Our lungs are an essential part of the respiratory system. They are one of the most active organs of the human body. In order to function properly, it is important to have healthy and strong lungs as a pair. The human body can survive days without food and water but not very long without air. So, it is essential to keep your lungs clean so they can provide fresh air (oxygen) to the cells in your body.
A healthy person breathes nearly about 20,000 times in a day. The breathing process makes use of every part of the respiratory system, including the throat, nose, windpipe and lungs. If the air we breathe is impure, then our respiratory system filters out the harmful toxins in it making it pure for us. But this happens only if our respiratory mechanism is healthy. If our respiratory system is unhealthy, then it isn’t able to filter the air and this in turn causes our lungs to age faster than normal.
Various air pollutants, smoking, genetic problems, and infectious diseases can damage the airways and can cause severe lung problems. Some of the most common lung problems include chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchitis, asthma, pneumonia, lung cancer, cystic fibrosis and emphysema.
If we take good and proper care of our lungs they can last a lifetime. Our lungs are very durable until and unless they’re not attacked by outside factors. They don’t get into trouble until you yourself get them into trouble. There are a number of things that you can do to keep your lungs working properly. Simple changes in your diet, lifestyle, and overall health habits can be really effective for the overall health of your lungs.
Given below are 20 of the most effective ways that you can implement for your lungs to perform at their best:
20. Perform Breathing Exercises
The best way to keep your lungs healthy and strong is to do deep breathing exercises everyday. Breathing exercises help cleanse your lungs, strengthen them and remove all harmful toxins. Deep breathing also provides sufficient nourishing oxygen to the cells in your body. You just have to find a quiet place to do the deep breathing exercises regularly everyday for at least 10 minutes.
19. Consume Healthy, Lung-Cleansing Foods
Studies suggest that foods rich in antioxidants are good for the proper functioning of your lungs. Antioxidants rich foods include all the leafy greens such as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale etc. In addition to that, pistachios and cayenne peppers are also good for your lungs. Pistachios contain a special type of vitamin E known as “gamma-tocopherol” which reduces the chances of having lung cancer. Cayenne peppers are effective for cough, cold, flu, chest congestion and sore throat.
18. Keep yourself Away From Smoking
It is always better to avoid smoking if you want your lungs to be healthy and strong. It has been known for decades that cigarette smoke is harmful for lungs; still many people continue to do it. And it is not only about cigarettes – smoking cigars, pipes or marijuana can be harmful too. Smoking severely damages the lungs and causes chronic lung diseases such as lung cancer, bronchitis and emphysema. Even second-hand and third-hand smoke can be dangerous too – just staying in an environment where other people have smoked is extremely bad for your health.
17. Exercise Regularly
Exercising and working out is always good for your respiratory fitness. The more you exercise, the easier it will be for your lungs to supply sufficient oxygen to your heart and muscles. You should perform cardiovascular exercises daily for 20 minutes since these exercises are good for the muscles surrounding your lungs. Doing aerobic exercises such as walking, biking or dancing also improves lung capacity.
16. Don’t Expose Yourself To Air Pollutants
There are various pollutants present in the air that can cause damage to your lungs. If you’re suffering from any lung disease such as asthma, then these pollutants can make it even worse. What you need to do is limit yourself from being exposed to such pollutants in the air. Avoid burning trash, drive less, support clean air laws and avoid living in industrial areas.
15. Practice Proper Hygiene
You should practice proper hygiene to maintain good health of your lungs, especially if you are prone to chest and lung infections. Practicing proper hygiene reduces the risk of various respiratory diseases such as cough, cold and flu. Always wash your hands thoroughly before eating something. You can use a hand-sanitizer if there’s no water or soap available. When you cough or sneeze, always cover your mouth and nose to avoid the germs from spreading. Also, vacuum your home regularly if you have carpets.
14. Purify Your Indoor Air
In addition to limiting yourself from outdoor air pollution, you need to take into account indoor air pollutants as well. There are various indoor sources of pollution such as pet dander, mold, wood-burning stoves, fireplaces, paint, construction and building materials, candles, air fresheners, and chemical based cleaning products that have toxic fumes. You can purify your indoor air by using indoor air purification systems, improving ventilation in the house, using air cleaners and keeping houseplants that act as natural air purifiers. Some common houseplants that you can keep in your home are spider plant, Boston fern, bamboo palm, and peace lily.
