How I Treated My Asthma Naturally & Why I'll Never Use An Inhaler Again
I will not use my inhaler ever again! That’s what I said to myself a year after I was diagnosed with asthma in 2010. In the summer of 2011, I decided to make a career and lifestyle change and enrolled in a health coaching program to learn more about nutrition. During that time, I did extensive research on asthma, some of the causes, side effects and if there were any cures. Based on my personal research, here are the steps I decided to take.
I identified my asthma triggers.
No one really knows what causes asthma, but it’s important to know some of the triggers and what to avoid. In my case, the cause is still unknown as I didn’t get asthma until I hit my 40s.
I became aware of my shortness of breath immediately after eating or drinking certain things like desserts, wine, peanuts and cheese. Consuming these items can trigger your asthma, in addition to other items such as:
- Cow’s milk (cheese, ice cream, yogurt)
- Processed foods (packaged, canned, boxed, frozen)
- Soft drinks
- Fast food
- Alcoholic beverages
- Bottled juices
- Food coloring
- Desserts (made with sugar, artificial ingredients and high contents of fat)
Asthma can also be brought on by exercise, smoking, allergies, pet dander, dust mites, and even stress. Shortness of breath, wheezing and tightness of the chest are some of the symptoms among people with asthma.
It’s important to not diagnose yourself, but to seek medical advice (as I did!) with any type of physical discomfort.
I started eating a plant-based diet.
As the root of my discomfort was revealed, my determination to get rid of it grew strong and so did my love for whole foods and a healthy lifestyle. I found that a plant-based diet may be beneficial for people with asthma. A diet consisting of fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, oatmeal, brown rice, and whole grains is likely best. It should also include significant amounts of protein.
I immediately started to incorporate more vegan meals daily until I was comfortable with the change. I started eating about 75% vegan and I noticed a change in my asthma symptoms in about 30 days. I didn’t need my inhaler anymore and I haven’t used it since.
I also started naturally losing weight with my new eating style, 25 pounds and counting. It was all mainly a process of elimination for me. I keep track of what bothers me and what doesn’t now and I avoid those items that will cause me discomfort as much as possible. Here is a list of some of my favorite items I enjoy weekly, some of them have good sources of protein (listed in grams) per serving:
- Quinoa – 6 grams
- Walnuts, cashews and almonds – 5 to 8 grams
- Avocado – 10 grams
- Sweet potato – 5 grams
- Spinach – 5 grams
- Broccoli – 5 grams
- Garbanzo beans (Hummus) – 14.5 grams
- Oatmeal – 6 grams
- Sprouted grains – 7- 10 grams
- Nut butters – 8 grams
- Cannellini beans 13-15 grams
l tuned in to what my body needed.
I believe you should always listen to what your body is telling you. I’ve slowly started adding back some poultry and fish occasionally, as my body craves it sometimes. During the colder months, I need a little more fish, and that’s okay. I just do my best to select items that are cage-free, fresh, and organic as often as possible. I don’t eat 100% vegan and I’m not sure that I ever will, but the little changes that I've made have given me amazing results.
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