Apricot_and_cross_sectionDid you make it through the winter without catching some kind of respiratory infection? So few of us do, given the incredible endurance and omnipresence of some of the superbugs out there. Aside from the lingering cough that lasts for weeks after a bout of influenza or a bad cold, there is also the fact that in the winter, many of us spend an extensive amount of time indoors, breathing canned air that is full of dust and other small particulates that get trapped in our lungs.

If your lungs still feel weak, wheezy and you are a bit out of breath, then you might want to consider rehabilitating them by eating the following foods, which are known for supporting lung health.

Apples. It might seem a bit too simple, but the wide spectrum of vitamins, minerals, flavonoids and antioxidants in apples can help you get rid of a chronic cough. A Dutch study found that apples were beneficial for COPD and other lung and heart related problems because they contain flavenols that mediate the daily damage done by the disease

Apricots. Apricots are incredibly high in Vitamin A and several different types of beta-carotenes which can help rehabilitate the mucous membranes in your lungs an keep them healthy. The high amount of potassium in apricots can also help regulate your body fluids and prevent bacterial infections from taking over your lungs. Apricots also contain lutein, lycopene and Xeaanthin, which help to prevent lung cancer.

Dark colored berries. Dark colored berries such as blueberries, lingonberries, black currants, blackberries and acai are the absolute champions when it comes to helping your damaged respiratory system back in order because they are so high in Vitamin C and all kinds of antioxidants that can help your body overcome any infection. For best results eat the berries raw, as is or add them to smoothies or a salad. Cooked berries tend to turn to sugar and are not as rich in healing antioxidants.

Garlic. If you have a lingering bit of infection left in your lungs, then you need to eat chopped raw garlic. Garlic is a natural antibiotic that fights both bacterial and viral infections. It also reduces inflammation in the lungs, which can help reduce the risk of lung cancer. Make sure you eat it raw because when you cook garlic, you destroy a compound called allicin, which is necessary for healing. Chop it or slice it and add it raw to salads, dips and dressings

Ginger. Ginger is a natural cleanser and purgative, that helps you to cough up phlegm. It is also a potent inflammatory and fighter of infections. The best way to take ginger is raw, chopped and added to juices or smoothies. Raw ginger juice, with a bit of honey and lemon, is a powerful remedy for lingering colds. Ginger helps to remove particulates from lung tissues and improves circulation to the lungs.

Grapefruit. Grapefruit, in fresh and raw or juiced form, contains high amounts of Vitamin C and it is also high in potassium, which helps create an environment in your lung tissue that is inhospitable to viruses and bacteria. Grapefruit is also a great choice of juice if environmental carcinogens have affected your lungs

Turmeric. Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory that dries up any remaining phlegm in your lungs. Turmeric contains the active ingredient curcumin, which is one of nature’s most potent healers. It is often used to cure bronchitis because it has both anti-bacterial and anti-viral qualities. Turmeric can be added to curries, and it can also be added to hot milk or nut milk with a bit of honey. You can take therapeutic doses of turmeric in capsule form, up to 900 mg a day.

Of course, eating all of the beneficial foods in the world is not going to help someone who continues to smoke cigarettes. It also helps to do some aerobic exercise daily, to help increase your lung capacity.

For more information about improving your lung capacity, naturally boosting your immunity or to book a consultation about anti-aging, naturopathic testing, weight loss programs or any health issue you may be experiencing, visit the Pinewood Natural Healthcare Centre website that has a list of full services and products at www.pinewoodhealth or all our Toronto Office at  (416)-656- 8100.  We also have an office in Pickering, Ontario at (905)-427-0057. You can also email us at info@pinewoodhealth.ca and we would be happy to answer any question that you have about our holistic health services.


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