Natural Asthma Remedies
There are numerous natural asthma remedies, such as the use of vitamins, minerals, nutritional supplements, herbs, and homeopathy.
Asthma is a serious chronic respiratory disease that occurs when the airways in the lungs (bronchial tubes) become inflamed and constricted. People suffering from asthma
usually have a combination of problems in the lungs: tightening of muscles of the bronchial walls, swelling of the mucus linings, and extra mucus production blocking
There are two major components of asthma. One is noisy and easily noticeable - the wheezing, coughing, choking, shortness-of-breath feeling. That's the part most people call
an asthma attack. The second part of asthma is quiet and not always noticed until the damage has become so extensive that an asthma attack begins. It is called
inflammation. People with asthma have inflammation in their lungs. The membranes that are lining the inner walls of the air passages become swollen and leaky.
In addition, there is excess mucus production within the inner walls.
An asthma attack occurs when a susceptible person is exposed to some kind of trigger, such as environmental allergens (e.g. animal dander, mold spores and pollen),
environmental irritants (e.g. air pollution, cold air and cigarette smoke), heavy exertion, or even anxiety.
In North America, the number of people suffering from asthma has been increasing. Many doctors believe that it is due to air pollution as well as a diet high in
fats, meat and additives, all of which can cause inflammation and excess mucus production.
What Causes Asthma?
It is still unclear as to what exactly causes asthma, and why some people have asthma attacks while others do not. However, it is believed that asthma is
probably caused by a combination of environmental and genetic factors. Common triggers that bring on an asthma attack include:
- Allergies, either food (such as peanuts, shellfish) or environmental (such as pollens, animal dander, mold, dust mites)
- Pollution and irritants (such as smoke)
- Respiratory infections (such as colds, flu)
- Heavy physical exertion (exercise-induced asthma)
- Hormonal imbalance (e.g. menstrual cycle in some women)
- Emotional stress
- Certain medications (such as aspirin and other NSAIDs - nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)
Symptoms of Asthma
Symptoms of asthma vary from person to person. Some people may have mild symptoms such as infrequent wheezing, with occasional asthma attacks, while some other people
may have asthma symptoms such as coughing and wheezing all the time or have symptoms primarily at night or only during exercise.
Common signs and symptoms of asthma include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Pain or tightness in the chest
- Difficulty sleeping due to coughing and blocked airways
- Increased heart rate
Natural Asthma Remedies
Asthma cannot be cured but the symptoms can be controlled. Since it is a potentially life-threatening disease, if you suffer from asthma, you should be under the care
of a doctor who can monitor your conditions.
Conventional treatments for asthma include finding out and avoiding the triggers of asthma, and using a combination of long-term control medications and quick-relief
medications, called "rescue medications", which are taken with a hand-held inhaler.
However, many people have also found relief using natural asthma remedies such as nutritional supplements, herbs, homeopathy, and aromatherapy. If you
choose to use natural remedies as supplemental treatments for your asthma, be sure to check with your doctor and enlist the help and advice of a good holistic practitioner.
For your reference, below are some natural asthma remedies found from various reliable resources.
Natural Asthma Remedies - Vitamins and Minerals
Some vitamins and minerals have been found to be effective natural asthma remedies:
- Magnesium: Magnesium helps to reduce inflammation by stabilizing immune cells (mast cells and T lymphocytes) so that they are less likely
to break down and dump their irritating contents in the lungs. It also improves lung function by helping the body to eliminate certain lung-irritating chemicals.
Through all these functions, magnesium helps to relieve congestion, constriction and hypersensitivity in people with asthma.
Magnesium is also sometimes given intravenously to treat serious asthma attacks since large doses of magnesium can relax the muscles around blood vessels and airways.
If you have asthma and would like to take magnesium supplements (daily dosage - 400 mg), be sure to check with your doctor first if you have heart or kidney problems.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C protects the lungs in various ways. For example, it helps to shield the lungs from harmful chemicals in smoke or polluted
air. It can also neutralize the harmful chemicals produced by the body as a result of the inflammation that occurs with asthma. In addition, vitamin C acts as a
natural antihistamine. Vitamin C is therefore frequently used to relieve asthma symptoms such as wheezing.
- B Vitamins: Some B vitamins, especially B6 and B3 (niacin), have also been reported to be helpful for asthma patients. B6 has been found
to be able to reduce the frequency, duration and severity of asthma attacks. Recommended daily dosage is 50 mg.
Niacin has been shown to reduce the incidence of wheezing, perhaps because this vitamin prevents the release of histamine. Recommended daily dosage is 100 mg.
Natural Asthma Remedies - Nutritional Supplements
The following nutritional supplements can also be used as components of natural asthma remedies:
- Essential Fatty Acids: EFA formulations that contain flaxseed oil, fish oil, or a mixture of omega-3, 6, and 9 fatty acids are helpful
for preventing asthma.
- Antioxidants: Antioxidants can reduce inflammation of the airways thereby relieving some asthma symptoms. One powerful antioxidant
is Quercetin. It is also a natural antihistamine, and anti-inflammatory. Recommended dosage is 1000 mg three times a day.
Another effective antioxidant for asthma sufferers is N-Acetyl Cysteine. It can liquefy mucus in the bronchial tubes and the sinuses, thereby improving
conditions such as asthma, and bronchitis. Recommended daily dosage is 1000 to 1500 mg a day.
Herbal Remedies for Asthma
Homeopathic Remedies for Asthma
Balch and Stengler, Prescription for Natural Cures, (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2004).
Duke, J.A. The Green Pharmacy Herbal Handbook. (St. Martin's Paperbacks, 2002).
Editors of Prevention Health Books, Prevention's Healing with Vitamins, (Rodale Books, 1998).
TOP of Natural Asthma Remedies
|Top 10 Most Visited Pages|