Many individuals want to befit and healthy. Rarely, however, do they think about maintaining and preserving their lungs’ wellbeing. The time has come to change that. Respiratory diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), sthma, are the leading cause of death excluding lung cancer which is caused when much care to the lung’s health is not given.
The fact is that your lungs get mature with time, much like your heart, joints, and other organs of body parts. They can become less versatile and lose their resilience, which can make breathing more difficult. But you can help preserve the health of your lungs and keep them functioning optimally well into your senior years by following such safe behaviors.
Why are healthy lungs important
For the living, every cell in your body needs oxygen. Oxygen and other gases are found in the air we breathe. Oxygen is moved into the bloodstream once in the lungs and carried through your body. Oxygen is traded from each cell in your body for a waste gas called carbon dioxide. Your bloodstream then transports this waste gas back to the lungs, where it is removed and then exhaled from the bloodstream. This critical method, called gas exchange, is naturally performed by your lungs and respiratory system.
Your respiratory system performs other roles that are important for breathing, in addition to gas exchange. They include:
- Bringing air to the correct temperature of the body and hydrating it to the correct level of humidity.
- Safeguarding the body against toxic substances. By coughing, sneezing, filtering or swallowing them, this is done.
- Supporting the sense of smell for you.
Tips for healthy lungs
Here are 10 daily tips to preserve your tiptop shape for lung health and help prevent lung disease:
- Stop secondhand smoke and smoking, too.
- Be aware of the air quality of your surroundings. If you are worried, search for toxins or contaminants and discuss this with your doctor.
- Clean your hands regularly with soap and water to avoid common colds and respiratory diseases (or using an alcohol-based hand cleaner if not available).
- During the flu season, avoid big crowds or when you get wind that some other respiratory disease is going around.
- To stop transmitting colds and respiratory diseases to others, stay home if you are sick.
- Get your yearly flu shot and encourage everyone to do the same in your household.
- To improve lung fitness and overall health, get daily cardiovascular exercise.
- Practice exercises for deep breathing, or diaphragmatic breathing.
- To avoid damaging bacteria from spreading from your mouth to your upper airway, remain on top of your dental health and oral hygiene
- Get routine check-ups and explore any questions about your lung health, including any signs of lung cancer and family history of lung disease, from your primary care doctor.
Do not smoke
The main cause of lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including chronic bronchitis and emphysema, is cigarette smoking. Cigarette smoke can narrow air passages and make it harder to breathe. It causes lung swelling or chronic inflammation, which may lead to chronic bronchitis. Cigarette smoke kills lung tissue over time and can cause alterations that turn into cancer. It is never too late to profit from stopping if you smoke. Whenever you are able, the American Lung Association will help.
Limit exposure to contaminants indoors that can damage your lungs
Secondhand smoke, home, and office chemicals, and radon can all cause or worsen lung disease. Make it smoke-free for your home and car. Check the radon at your house. Do not exercise outside on days of poor air. And if you are worried that anything in your home, school, or work may make you sick, speak to your healthcare provider.
Minimize Outdoor Air Pollution exposure
The consistency of the air outside will vary from day to day, and breathing is often unhealthy. Knowing how your health is impacted by outdoor air pollution and helpful ways to reduce excessive exposure will help keep you and your family well. Lung health can also be directly affected by climate change and natural disasters.
A cold or other respiratory infection may become very severe at times. To defend yourself, there are many things you can do:
- With soap and water, wash your hands regularly. If you are unable to wash, alcohol-based cleaners are a suitable alternative.
- During the cold and flu season, avoid crowds.
- Good oral hygiene will keep you safe from the germs that cause infections in your mouth. At least twice a day, brush your teeth, and visit your dentist at least every six months.
- Get vaccinated against influenza next year. To find out if the pneumonia vaccine is right for you, talk to your healthcare provider.
Get regular check-ups
Daily check-ups, even when you are not well, help avoid diseases. This is particularly true for lung disease, which goes undetected until it is extreme sometimes. Your healthcare professional will listen to your breathing during a check-up and listen to your concerns. Learn more about your choices if you need health insurance.
Being physically active will help keep your lungs safe, whether you are young or old, slender or heavy, able-bodied, or living with a chronic illness or disability. Learn more about how your lungs can be improved by exercise.
- Chronic cough: It is considered chronic to have a cough you have had for eight weeks or more. This is a significant early symptom that shows you that your respiratory system is doing something wrong.
- Shortness of breath: Having shortness of breath that doesn’t go away after exercise, or that you have after little or no exertion, is not natural. The sensation that it is difficult to breathe in is often a warning sign of laborious or difficult breathing.
- Chronic development of mucus: The airways contain mucus, also called sputum or phlegm, as a protection against infections or irritants. This could suggest lung disease if your mucus development has lasted a month or longer.
- Wheezing: Breath of noise
- Coughing up blood: It can come from your lungs or upper respiratory tract if you are coughing up blood. It indicates a health issue wherever it comes from.
- Chronic chest pain: Unexplained chest pain that lasts for a month or longer is also a warning sign, particularly if it gets worse when you inhale or cough.
When you have to Speak to your Doctor
By taking these steps, plan for a visit to your healthcare provider:
- Bring along with you a copy of your medical records. Or, see if a copy can be submitted from your previous healthcare provider. If your medical history can not be accessed, you can also write a brief note about your health conditions when they occurred and the health care provider(s) when they occurred.
- Create a list of all the drugs you are currently using. This means medications that are prescribed and over-the-counter, as well as herbs and supplements and other non-traditional approaches that you use to treat the illness.
- Create a list of all the providers of healthcare you see and why you see them.
- Create a list of the symptoms you have and mention which ones are most troubling to you. To make them better, write down when they began and what you did (if anything).
Best foods for healthy lungs
- Beets and beet greens
- Olive oil
- Swiss chard
- Brazil nuts
- Tomato and tomato products
- Green tea
- Red cabbage
A smart way to improve and maintain lung health is to eat a diet rich in healthy foods and beverages. Some examples of foods and beverages that have been shown to support the function of the lungs are coffee, dark leafy greens, fatty fish, peppers, tomatoes, olive oil, oysters, blueberries, and pumpkin. To help promote the health of your lungs, consider incorporating a few of the foods and beverages mentioned above into your diet.
- Quit Smoke
- Avoid Exposure Pollutants That Can Damage Your Lungs
- Minimize Exposure to Outdoor Air Pollution
- Prevent Infection
- Get Regular Check-ups and doctor appointment
- Exercise and yoga