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Top Ten Dietary Tips to Combat Asthma

Submitted by Nick on April 14, 2011

Asthma is a serious respiratory condition, where the lungs get swollen and inflamed, causing breathing problems, due to the tightening of one‘s bronchial tubes. During an asthmatic attack, the acts of inhaling and exhaling become a painful effort. Various factors like allergies, stress, reactions to food, etc, can trigger an attack. Therefore, it is advisable to alter your diet for asthma control, to make sure that you avoid foods that trigger asthma and can bring on an attack or worsen the condition. Instead, make sure you include the following foods to prevent asthma, to help your body cope with this condition:
  • Fruits: Most citrus fruits like oranges as well as strawberries, peaches, grapefruit and papaya are very high in Vitamin C, which helps fight respiratory diseases.

    Fruits with rich coloring have a high concentration of Vitamin C.
  • Vegetables: Most vegetables, especially the green, leafy ones are full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, which are very good for your respiratory system. Vegetables like spinach, broccoli, kale and Brussels sprouts are very healthy.
  • Nuts & seeds: Nuts like Brazil nuts contain Selenium, which is known to reduce inflammation of the lungs. Vitamins C & E have a stronger effect, if combined with Selenium.

    Almonds are high in vitamin E. Walnuts are also good for the body, as they contain Alpha Linolenic Acid (ALA), which gets converted to eicosapentaenoic acid, usually found in fish. Seeds like hemp seeds and flaxseeds are also high in ALA.

  • Seafood: Fish like salmon and mackerels contain omega 3 fatty acids, which help in reducing inflammation in the lungs. They also reduce the damage caused to the tissues of the lungs, because of recurring asthma attacks.
  • Lean meats: Meats like chicken and turkey contain selenium and are good sources of Vitamin B6.

    Therefore, they are good for controlling asthma. However, both the meats contain tryptophan, which can aggravate respiratory problems, if consumed in excess.
  • Peppers: Red Peppers contain Vitamin C, which can help treat asthma attacks caused by exercises. They are also high in Vitamin A, which can prevent asthma attacks.
  • Onions: Onions have anti-asthmatic and anti-inflammatory properties. They are good for reducing bronchial obstructions & relaxing bronchial passageways, as they contain prostaglandins. Onions contain many other minerals that are good for maintaining immunity. However, if consumed in the raw or pickled states, onions can bring on an attack in sensitive people.
  • Chickpeas: Chickpeas are high in Vitamin B6, which help in reducing wheezing problems, as well as asthma attacks
  • Cereals: Whole grain cereals contain some amounts of Vitamin E. Some cereals like brown rice and oats are good, as they contain fiber as well as Vitamin B.
  • Herbs: Natural herbs can be used to flavor and add taste to the food, in place of salt, as foods that are high in salt exacerbate asthma problems. Herbs like oregano and parsley are good for health.
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