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Lungs are one of the most important organs in our body. Hence, keeping them healthy and in good shape is imperative. There are several ways by which we can keep our lungs healthy. One of them is by eating the food, which is good for our lungs. So which are these foods? Read on and learn about fifteen such foods which can boost your lung health.
15 Foods That Are Good for Your Lungs
Eating the right food is (if not directly), indirectly connected to healthy lungs. A high-fat diet can cause cardiovascular problems which may also affect our lungs and may be a reason for lung cancer or other health issues like asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, and cystic fibrosis. Eating low-fat food, fresh fruits and lots of green vegetables along with indulging in some exercises, yoga, and pranayama every day is a definite way to keep your lungs healthy. Listed below are 15 foods that will keep your lungs healthy.
Garlic is rich in allicin and has anti-inflammatory properties, which reduces damage caused by free radicals. Consuming garlic lowers the risk of infections and inflammation, which can cause respiratory disorders like asthma or bronchitis and serious diseases like lung cancer.
Like garlic, ginger too has anti-inflammatory properties. In India, it is commonly used as a spice to add aroma and taste to the food. It is also added to tea, especially to cure a cold and cough. It also helps in the detoxifying process of the lungs and can be good food for a lung infection.
Chillies are hot and spicy due to the presence of compound capsaicin. This helps in the secretion of the mucous, thereby clearing it from the respiratory tract and protecting the mucous membrane in the upper and lower respiratory tract. Since chillies are also a rich source of beta-carotene, they protect us against asthma. The anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory properties keep respiratory disorders as well as lung cancer at bay.
Turmeric is rich in compound curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. It helps fight infections. Turmeric also acts as a natural shield against asthma.
Since walnuts are rich in omega-3 acids and have anti-inflammatory properties. Thus eating a few walnuts every day can help the body to ward off respiratory disorders.
6. Orange Fruits
Orange fruits like papayas, oranges, and pumpkin are a storehouse of antioxidants and Vitamin C. Vitamin C can help fight infections and lower inflammation. You should eat a variety of fruits to keep your lungs healthy.
7. Leafy Vegetables
Green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, Brussel sprouts, etc. consist of phytochemicals that help in the prevention of dreadful diseases like cancer. Due to the presence of anti-inflammatory properties in them, these veggies reduce the risk of respiratory diseases like asthma. Including spinach in your daily diet will boost your immune system and keep your lungs healthy.
Including fish like mackerel, salmon, carp etc. in your daily diet can give your body the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, that your body needs. These are better known as poly-unsaturated fatty acids that are rich in anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic, and anti-oxidative properties. All these properties in fish protect the lungs against all kinds of lung diseases and keep them healthy. In case you do not like eating fish, you can take fish oil supplements after consulting a physician.
Chicken can provide you with lean protein and is a rich source of selenium and zinc which can strengthen your immune system. Moreover, a bowl of hot chicken soup with some powdered black pepper in it will help in thinning the mucus and cleaning the air passage, thus keeping your lungs healthy.
The fruit is a great way to keep your lungs healthy and free from all types of infection and diseases. Since it is a rich source of antioxidant compounds like Vitamin C, VItamin E, beta-carotene, and lycopene, it helps in the elimination of the free oxygen radicals which can cause many types of lung diseases.
Broccoli can easily be included in the list of superfoods. In fact, it is believed to be one of the best foods to eat if you have recently quit smoking. It can eliminate the nicotine toxins which get stored in the lungs while smoking and the sulforaphane in it heals the lungs from the damage caused due to smoking. This, in turn, can help in the prevention of cancer in the lungs.
It is a fruit which is highly beneficial for our health as it contains several vitamins and minerals like Vitamin C and Vitamin B6, and thiamine, folic acid and magnesium. Grapefruit is a rich source of antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties. It is great food for cleansing your lungs as these properties help in detoxifying the lungs and helps in preventing diseases like cancer, asthma, etc.
Onions are a good source of folic acid, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C. Onions also have anti-carcinogenic properties which help in the prevention of lung cancer and bronchial constriction due to allergy. Onion is also said to prevent and combat infection in the lungs and can reduce bronchial spasms during a bout of asthma.
Apples are believed to be one of the healthiest fruits and rightly so as they contain antioxidant quercetin which helps in fighting diseases of the lungs and in protecting the lungs from the harmful effects of cigarettes and air pollution. Apart from this, they are also a rich source of Vitamin C which boosts the immune system and keeps the lungs healthy. Also, the khellin flavanoid is said to clear up the air passage and aid easy breathing. Eating an apple every day can help in cleansing and purifying the lungs thus making the lungs healthier in the process. Apples are a great fruit for those who have quit smoking and want their lungs to heal from the damage done by cigarette smoking.
The antioxidant punicalagin present in pomegranates is thrice times more beneficial than any other antioxidant. This is the reason why the fruit is considered to be an alternative cure for lung cancer. The punicic acid which is found in pomegranates helps in clearing the mucus in the throat, chest, and lungs and provides relief from cough.
Foods That Are Bad for Your Lungs
Below mentioned are some foods that you should completely avoid if you want to keep your lungs healthy.
- Dairy products
- Fried foods like French fries, fried chicken, samosa, chips, pakoras, etc.
- Fizzy drinks like sodas, coke, beer, wine
- Foods that can cause acid reflux like coffee, spice, or tomato ketchup
- Crab, lobster and prawns
Lungs let you breathe, they let you live. Hence, it is needless to say that you take good care of them. Quit smoking (i.e., if you smoke) by practising breathing exercises like pranayama and yoga. Also, drink a lot of water to clear the lungs of toxins. And for better blood flow in the lungs, eat foods which will keep your lungs healthy and clean and also combat all kinds of pulmonary and respiratory diseases along with lung cancer.