefore decrease the inflammatory response in the lungs.

The one last natural remedy that has been found to work for individuals who suffer from asthma is weight loss.  There have been a number of studies that link obesity to inflammation and the symptoms of asthma.

Natural remedies for asthma don’t necessarily include ingesting herbs, drinking teas or engaging in massage techniques.  You can decrease your symptoms with techniques that are as simple as changing your diet, improving your rest, decreasing your stress and learning breathing techniques.

We Recommend:

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Originally posted 2009-02-04 10:30:00.

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