asthma

  1. Vitamin D reduces severe asthma attacks

    Get ready to breathe a sigh of relief

    Bring on the tissues!

    Cold and flu season has arrived -- and, along with it, a chorus of drippy noses, raw throats, and gunky lungs.

    Let's face it: NO ONE wants to spend a week buried in a pile of wet Kleenex. But if you've already got asthma, these seasonal viruses aren't just uncomfortable... they could actually be a matter of life or DEATH!

    That's because upper respiratory infections can inflame the delicate airways in your nose and lungs, which can set off a severe asthma attack. And if you don't get treatment for it STAT, you could wind up choking down your last breath.

    But according to the latest research, there's a natural way to snuff out asthma attacks before they start -- because supplementing with vitamin D (a.k.a. the "sunshine" vitamin) can reduce the risk of having an attack that requires medical attention.

    In the meta-analysis out of the UK, researchers analyzed the data from seven clinical trials involving nearly 1,000 patients with mild to moderate asthma. All of the studies selected met the "gold standard" of research -- meaning they were randomized, double-blind studies.

    The researchers found that, compared to those who took placebos, participants who took vitamin D reduced their risk of having a moderate asthma attack -- one requiring treatment with steroid tablets or injections -- by 30 percent.

    And those who'd had low vitamin D levels to begin with benefitted even MORE from supplementation with this hero vitamin, reducing their risk of a moderate asthma attack by 55 percent.

    What's more, when it came to more severe attacks, the protective effects of vitamin D were also impressive, cutting the risk of attacks requiring a visit to the ER or hospitalization in HALF.

    The theory is that vitamin D reduces harmful inflammation in your airways AND boosts your immune system, so you're less likely to catch an upper respiratory infection in the first place.

    Now, vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin, because your body naturally produces it when the sun's UV rays hit your skin.

    But as the cloudier skies and cooler temperatures of fall and winter drive you indoors, you might not be getting enough of this vital vitamin.

    So, if you want to breathe easier this season, load up on D-rich foods like fish (particularly salmon, catfish, and sardines), beef liver, egg yolks, and mushrooms.

    To be on the safe side, I also recommend taking a high-quality supplement of vitamin D --specifically vitamin D3, which is the natural version, and not the synthetic D2.

    You can find it at your local health food store, pharmacy, or online... and for just pennies a day.

  2. Diet and exercise improve asthma

    Breathe easier with this common-sense routine

    You want to enjoy the crisp fall air... but you can't get enough of it into your lungs.

    Unfortunately, autumn is prime time for asthma attacks because weed pollens, mold spores, and other allergens are on the loose.

    But according to a new study, you don't have to hide inside to avoid getting walloped by an attack -- because you can improve your asthma with a sensible lifestyle approach.

    And it's one you should be following anyway, based on how many health conditions it can help improve and prevent.

    All it takes is sticking to a healthy diet and getting some regular exercise.

    Now, diet and exercise have previously been recommended to ease asthma in folks carrying too much weight -- because obesity itself is a risk factor for asthma, and shedding some pounds can improve symptoms.

    But the new study found that these lifestyle changes can ALSO benefit people who don't need to bring down their number on the scale.

    In the study presented at a recent meeting of the European Respiratory Society, about 150 healthy-weight folks with asthma were randomly assigned to one of the following three interventions:

    1. exercise (three spinning classes per week)
    2. healthy diet (a high-protein, low-glycemic diet including at least six portions of fruits and vegetables daily)
    3. exercise AND a healthy diet (a combination of both 1 and 2)

    And as a control, a fourth group received no interventions at all.

    After two months, those in the combined exercise and healthy diet group scored 50 percent HIGHER on measures of asthma control and quality of life than those who received only one or neither of these interventions.

    That means they were BREATHING and FEELING a whole lot better.

    And the COMBINATION of diet and exercise interventions proved better than either one alone.

    Even though the folks assigned to either the healthy diet or exercise group had better asthma control by the end of the study than the "no treatment" group, the bump wasn't statistically significant -- meaning it could have occurred by chance.

    The theory is that -- when done together -- exercise and eating well can give a one-two punch to the inflammation in your lungs that gives rise to asthma symptoms.

    So, if the pollen-filled air is making you gasp for breath, there's no time like today to begin a new diet and fitness routine.

    An easy way to make sure you're eating right is to go with the Paleo (a.k.a. "caveman") diet, which -- like the diet in the study -- includes plenty of protein and produce but eliminates the high-glycemic grains and sweets that can spike your blood sugar and feed inflammation.

    And as far as exercise is concerned, a good rule of thumb is to aim for about two hours of moderate intensity activity weekly, which means all it takes is about a half hour, five days a week.

  3. Good bugs can spare kids from asthma

    Could this be why so many kids can't breathe? Once upon a time, it was the norm for us as kids to go outside and get a little dirt on our hands and clothes. Today... not so much. Kids are spending all their time indoors, glued to electronic screens and bathed in hand sanitizers and antibacterial soaps. Now, the latest...
  4. Cupping can help you beat asthma

    Beat back inflammation to breathe easy You can't breathe, though you're trying. Your chest is in spasm... and you're coughing up a lung. The number of people suffering from asthma is going through the roof -- and it's not just children. Plenty of adults are still struggling with it in their later years... or even dealing with it for the...
  5. Vitamin D reduces asthma-related ER visits

    Vitamin D can cut your chances of a severe asthma attack, keeping you out of the emergency room and away from an extended stay in a hospital bed.
  6. The cleaner your home, the greater your chances for asthma

    Our increasing desire to be germ-free is making us sicker, and a recent study confirms what we’ve already known for a while: People who are exposed to more allergens are less likely to develop asthma. In fact, according to new research, they’re SIX TIMES less likely!
  7. Antibiotics cause asthma in kids

    Exposing kids to antibiotics early in life can double their risk of a lifetime of asthma.
  8. Big Food washing chicken with deadly chemicals

    Factory workers are complaining of asthma, burning skin and more, thanks to a chemical cocktail coating your chicken dinner.
  9. Asthma drugs don't work

    Daily meds given to asthmatics make no difference for most patients, according to an airway-opening new study.
  10. 10 days that can ruin you forever

    If all you get from a 10-day course of antibiotics is a case of the runs, count your lucky stars -- because the side effects of these drugs can be worse than anyone ever thought.

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