Supercharge your lungs to stop COPD and pneumonia
September 24, 2012
Volume 2 | Issue 75
Most people know that their heart is a muscle. But few people think about the muscular makeup of their lungs. Breathing air in and out takes constant muscle action. And the better you take care of these muscles, the stronger your lungs will be. Fortunately, there’s something very simple you can do every day to keep your lungs in tip-top shape – and it’s not just exercise.
Yes, exercising every day is great for your lungs. Just like any other muscle, stressing them a little will keep them strong.
But there’s more to good muscle health than strength. You need to keep the cells of your muscles healthy as well. And researchers in two studies recently found that certain foods – one in particular – that really boost the health of the cells in your lungs.
These foods are apples, onions, white grapefruit, and tomatoes. Of these, the most important one for your muscles is apples. This shouldn’t surprise you. A few months ago, I told you about the amazing muscle-boosting power of apples. But, with the cold winter months right around the corner, it’s great to know these foods can help your lungs stay healthy too. No one wants to suffer through bronchitis or pneumonia this winter. And if you have COPD, this information is vital.
In the first study, out of Nottingham University, researchers asked 2,633 adults to complete a questionnaire about their wheezing, asthma, or other lung complaints. They wanted to find out what type of diet these participants ate. Then the researchers gave them a test to measure their lung capacity.
The participants that had the greatest lung capacity all ate a hefty amount of apples or tomatoes. Those with the strongest lungs ate at least five apples a week or tomatoes every other day. And those who ate the most apples had the least wheezing problems.
Another study, this one out of Hawaii, found that eating apples and onions reduces your risk of lung cancer. These researchers looked at the smoking history and food intake of 582 patients with lung cancer and 582 people without lung cancer. The researchers found that those who ate the most apples, onions, and white grapefruit had a 40-50% decreased risk in lung cancer.
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The researchers believe the nutrient quercetin is what gives these foods their lung-boosting and protecting capabilities. But they weren’t sure. Whatever it is, it’s clear that these foods can help you breathe easier.
So eat plenty of onions, tomatoes, white grapefruit, and especially apples to supercharge your lungs. If your lungs are relatively healthy, including them in your diet will help keep your lungs strong and disease free.
But if you already have COPD or think your lungs could use some extra help, then you may not get enough help from diet alone. In these cases, you might want to try a supplement like AppleBoost. AppleBoost packs the power of the apple peel (where most of the fruit’s nutrients are) into a small capsule. This is the product I’ve told you about that is great for your muscles. Now we know it’s also a powerful supplement for your lungs.
Your Insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.
Le Marchand L, Murphy S, Hankin J, Wilkens L, Kolonel L: Intake of flavonoids and lung cancer. J Natl Canc Inst 2000, 92:154-160.