Asthma is an airway condition that has rapidly increased in prevalence over the last couple of decades. This may be due to the increase in pollution, toxins and triggers in our environment. However, with the increase in prevalence there is an increased motivation to find treatments to relieve and cure asthma. Presently asthma is incurable and treated by medications and pharmaceuticals that are required for the rest of the patient’s life. Conventional medicine although effective at reducing inflammation and temporarily dilating the airways, has a potential risk for side effects. Additionally, there is no long-term solution with bronchodilators and asthma inhalers. In the search to cure asthma, natural and alternative approaches are being broached to relieve and eliminate symptoms, frequency and progression of this disorder. Some of the alternative treatments that are showing benefits include breathing exercises, diet, exercise, homeopathy, vitamin and herbal supplementation, acupuncture, yoga, chiropractic, massage therapy, and biofeedback.
Diet – Much like the air we breathe, the environment we surround ourselves with and the company we keep, the food that we eat affects our asthma just as much. Food is our bodies natural fuel source for energy however not all foods are used the same way in the body. Some foods worsen asthma symptoms where as other foods help to alleviate asthma symptoms. Food allergies are one of the many triggers of asthma. It is important to determine which foods cause an allergic reaction so you can eliminate them from your diet. Once these foods are removed your asthma symptoms should be greatly diminished. Foods that worsen asthma include saturated fat, salty foods, additives, preservatives, and dairy products. Saturated fats are found in red meats, shellfish, egg yolks and butter. When consumed these foods cause an inflammation response from the bodies immune system which can worsen and even cause an as asthma attack. Increased sodium levels and diets high in slat also cause inflammation within the body. Artificial sweeteners, food preservatives, and food coloring such as aspartame, sulfites, benzoates and yellow dye #5 can cause increased asthma symptoms. Dairy products increase mucus production, which worsens asthma. Eliminating milk, cheese and other cultured milk products from your diet can help to minimize your asthma symptoms. It will be necessary to supplement your diet with other sources of calcium and vitamin d.