5 Practical Tips for Better Lung Health

May 05, 2020

The role of lungs

Your lungs are the primary organs of your respiratory system. Oxygen from the atmosphere is absorbed by the haemoglobin in your bloodstream with the help of your lungs.
Your lungs mainly consist of two parts - trachea and bronchioles. The trachea is the part that carries air from your nose all the way to your lungs. Bronchioles consist of branching blood vessels that are ready to absorb the oxygen from the air. The blood then travels to each cell in your body through your cardiovascular system, supplying it with oxygen. So, your lungs are crucial to the functioning of each and every cell in your body. Here are 5 ways you can protect them:

1. Be aware of the danger to your lungs 

Air pollution, along with various other factors increases the risk of lung disease and puts your lungs in danger of several infections. There are numerous airborne contagions that can adversely affect their functioning. To strengthen your lungs, reducing your exposure to the same in addition to following a healthy lifestyle is essential.

2. Stop Smoking 

When you smoke, you inhale harmful substances that can damage your lungs. With prolonged use, smoking leads to chronic diseases and increases the risk of lung infections. Health conditions commonly associated with smoking include emphysema, chronic bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and lung cancer, to name a few. 

3. Change your diet 

Nutritionists recommend a regular, healthy diet consisting of fruits and vegetables to help you protect your lungs from infections. Protein-rich, high-quality foods that are rich in antioxidants such as grass-fed meat, pastured poultry, eggs and fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines can strengthen your lung muscles. Complex carbohydrates like peas, bran, potatoes with skin, lentils, quinoa, beans, oats, barley, fresh fruits and vegetables are also healthy food options.
Potassium is one of the most important minerals for lung health. Hence, it is recommended that you include avocados, dark leafy vegetables, tomatoes, asparagus, beets, potatoes, bananas and oranges in your diet. Also, reduce the consumption of salt and fried foods to keep your lungs healthy.

4. Exercise for your lungs 

Practice diaphragmatic breathing every day to keep your lungs in great condition. This exercise targets the diaphragm which does most of the hard work when it comes to breathing. To start off, relax your shoulders and sit back comfortably. Place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest. Inhale through your nose for two seconds. Feel the air move into your abdomen and bulge your stomach. Ensure that your stomach moves more than your chest. Breathe out for two seconds through tightly-pressed lips while pressing down on your abdomen. Repeat this ten times.

5. Laugh More 

Laughter is not simply the ‘best medicine’ for your ailments. It is also a great workout that helps increase the capacity of your lungs by expanding them fully. A good laugh also clears out unused air by allowing fresh air to fill up more parts of your lungs.

Even though your body has a natural defense system that protects the lungs, taking them for granted is surely not the way to go. Unfortunately, most of us only pay attention to lung health only when they are at risk of disease. Don’t let it get to that stage. Make a few simple lifestyle changes to keep your lungs in the best condition.
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