Eating a balanced diet is necessary for all human beings. But when you have asthma, it is all the more important to know what food is beneficial for you and what might harm you. Even though there is no proof that certain types of food can cause severe or frequent asthma attacks, it is still better if you eat nutritious and fresh food. To keep your symptoms in check, it is recommended that you include what is generally considered to be the best food for asthma patients.
Asthma is a condition in which there’s inflammation and narrowing of the airways and it becomes difficult for the person to breath due to extra mucus. Asthma can be minor or might even interfere with daily activities. The right kind of diet goes a long way in keeping asthma under control.
Good Food for Asthma Patients
When looking for the best food for asthma patients, make sure the diet is rich with following nutrients:
1. Vitamin D
It helps to reduce the frequency of asthma attacks in children between the ages of six and 15. In order to add vitamin D to your diet, the following foods should be included:
- Fortified orange juice
- Egg yolks
- Fatty fish
Children who have low magnesium levels between the ages of 11 and 19 might have low lung volume which can be improved by adding the following magnesium-rich foods to your diet:
- Dark chocolate
- Pumpkin seeds
3. Vitamin A
Higher levels of vitamin A improve lung function and decrease the severity of asthma attacks. The following food are rich in vitamin A and should be included in your diet:
- Sweet potatoes
- Lettuce, spinach or kale
4. Omega Fatty Acids
This is found in fatty fish such as tuna, sardines, herring and salmon that helps lessen the amounts of immunoglobulin E that might cause breathing problems in people.
Other food items that you can include in asthma diet are:
- Apples: eating apples lowers the risk of severe asthma attacks and increases lung function.
- Bananas: this fruit has high amounts of antioxidants and potassium for which it decreases wheezing and regulates a good lung function.
- Seeds and nuts: such as almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts and other raw seeds such as sunflower seeds are rich in vitamin E that helps cut down coughing and wheezing.
- Tomatoes: the lycopene present in tomatoes helps people with asthma.
- Whole grain foods: such as whole oats, buckwheat, and wholewheat pasta can be included in the diet that help control this condition.
If you have an allergy from any of the food mentioned above, then they should be avoided at all costs as food allergies may trigger and worsen your asthma.
Foods to Avoid for Asthma Patients
Below is a list of all the foods that you should strictly avoid when you have asthma:
- Any food you are allergic to should be avoided at all costs
- Sulfites – alcohol, bottled lemons, dried fruits, and pickled foods
- Salicylates – spicy and flavoured foods, coffee and tea.
- Beer or wine
- Prepared or frozen shrimp
- Prepared or packaged potatoes
- Canned fruits and bottled fruit juices
People who have asthma can maintain a well-rounded diet to help stabilise their condition. Even though there’s no food that can completely eliminate asthma but the following steps might help your condition:
1. Maintain a healthy weight: obesity can worsen asthma. Losing a little bit of weight can also improve your condition hence the right foods for asthma patients is necessary.
2. Avoid allergenic food: allergy-triggering food can cause reactions that might flare the asthma symptoms.
3. Include a lot of fruits and vegetables: they are considered to be the best food for asthma patients as they are rich in antioxidants and vitamins C and E, helping reduce the lung inflammation and irritation.
There is no one single magic food for asthma patients that has the power to cure asthma. But intake of a wide range of vitamins and nutrients can keep you healthy and help keep asthma attacks in control. Knowing about what to eat and what foods to avoid when you have such a condition will help you in the long run. Thus, a balanced diet with the right amount of exercise and guidance from your doctor can prove to be helpful.