9 Tips to Optimize Your Lung Health
- Sep 18, 2022
- Kelly Harrington, MS, RDN
Breathe in, breathe out. Breathe in, breathe out. You breathe in 11,000 liters of air each day so if you’re suffering from lung disease or infection, this transfer of oxygen becomes more difficult, resulting in various health issues. Please protect this fragile organ. If you're dealing with wildfire smoke and looking for ways to support your respiratory system and lung health, here is a lot of information about how to detoxify wildfire smoke.
Here are some natural ways to support oxygen utilization and promote optimal lung function:
1. Stay Hydrated
Getting enough water is as important for the lungs as it is for the rest of the body. Water helps keep the mucosal linings in the lungs thin and assists in flushing toxins from the lungs. Dehydration, on the other hand, causes mucus to become thick and sticky, which can decrease respiration and make you more susceptible to respiratory issues and illness.
Solution: Be sure to drink enough purified water, at least half of your body weight in pounds, in ounces of water daily (i.e. if you weigh 200 pounds, aim for drinking 100 ounces of water each day).
2. Simple Deep Breathing Through Your Nose
Do you breathe through your mouth instead of your nose? Research suggests mouth breathing can decrease lung function and contribute to allergies, which can lead to upper airway obstruction.
Solution: Learn how to breathe through your nose.
Oxidative stress from a variety of sources such as smoke, toxins in the air, and naturally occurring reactive oxygen species can lead to an imbalanced ratio of damaging oxidants to health-promoting antioxidants in your body. This can weaken your lung tissues. Providing antioxidant support may help maintain a healthy balance of oxidants and antioxidants in your body.
Solution: Check out our antioxidant supplement support here.
4. Lung-Supporting Nutrients
There are specific vitamins, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and detoxification-supporting nutrients that promote overall immune health within the respiratory system. Octacosanol is one specific nutrient that promotes healthy oxygen utilization in the tissues of the body, such as the heart, muscles, lungs, and brain.
Solution: Check out this Lung + Immune product. There's nothing on the market like this!
5. Moderate Exercise
Moderate exercise (20-45 minutes of exercise at about a 60% intensity level) reduces the risk of upper respiratory tract infection by about 50%! Too much exercise, on the other hand, suppresses your immune system.
Solution: Get moderate exercise 3-5 times per week.
6. Sit Up Straight
Poor posture, like slouching, compresses your lungs, which can decrease the volume of air you take in, lead to shallow breathing, and loss of lung function.
Solution: Focus on core strength and diaphragmatic breathing to facilitate upright posture.
7. Purify Your Air
You breathe in 11,000 liters of air each day. Air quality is one of the best ways to keep your genes and lungs functioning well.
Solution: Invest in an air purifier.
We think a lot about the bacteria in our guts, but most of us fail to think about supporting the bacteria in our respiratory systems. The physiology of the respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts are closely related, and probiotics can help maintain healthy levels of bacteria in both of these important systems.
Solution: Take a daily probiotic.
9. Vitamin D
This essential vitamin is important for respiratory health and lung function. One way is by supporting the lung’s innate resistance to pathogens.
Solution: Have your vitamin D3 levels tested by your healthcare practitioner. Take a daily vitamin D3/K2 supplement.