Afraid that foods you eat can worsen your asthma symptoms? Here’s what’s safe and what to avoid

  • Asthma is a condition where the airways swell and can lead to difficult breathing, coughing, and wheezing.
  • Medications like inhaled corticosteroids help keep asthma under control and treat airway inflammation.
  • Certain foods and drinks can also ease asthma symptoms, and there are a few that you should also avoid.

Your diet and what you put into your body can play a significant role in easing or aggravating symptoms of asthma.

Here are some foods to add to your next shopping list and other foods to avoid.

Go: Milk

Milk isn’t just a good source of calcium, but also provides a great source of magnesium. According to Colleen Pierre, RD, magnesium helps fight asthma by keeping your airways open and relaxing the muscles surrounding the bronchi.

Go: Green leafy veggies and berries

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A rainbow of fruits and veggies like spinach are packed with vitamin C, which strengthens the immune system and reduces wheezing in children.

Go: Carrots

The orange vegetable helps protect against asthma induced by exercise. This is because beta-carotene in this vegetable helps strengthen the immune system against asthma attacks. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant converted into vitamin A in the body. Usually, a more vivid orange means the carrot contains more beta-carotene.

Go: Avocados

These fruits contain an antioxidant called glutathione which protects the lungs against airway stress as well as tissue damage. Avocados are also rich in heart-healthy fats that can lower bad cholesterol and help boost the levels of your good cholesterol.

Go: Fatty fish

Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fish like mackerel, salmon, and tuna. These fatty acids are not just good for the heart but protect against asthma by providing an anti-inflammatory effect that can counter bronchial inflammation. A study at the University of Southhampton also found that pregnant mothers can also lessen the chance of the development of asthma in their child by eating salmon twice a week.

Pass: Fast food

According to the British Medical Journal, an international study involving almost 2 million children observed that there is a link between eating fast food and asthma risk. The risk of severe asthma increased by 39% for teens and 27% for children if they had 3 or more servings of fast food in a week. Researchers speculate that this may be because fast food contains high levels of saturated trans fats that can weaken the immune system.

Pass: Dried fruits, wine, and instant soups or potatoes

Sulfites are used in dried fruits, wine, and mixes for instant soups and potatoes. This preservative can trigger asthma attacks and people who are hypersensitive to it may even experience anaphylaxis. Processed foods and dried fruits also contain salicylate, another compound known to trigger asthma attacks.

Pass: Cheese and mushrooms

Allergies triggered by mildew or molds may be a good sign to avoid foods like cheese, mushrooms, and hot dogs as they contain mold. This might trigger an asthma attack just as much as spending time in a moldy room could. Also carefully monitor your consumption of fermented foods like beer, vinegar, and soy sauce.

Source: The Healthy

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