Hi I'm Marie, I'm a Nutritionist and PT, I run marathons, swim, lift weights, my passion is Thai boxing and I have Asthma, but certainly WONT stop me! - 300,000 million worldwide, Five million (1-12 adults) people suffer from asthma in the UK alone, over 1,000 people in the UK die each year, that's 9 people a day.
With pollution still rising at a very alarming rates, lack of exercise and poor lifestyle and nutrition choices "asthma" is on the increase, over 2 million people are walking around blissfully unaware they are asthmatic.
Diet and exercise can be a very powerful Allie in asthma management, being active can really benefit asthma suffers, I should know I'm one of them! 8 out of 10 people with asthma are NOT doing enough exercise, often because they are worried it will trigger their symptoms this often not the case, Let me tell you now The last time I had an asthma attack whist exercising was when I was about 13/14, I'm now 42, on the whole it's only benefited my asthma, and I've done some sort of exercise daily for the last 16yrs, as a result I rarely suffer attacks when they strike they are often mild and easily manageable, non the less still very scary!!
Don't let asthma hold you back, consult your GP (doctor) or asthma nurse for help!
Symptoms of Asthma
- Difficulty breathing
- Sense of choking
- Difficulty exhaling
- Tightness in the chest
- Bronco spasms
Many celebrities and pro athletes are asthmatic, Paula Radcliffe, Dennis Rodman, Mark Spittz, Martin Scorsese to name but a few! Exercise will really help you improve your lung capacity, which will help you manage your asthma during exercise. We all know that exercise is good for us in lots of many different ways, it helps your heart, bones and digestive system stay healthy, keeps off unwanted weight gain, releases endorphins, making you feel more happy and energised, it also reduces stress, a major trigger for some, and helps you sleep better! You will be able to better cope with every day chores like cleaning and shopping and you will have more stamina for activities, soon you will begin to worry less about your asthma, it will give the confidence to manage it!.
Top Tip - Gradually build up your exercise, try swimming, walking, yoga , Pilates
My asthma has worsened over the last couple of years, especially the bronco spams which influenced me to look more carefully into the relationship between Nutrition and Asthma. There's really no diet that will eliminate or cure your asthma, but there a number of things you can do to help. It's well known that certain foods trigger asthma, note down what triggers yours and limit or remove from diet! Avoid processed foods, dairy products, sweets, hydrogenated fats, reduce ALCOHOL, if wine is a trigger.
There's plenty evidence to suggest that people that eat diets richer in Vitamins C, D and E, beta carotene, flavonoids, magnesium, selenium and omega -3 fatty acids, bromelain, have much lower rates of asthma. And I know from my own experience including these foods has greatly reduced my symptoms and severity of attacks, particularly magnesium rich foods, there's a lot of promising research on the link between magnesium and asthma, ever heard of Dr Carol Dean - The Magnesium Miracle? (the link is down below) Makes for some very interesting reading. So The diet of an asthma sufferer should be one that includes generous amounts of veggie. Lightly steam your vegetables it will help to bring out their flavour, as well as making them easily digestible. Fruits can be even more sweet and satisfying than sugary sweet treats, and they're certainly much better for you! Imagine a delicious fresh, organic mixed greens salad drizzled with pure, extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing, followed by a juicy, pink salmon steak oven baked with fresh rosemary and served on a bed of brightly-coloured steamed vegetables, followed by dessert, a big bowl of sweet, ripe fresh organic fruit. They are packed with powerful antioxidant nutrients designed to protect against the harmful effects of pollution. The above is just one example of a healthy, delicious meal, ideal for people with asthma.
So be sure to Forget the burgers and chips! add a few servings of baked or poached cold water or oily fish to your diet every week (salmon, cod, halibut, mackerel, tuna, sardines, and herring) I personally follow a "Mediterranean Diet", this approach to food, which has been shown to provide unique benefits in bringing asthma Symptoms under control. The powerful antioxidant support provided by fresh organic produce (fruits and veggies) are likely to be a major contributor to lung and airway support, coupled with the rich array of anti inflammatory compounds found in the foods like extra virgin oil, seeds and fish. https://nakednut35.wordpress.
- Broccoli sprouts
- Mustard greens
- Sunflower seeds
- Sweet potato
- Citrus fruits
Foods to eliminate milk and dairy, which are well documented to increase the severity of asthma symptoms, followed by eggs, Ditch the Salt, use flavorful and beneficial herbs and spices, garlic, Rosemary and dill they may lead to improvements in asthma as well as making your food taste a lot better. However, adverse food reactions vary greatly depending on the person. A food and symptom diary or an allergy elimination diet may be helpful for identifying food triggers. (See a qualified health care professional Removing these foods from the diet) it will help identify and may help reduce the symptoms.
Have you ever kept track of what happens to you after you eat certain foods? Adverse food reactions may also contribute to the symptoms of many asthma sufferers. Most asthma patients know of at least one food that makes their symptoms worse or triggers their asthma attacks.
How carefully do you read food labels? Artificial food additives, like colourings and preservatives, are strong asthma triggers for many people. Tartrazine, or yellow dye #5, can be a huge source of problems for asthma sufferers, especially ones who also react badly to aspirin. Unfortunately, tartrazine like many other " nasties" which are found in many processed foods including tinned vegetables, chewing gum, soft drinks, hot dogs, some pastas, butter, some breads, cheeses, fruit juices or drinks, ice cream, jellies, pickles and relish, sweets and even some prescription or over-the-counter medications. NB - People who react to tartrazine must read food labels very carefully or else they can wind up with an asthma attack. Other additives (nasties) to watch for include MSG (monosodium glutamate), which is used to flavour many processed foods, used in Chinese takeaways, and sulphites, which are used as preservatives in many pre-packaged foods and alcoholic beverages. Asthmatics who have problems with these and other chemical additives should be very careful to avoid them. Fortunately, organic, healthy foods don't contain artificial dyes or preservatives and are therefore much safer for us to eat.
Whilst we can't always control our environment and pollutants we certainly can influence what we put into our bodies, let your mindset lead the way and create a lifestyle that only brings you nothing but health and happiness. I hope you find this blog inspiring, do consult your GP before starting any fitness plan! Please feel to comment or contact me directly if you have any questions? I can be found over on Twitter and Instagram as @Nakednut35 or over on Facebook simply search for Naked Nuts Nutrition - All my other blog post and recipes can be found over on Www.Nakednut35.wordpress.com
Nothing But Love, Health and Happiness - Marie X