Patient Blogs | Asthma
Natural Ways to Help My Asthma
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Recently, I was in the store bragging to someone about the type of alternative therapies that I try for my migraines and other conditions. When the topic moved to asthma, I froze. I started thinking how strange it was that I couldn’t rattle off a list of alternative therapies that I have tried for my asthma. 

For some time now, I’ve just thought, ‘well, asthma is what it is!’ It affects your lungs as well as other areas of your body, and it just is what it is. 

I figured I could do things to avoid triggers, but there probably isn’t anything on the market from a natural standpoint that would help me. What a contradiction! I’ve used home remedies and natural therapies for many of my other conditions -- everything from peppermint oil for migraines to ginger for stomach upset. However, when it came to asthma, perhaps I had just phoned it in. 

In recent months, I’ve started looking online, checking out YouTube videos, and talking to friends with asthma to see if they’ve tried anything that has helped them. 

Here’s my little laundry list for next year that I plan to explore a little bit more. Some of these I’ve tried already (not knowing the connection to asthma), others I’d like to try, and some may stay on the ‘think about’ list for the time being. In other words, green, yellow, or red lights for me. 

  • Red light therapyMy dad has a small red-light sauna in the basement, but I’ve never made the connection to asthma. He’s offered me several chances to try it out, but I’ve always passed, thinking it was a little too sci-fi looking. Recently, however, I saw a few things online suggesting that red-light therapy could help with asthma. The next time I visit my parents, I might try it out. [For me? Yellow light]
  • More vitamin D. I’m already well aware that I’m low in vitamin D. I’ve been reading all about how not having enough vitamin D can cause a host of issues with the body (and mind). Vitamin D is key to so many bodily functions from the immune system to fertility. I’m taking a daily supplement and I'm due to get checked again soon. I will pay closer attention to how my asthma does as my vitamin D gets to optimum levels. [For me? Green light]
  • More sunlight. I’ve always considered myself more of a "moon baby," but the research around good health and the connection to time (with sunscreen) in the sunlight is ample. Sunlight = vitamin D, which means some improvements in health. I’ve been testing this out by sitting in the sun when I’m fighting a cold or just have low energy and voila – it works like clockwork. Again, I’ll pay closer attention to how my asthma does with more dedicated time in the sun. [For me? Green light] 
  • Hot beverages. I thought this was just for colds and flu, but I’ve seen some interesting articles online about how drinking warm liquids can keep your capillaries open and help keep your lungs clear. I tend to lean toward cold beverages unless I’m sick, but I’ll start swapping my iced lattes for warm teas and take note. [For me? Green light]
  • Lung cleanse supplements. I’ve seen a lot of products on the market report to be a “natural lung cleanse” or detox. However, I have no idea how they work or whether the ingredients are safe. These may have worked for some, but I need more research before I’m willing to try them out just yet. [For me? Red light]
  • Anti-inflammatory diet. Several health conditions (particularly the things I struggle with) can be connected to increased inflammation. I am looking into foods that are anti-inflammatory like turmeric, cucumbers, fish oil, etc. to see if they help me feel better. I’m working to decrease sugar, caffeine, and alcohol, and for me, dairy increases mucus in my body. [For me? Green light]
  • Magnesium. I already take magnesium to help with my migraines, digestion, and relaxation. I recently saw that magnesium is bronchodilator and can help open air passages. That was good news to know that it’s possible my bedtime magnesium could help with a host of things. [For me? Green light.]


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Photo Credit: martin-dm / E+ via Getty Images

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Michele Jordan

Michele Jordan

Diagnosed since 2005

Michele Jordan, a Los Angeles-based freelance writer, was diagnosed with asthma in 2005. Her writing background includes magazine and online journalism, grant writing, and now screenwriting. She is passionate about both physical and mental health and is the author of the book Thanking Your Way to Joy: Daily Gratitude Journal. When not writing, Michele enjoys traveling with her husband, trying new, healthy recipes, and cuddling beagles. Her latest passion includes exploring and discussing issues around equity in housing, health care, and the justice system.

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