What is Asthma?
With asthma, the airways in your lungs are often swollen or inflamed. This makes them extra sensitive to things that you are exposed to in the environment every day, or asthma “triggers.” A trigger could be a cold or the weather, or things in the environment, such as dust, chemicals, smoke and pet dander.
When you breathe in a trigger, the insides of your airways swell even more. This narrows the space for the air to move in and out of the lungs. The muscles that wrap around your airways also can tighten, making breathing even harder. When that happens, it’s called an asthma flare-up, asthma episode or asthma “attack.”
Asthma can start at any age. Sometimes, people have asthma when they are very young and as their lungs develop, the symptoms go away, but it’s possible that it will come back later in life. Sometimes people get asthma for the first time when they are older.
Ayurveda View of Asthma
Ayurvedic Herbs: Numerous ayurvedic medicine for dissolving gallstones known as cholagogues and choleretics have been found useful in preventing gallstones in traditional ayurvedic medicine. Cholagogues are herbs that stimulate the gallbladder to contract, while choleretics stimulate the liver to secrete more bile. Both these actions could help reduce the risk of developing gallstones
What is the cause of Asthma?
Asthma is a long-term disease of the lungs. It causes your airways to get inflamed and narrow, and it makes it hard to breathe. Severe asthma can cause trouble talking or being active. You might hear your doctor call it a chronic respiratory disease. Some people refer to asthma as “bronchial asthma.”
Asthma is a serious disease that affects about 25 million Americans and causes nearly 1.6 million emergency room visits every year. With treatment, you can live well. Without it, you might have to go to the ER often or stay at the hospital, which can affect your daily life.
Home Remedies for Asthma
Many things get credit for being natural asthma remedies. But because studies on complementary and alternative treatments for asthma have been limited, it’s not clear how safe and effective all of them are.
These natural remedies have been studied:
Acupuncture. This traditional Chinese treatment involves inserting thin needles into specific points on the body. While some people with asthma say acupuncture eases their symptoms, there’s little proof that it works as an asthma treatment.
Biofeedback. Learning to control your heart rate may help you manage your asthma, but more studies are needed to confirm a benefit.
Herbs and natural dietary supplements. Many people use herbs, plants, and supplements, especially Chinese herbs, to treat asthma. It’s not clear how well many of them work. More research is needed on supplements like magnesium and fish oil (omega-3 fatty acids). But vitamins C, D, and E may help lower your risk of symptoms.
Asthma diet. If you have a food allergy, avoiding trigger foods may also help with some asthma symptoms.
Plant-based diet. Several studies have found benefits for people with asthma who follow the Mediterranan diet.It involves lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats like olive oil. You eat more fatty fish and poultry than red meat. Experts think this diet helps with asthma symptoms because it helps fight inflamation in your body. A similar eating plan called DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) may also improve asthma control.
Weight loss. Most people who have extra pounds carry them in the middle of their body. This can make it harder for your lungs to work. Losing weight can improve lung volume and lower your chances of conditions that make asthma worse, like diabetes or high blood pressure. It may also make exercise easier, which could improve your asthma symptoms.
Caffeine. Caffeine is a mild bronchodilator, which means it helps open your airways. Studies have found that it may improve airway function in people who have asthma.
Yoga. Stress may trigger asthma symptoms. Breathing exercises used in yoga have been found to help some people with asthma control breathing and relieve strss, a common asthma trigger.
Buteyko breathing. This technique focuses on slow breathing and short periods when you hold your breath. It doesn’t treat asthma, but it may help improve the pattern of your breathing.
Papworth method. This relaxation and breathing system teaches you to breathe from your diaphragm so your lungs fill with as much air as possible.
Are There Natural Remedies for Asthma Attacks?
The typical treatment for an asthma attack is a quick-acting (rescue) inhaler with medication. Sit upright and take slow, steady breaths. Try to stay calm. Follow the asthma acion plan that you’ve set up with your doctor. If your breathing doesn’t get better or if you’re so short of breath that you can’t talk, get medical help right away.
Some breathing exercises can help with symptoms of an asthma attack.
- Pursed-lip breathing. This slows your breathing and helps hold your airways open longer so your lungs work better. With your mouth closed, breathe in slowly through your nose. Then breathe out through your mouth, with your lips pursed like you’re whistling, for twice as long.
- Belly breathing. This technique uses the same steps as pursed-lip breathing. But as you breathe in, focus on the movement of your belly. Picture it filling with air like a balloon. It may help to keep your hands on your belly so you can concentrate on the air going in and out.
Natural Asthma Remedy Risks
As you consider the different types of natural asthma remedies, it’s very important to carefully balance your desire to breathe easier with the possible dangers of the treatments, which may be unknown. Keep these things in mind:
- Never use any dietary supplement before checking with your doctor.
- Some natural herbal products, such as bee pollen, may trigger an asthma attack if you’re allergic to the specific plant.
- Never stop using your asthma drugs without your doctor’s knowledge. If you don’t follow your treatment plan, the results can be very serious and even deadly.
If you’re not sure about the claims on a natural dietary supplement product label, call your doctor before taking it. They can check the product to let you know if it has any health benefits.