Asthma is a serious respiratory condition that impacts roughly 13 percent of the American population.1 Classic symptoms include chest tightness, wheezing, and shortness of breath.
While scientists have yet to find a cure for this disease, there are some effective treatments available. To help, here are some home remedies to help asthma sufferers.
Consume Healthy Fats
The foods you eat can have a big impact on your ability to minimize asthma symptoms. While foods high in salt are especially bad for asthma, healthy fats improve lung functioning.
An avocado is a great option. It contains oleic acid, which acts as an anti-inflammatory. Loaded with omega-3, chia seeds are just as effective. Some of the other great choices include:
- Chia seeds;
- Dark chocolate;
- Eggs, and;
- Fatty fish.2
Make Fig Water a Part of Your Diet
Figs are great for asthmatics. Unlike some other dried fruits, they won’t trigger flair-ups. In fact, this fruit helps to clear mucus buildup from the lungs and nasal passages, thus helping you to breathe easier.
It’s a good idea to soak a few figs overnight in water. When you wake up in the morning, drink the fig-infused water on an empty stomach.
Don’t be surprised if you start to cough up phlegm.
Try Breathing Retraining
In order to overcome asthma symptoms, you must learn to breathe deeply.
Studies show a technique called breathing retraining can be extremely beneficial. It teaches you how to relax your lungs. When performing breathing retraining, asthma sufferers should focus on inhaling out of their nose as opposed to their mouth. This will help warm the air flowing through the respiratory tract.
Additionally, maintaining good posture is important. In fact, sitting up straight helps reduce shortness of breath.3
Drink Hot Coffee and Tea
Coffee and tea can help your lungs to work more efficiently. The caffeine works similar to a doctor-prescribed inhaler medication. It functions to open clogged airways for up to four hours. While these beverages shouldn’t take the place of your regular asthma treatments, they are great substitutes.
However, avoid drinking more than three cups a day. Too much caffeine can raise your blood pressure and cause feelings of anxiety.
Get Plenty of Vitamin C
If you aren’t getting an abundance of vitamin C, you are far more likely to struggle with asthma. Make it a priority to consume plenty of vitamin C on a daily basis. It seems the antioxidants help prevent the airways from becoming restricted.
While vitamin C supplements are readily available at your local supermarket, fruits are a better choice. Some great picks include:
- Papaya, and;
Veggies, like broccoli and bell peppers, are also rich in vitamin C.4
Use a Humidifier
Breathing in dry air can worsen asthma symptoms. Dry airways are more prone to become swollen and irritated. On the other hand, moisture helps the lungs to perform more freely.
A humidifier is a great investment for any person dealing with asthma. While whole-home humidifiers are available, a small unit for your bedroom can vaporize the air.
Before you retire at night, turn on the unit to enjoy a more peaceful sleep. The extra moisture should loosen congestion and make wheezing less severe.
Home Air Purifier
Allergens can cause you to experience an asthma attack. Heavy pollen and dust are especially problematic. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, indoor air can be up to five times dirtier than outdoor air.5
While modern heating and cooling units are designed to filtrate some irritants, an air purifier will further reduce the number of allergens inside your home. To maximize the performance of an air purifier, be sure the change its filter at the recommended time.
Develop a Workout Plan
Because of their condition, some asthmatics refrain from exercising. However, this is not a good approach to the long-term treatment of asthma.
People who have their symptoms under control have no trouble working out. In fact, there have been several professional athletes with asthma who have competed at an elite level.6
The health benefits of regular exercise include improved lung functioning and a lower risk of upper respiratory infections. While no activity is completely off-limits for asthma patients, swimming and yoga are highly recommended.
Try to Keep a Clean House
An unclean home is a health hazard for asthma sufferers.
Like dust mites, bed bugs are known to exacerbate asthma symptoms. Therefore, keeping these insects out of your home is a must. Regularly vacuuming the floors and washing your bedding in hot water will prove to be a big help.
Mold is another key asthma trigger. You’ll usually find mold in damp areas, including around windows and on plumbing fixtures.
Be Careful About Taking Painkillers
When suffering from backaches or the flu, many people reach for painkillers in their medicine cabinet. Unfortunately, these pills can cause issues for asthmatics.
If you’ve been diagnosed with asthma, try to avoid using aspirin. After taking a medication with aspirin on the ingredient list, it’s common for asthmatics to experiencing breathing complications.
As you can see, there are some great alternative ways to treat asthma. Fortunately, most of these at-home remedies don’t require you to invest a lot of money.
Take control of your asthma by always striving to learn more about the condition.