Feel like you've tried everything to improve your asthma? Try these 10 things and see
The tendency to develop asthma is genetic, but the disease itself is usually precipitated by environmental influences. The environment we live in and the stressors we are exposed to have changed a great deal in recent years, and this has caused more and more people to develop the condition.
Asthma sufferers develop hypersensitivity of the lungs which causes spasmodic constriction of the bronchi and production of excess mucus. This leads to a sense of constriction in the lungs with wheezing and night coughing.
New research has revealed that many people with asthma find it difficult to control their symptoms. More than half of all sufferers regularly experience problems during the day due to coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath, and more than a quarter suffer from sleep disturbance. More than 40% of children with asthma regularly have to take time off school and 20% of adults miss days at work due to the illness.New research has revealed that many people with asthma find it difficult to control their symptoms. More than half of all sufferers regularly experience problems during the day due to coughing, wheezing or shortness of breath, and more than a quarter suffer from sleep disturbance. More than 40% of children with asthma regularly have to take time off school and 20% of adults miss days at work due to the illness. However with the right treatment it is possible to effectively control the symptoms of asthma
1. Herbal MedicineMedical herbalists take a holistic approach to treatment and provide individually tailored prescriptions which combine a number of different herbs. For example, antispasmodic and bronchodilating herbs such as lobelia help to reduce constriction and wheezing. Anticatarrhal and expectorant herbs such as thornapple and liquorice deal with excess mucus production, while antimicrobial herbs such as thyme help to treat infections and reduce the need for antibiotics. Herbs such as Echinacea encourage a healthy immune response which reduces allergic reactions and helps to prevent infection. Antiallergy herbs such as nettle and ginkgo are also helpful. Coughing can be reduced with herbs such as elecampane and mullein, while anxiety can often be effectively treated with herbs such as valerian and chamomile. Consult with a medical Herbalist for best input here
2. Food AllergiesIf you suffer from asthma it is important to look at your diet and consider removing some of the most common trigger foods which commonly cause allergic reactions, such as wheat (gluten), some dairy products, corn, peanuts and some eggs. This process is made easier by consulting a person trained in nutrition. All processed foods and refined sugars should be avoided
3. Air qualityReduce exposure to airborne irritants such as mold, dust, animal hair, traffic fumes and cigarette smoke. Others are mentioned below
4. NutritionEnsure the diet includes plenty of oily fish and fresh fruit and vegetables and take a good quality Cod Liver Oil supplement. Drink plenty of water
5. DrugsAvoid medicines such as paracetamol and antibiotics unless absolutely necessary and prescribed by your doctor
6. Vitamin DOne study followed more than 1,000 children with asthma for four years, and found those with vitamin-D insufficiency at the outset were more likely to have an asthma attack that required a trip to the hospital. In another study , researchers have discovered that African American children with asthma in metropolitan Washington,DC, are significantly more likely to have low levels of vitamin D than healthy children.
7. Conjugated linoleic acidsConjugated linoleic acids (CLA) may improve the airway hyper-reactivity in asthmatics, according to the results of a new study(Clinical and Experimental Allergy 40(7): 1071-1078; July 2010). A dose of 4.5 grams of CLA each day produced significant reduction in airway hyperresponsiveness. It also had favorable effects on body weight. CLA is a fatty acid, which is found in ruminant meat and dairy products. Average intake of CLA has fallen over the years due to changes in the Western diet.
8. Lack of contact with Nature increases your risk of asthmaA lack of exposure to a "natural environment" could be resulting in more urban dwellers developing allergies and asthma, research has suggested
9. Avoid Swimming PoolsAccording to a study in the journal Pediatrics (Bernard, A. 2009 “Impact of chlorinated swimming pool attendance on the respiratory health of adolescents”) chlorinated pools irritate the airways of swimmers, exerting a strong additive effect on the development of asthma and respiratory allergies such as hay fever and allergic rhinitis
10. Air fresheners and Scented “ Yankie” CandelsNew research compiled by scientists from Emory University in Atlanta USA , suggests that various chemical additives in air fresheners can trigger allergies, asthma and other health problems. Many scented air freshener products contain harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like formaldehyde, petroleum distillates, benzene and limonene, which are known to trigger asthma and other respiratory symptoms, as well as eye irritation, bone damage and leukemia. They also contain various other toxic ingredients like benzyl alcohol, dichlorobenzene, naphthalene, phenol and pinene.