According to the World Lung Foundation each year more than 3 million children die before the age of five from acute respiratory infections. Also, the World Health Organization’s (WHO) reports on its Global Tuberculosis Control Report 2008 that 9 million people around the world die annually from tuberculosis, which is totally curable. In addition to these infections that cause acute respiratory problems there are more common respiratory issues such as hay fever, bronchitis, colds, coughs, sore throat, flu, nasal congestion, sinusitis, allergies, and bronchial asthma. There are nutritional supplements that can help with these respiratory problems
Nutritional Supplements for Respiratory Problems
Asthma is a serious respiratory disorder. It is the most common chronic illness in children. Symptoms include shortness of breath (dyspnea), cough, chest pain, tightening of the neck muscles, sweating, and cough that produces thick, stringy mucus. Standard treatment for asthma is drugs. However, nutritional supplements can help. Vitamin C may help asthma patients in many ways. It may reduce frequency of colds and flu. It may help maintain healthy lungs, which is essential for preventing asthma attacks. Other vitamins that can be helpful for people who suffer asthma are vitamin E, selenium and beta-carotene.
Symptoms of sinusitis may include thick nasal drainage, cough, headaches, difficulty breathing, nasal drip, sore throat, swollen eyelids and fatigue. Although some cases of sinusitis involve sinus infections that is not always the case. Inflammation of sinuses may occur because of pollen, pollution and many other causes. The treatment of sinusitis should relieve symptoms and reduce inflammation. In this regard, fish oil may be useful. The omega 3 fatty acids present in fish oil have anti-inflammatory properties. They may help control the inflammation that triggers symptoms.
Bromelain, an enzyme present in pineapple, has been reported to relieve symptoms of acute sinusitis. A clinical study has shown, that 87% of patients who took bromelain had good to excellent results in relieving sinusitis symptoms.
Allergies are the body’s response to foreign threat in the air, food, or water we drink. Allergic responses vary from one person to another but usually include a combination of the following symptoms: nasal congestion, sneezing, red, itchy, watery eyes, wheezing sore throat, rashes, or other skin eruptions. Nutritional supplements to relieve and prevent allergies include: fish oils, quercitin, tumeric, bromelain, and boswellia. Fish oils act as anti-inflammatories. Quercitin and turmeric are potent antioxidants. Bromelain is a protease (protein digesting enzyme), which may help digest excess mucus. Boswelia may be a supportive all-purpose nutritional supplement for respiratory problems
Bendich, An and Deckelbaum, R.J. 2005. Preventive Nutrition: The Comprehensive Guide For Health Professionals. Humana Press. ISBN 1592598803.