Indoor and outdoor air pollution affects our lungs on a daily basis. It is especially important for people who suffer from lung illnesses such as asthma or emphysema to take care of their lungs. Fortunately, there are several foods that are scientifically proven to keep your lungs in good shape.
Water- Nothing can live without water in some form or another. Water can help in a variety of ways. Drinking water helps soothe throat irritation and makes it more comfortable to talk, sing, or shout. These activities are vital because they exercise our lungs by pushing air in and out of our bodies at different rates, expanding and retracting our lung muscles and working the diaphragm. When a chest cold comes on, inhaling steam from a hot shower can help break up congestion in the sinuses and lungs, making it easier to breathe. Just drinking more water helps the body recover from illnesses that affect the lungs such as influenza and stops it from becoming pneumonia.
Carrots, Apricots, and Oranges- These orange colored snacks contain cancer fighting vitamin A which is important for repairing the lining of the lungs and the windpipe preventing lung infections which can be deadly for children with asthma. They also contain a good amount of vitamin C, an anti-oxidant which also has been linked to better lung function. It helps rid the body of toxins including what the lungs have inhaled throughout the day. Oranges contain iron which transfers oxygen to the bloodstream faster. Red and orange fruits and vegetables also contain carotenoids which have been known to assist in the prevention of lung cancer. All of these fruits and vegetables can be tossed into a salad for an easy lunch.
Onions- One of the cheapest and most variable vegetables is also one of the healthiest. Some experts consider onions a super food. It contains vitamins C, an antioxidant, B, which fights cancer, and queretin which helps prevent lung disease. Almost anything cooked on a stove requires onions for flavoring. They are excellent in stir fry, on top of meat, or deep fried in batter as onion rings.
Meat, Fish, and Eggs- Protein is an essential nutrient to every part of the body as it helps rebuild tissue and keep the respiratory muscles going even under distress. Fish contains fatty acids that reduce inflammation and healthy fats to maintain good muscle health. Most of these contain B vitamins which research suggests reduces the risk of lung cancer. For vegetarians and vegans, beans and fortified cereals are an important part of a healthy lung diet.
Dark Leafy Vegetables- Cruciferous vegetables like kale and broccoli have shown that they can reduce the risk of lung cancer by as much as half. They contain B vitamins like meat and eggs but are also rich in antioxidants which dispel pollution from the body. Out of all the dark green vegetables, broccoli is known to be the most beneficial when it comes to lung function.