13. Consume Respiratory Cleansing Herbs
For proper functioning of the lungs, it is advisable to take some useful lung cleansing herbs from plants like eucalyptus, peppermint, osha root, oregano and lungwort. These herbs are being used as natural treatments for various respiratory conditions for many years.
12. Play A Musical Instrument
A great way to improve your lung capacity is to play a musical instrument. You can learn how to play a wind instrument like a flute, mouth organ, trumpet, tuba, or a saxophone to improve your lung health and capacity. While playing a wind instrument, you have to use your lung capacity to the fullest so that you can control your breathing and expand your lungs fully. Singing also keeps the lungs healthy.
11. Use Castor Oil Pack
A castor oil pack works wonders for lung cleansing, especially if you have chest congestion. Castor oil has always been used as a health tonic that draws out the harmful toxins out of your body. You can easily make castor oil packs at home and they can be used as vapor rubs by placing them on the chest.
10. Drink Plenty Of Water
To maintain healthy lungs, it is necessary to keep yourself hydrated everyday. Drinking enough water thins down the mucus lining your lungs and airways, while lack of water causes the mucus to get thicker and sticky.
9. Visit For Regular Checkups
Having regular health checkups is important for healthy and proper functioning of your lungs. It is advisable to consult a doctor immediately if you experience any problem in your lungs such as lack of sufficient breath during normal activities, pain while breathing or a constant cough. Many lung diseases remain undiagnosed until they turn serious so it’s better to get a health checkup regularly.
8. Walk Fast
Increasing your walking speed is also good for your lungs. Research shows that your walking speed determines how long you will live. Now this does not necessarily means that if you speed up your walk you’ll live longer automatically. Instead, this means that if you cannot speed up or find yourself struggling while increasing your walking speed, then there might be and underlying health issue and there might be a need to consult your doctor.
7. Follow Yoga Breathing Techniques
Learning to do yoga breathing exercises is another great way to improve your lung capacity. If you usually breathe from your chest then you are a shallow breather. It is advisable to take long, deep breaths because this activity not only sends fresh oxygen deep down to your lungs, but also helps your lungs to perform better.
6. Get Involved in Challenging Breathing Exercises
Challenge your lungs to perform difficult respiratory exercises such as breathing using a straw or blowing a balloon. Such type of challenging exercises will improve your overall lung performance. These exercises are just to make you more aware of your breathing techniques so that you can enhance your breathing over time.
5. Use Safe Products
There are many household products (like cleaning products, etc.) that can cause harm to your lungs since these products release dangerous gases. You must protect yourself by sticking to safe products, using a dust mask whenever cleaning the house and working in an area where there is proper ventilation. Also, avoid using oil paints and choose water paints instead.
4. Loose Extra Pounds
Maintaining a healthy weight is also essential for the lungs to keep working properly. People with more weight usually have weak lungs as the excessive weight compresses all the respiratory muscles which in turn makes the lungs work harder. Make sure that you follow a nutritionally sound diet in order to maintain a healthy weight.
3. Protect Yourself From Harmful Chemicals When On Work
Today there are many jobs that can be harmful for your lungs, especially if you’re a construction worker you have to encounter chemicals, paint fumes and what not. It is good if your employer provides protective equipment but if not, then you must immediately get yourself one.
2. Check for Harmful Gases in the House Like Radon
Another major cause of lung diseases is the presence of harmful radioactive gases in the house, such as radon. Radon is produced by the breakdown of uranium in the ground. This gas usually leaks into your house through the cracks in the walls. It is advisable to get your home checked and tested once before you move into it.
1. Splatter Water On Your Face
Research shows that splashing cold water on your face while holding your breath slows down the heart rate which is good for the overall health of your lungs.
By simply following these effective tips in your life, you are all ready to set yourself up for a whole lifetime of more healthier, heartier lungs.