Written by Connie Rogers
According to the Department of Respiratory Diseases, asthma is a disorder of the respiratory tract associated with chronic inflammation. Asthma is one of the most common chronic diseases, with an estimated 300 million cases worldwide. (1)
“In the United States alone, more than 25 million people are known to have asthma. About 7 million of these people are children.”(2) Asthma is the leading chronic disease diagnosed in children, (3) with 95% being under the age of sixteen.
Prescribed Medications have serious side effects
There is frightening new research which points to psychotic side effects in prescribed asthma medications. Some of these effects include: hallucinations, depression, insomnia, impaired growth in children, decreased bone mineral density, cataracts,(1) irritability, restlessness, suicidal behavior and tremor.(6) Singulair (Montelukast) is a medication approved for the chronic treatment of asthma for adults and children 6 months of age and older.
Montelukast is linked to serious psychotic episodes (Neuropsychiatric Disorders) in children,(4) and I’ve found it should never be used for the treatment of an acute asthmatic attack.(5) I can’t stress this enough, this is a dangerous medication. As parents, we need to become aware that Singulair damages our children's brains and bodies with horrific side effects including suicide. (7)
What if you’re using corticosteroids? “There was a significant positive correlation of inhaled corticosteroids for asthma and voice problems as well as acid regurgitation.”(8) Reslizumab is a drug used every four weeks by intravenous infusion for 18 year olds and older. Side effects include, mouth and throat pain and possible anaphylaxis.(9)
Reports show billions in revenue. According to Express Scripts’ 2015 Drug Trend Report Asthma is the 8th most expensive drug class. In this period between July 2011 and June 2012, the asthma drug Singulair generated around 4.9 billion in revenues. Adair generated 4.6 billion. (10)
Pay attention to Allergies, Inflammation & IBS
It seems no one is addressing-toxic exposures that are on the rise and can cause harm in children and adults. The air we breathe is critical for life and it has been compromised in our homes, work environment and our schools. Toxic exposures for people with or without asthma include artificial scents and pesticides.
One reason we can honestly say asthma has risen in the last decade is an increase exposure to pesticides (Round up Ready™ glyphosate) on our foods.(11) This alone can lead to increased food allergies.
Food allergies are listed as one of the common causes of asthma. This is because over 60% of our immune system is found in our digestive tract. (12) To shed more light on this subject, it’s imperative to note 75% of asthmatic children identified food allergies as a cause. Allergies can begin by daily ingesting poor quality foods and/or GMO products. These include tomatoes, beets, dairy, corn, soy, cheese, farmed fish and pork products.
Asthma is an inflammation disorder. When there is an unhealthy gut environment and not enough good gut bacteria, there is an increased risk for inflammatory disorders. Why? According to the Weizmann Institute of science, bacteria is equal to the amount of cells we have in our body.(13) When we’re fighting inflammation in our cells we must build good gut microbiome in order to feel better.
Interestingly enough, a poor diet, insulin resistance, an abundance of free radicals and lack of exercise are responsible for depleted oxygen levels in the body and have problematic ties with symptoms of asthma.
My daughter was four years old when she was diagnosed with asthma twenty-six years ago. I concentrated on giving her probiotic rich foods, more fruits and vegetables and less grains.
“Irritable Bowel Syndrome and the autonomic nervous system play an important role in the pathogenesis of asthma. The autonomic nervous system regulates the mucous secretion, tonicity of bronchial smooth muscles, blood flow, micro-vascular permeability, and functions of inflammatory cells”(14) Feeling better requires taking good care of the digestive system.
The first step to wellness is to eliminate foods from the diet that create allergies or sensitivities. rBGH Dairy happens to be one of the top allergens out there. According to Dr. Tom O’Bryan, if you have sensitivities to grains, you will also be sensitive to the cow that was fed those grains.
However, you probably don’t think you or your child are allergic to dairy. Keep in mind an allergy can first show up as congestion, a runny nose, a cough, headaches and so on. Poor gut microbiome can be a missing link that is being ignored today. Good gut bacteria is important for preventing and reversing asthma, inflammation and allergies.
5 Asthma Triggers
Common everyday foods such as chocolate, chicken eggs, coffee, store bought orange juice, white and wheat flour, fried foods, red meat and sugar can also be the sweet beginnings of allergies, inflammation and asthma. Inflammatory foods such as these can be linked with Leaky Gut which can cause an inflamed intestinal lining. The results of this inflammatory process can affect your waistline with belly fat and your liver with high triglycerides.
Another hidden connection to asthma, no one talks about, is the role the liver plays keeping the lungs clear. With a fatty or toxic liver we may suffer from weight gain and high triglycerides.
When we improve our lifestyle by adding in high quality foods, excess bile is purged from the liver and gallbladder and is sent to the intestines for elimination. Stress, toxic emotions and high anxiety disorders can cause hypersensitivity asthma episodes.
Dust mites from carpets, mattresses, and stuffed animals, can increase allergies and asthma. Warm humid weather is where they thrive year round. Toxic scents can cause poor lung health as well as disrupted hormones, triggering asthma. This is because the lungs influence all hormones.
These scents include candles, cigarettes, air fresheners, perfumes, laundry detergents, dryer sheets, and most household cleaners. With improved breathing and clearing out these inflammatory triggers the body is better equipped to regain health.
8 Tips to reduce inflammation and heal yourself from asthma in a more holistic fashion
Eat better, choose wiser, and build good gut microbiome! Junk foods are nutritionally void, deplete minerals in the body, are toxic, impair digestion, and increase inflammation. First bite size step is to eliminate: cheese, yogurt, dairy, corn, wheat, caffeine and sugar need to be eliminated. A healthy diet includes a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes and pure filtered water. (fluoride and chlorine free water) It helps to drink warm filtered water throughout the day. For clear lungs you can juice 8 carrots and a thumb size of fresh ginger root together. Carrots (15) and ginger root have many positive properties to relieve symptoms of asthma. In fact ginger root is famous for digestive health, clearing asthma and relieving inflammation. (16)
If your child has been on multiply antibiotics it’s time to add in a probiotic and fermented foods daily. Practice meditation and deep breathing exercises to strengthen your lungs and breathe.
If you or your child are overweight, make time for delicious homemade meals that include more green leafy veggies. Maintaining a healthy weight is a necessary step toward respiratory wellness. (17) Eat smaller meals and chew your food well. Cytokines mediate and control immune and inflammatory responses. (18) and can cause inflammation between cells.
According to Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, T helper type 2 cells orchestrate the asthmatic inflammation through the secretion of a series of cytokines. (19) Turmeric (curcumin) regulates the expression of inflammatory enzymes, cytokines, adhesion molecules, and cell survival proteins” anti-proliferative. (20) Turmeric fights inflammation and has been noted to replace fourteen different medications. (21)
Work out a plan with your health coach that helps you to exercise comfortably. Exercise can help increase oxygen levels. You may be able to begin with walks on the beach, simple hiking, swimming or biking. Turn off the TV and stay active as a family.
Far infrared sauna therapy boosts the body’s ability to detoxify, leading to significant and lasting health benefits. Organic eucalyptus essential oil has been effective for asthma symptoms and decongestion. (21a)
8 Tips Pertinent for Achieving Balance
If you smoke cigarettes and drink alcohol-Quit! Ditch the toxic floor and window cleaning products in your house. (22) Use 1 cup of white vinegar, 7 cups of water and 1/2 cup baking soda. Throw away your air-fresheners. Diffuse organic lemon essential oil instead. (23)
Remover bleach from your bathrooms. Purchase 35 % food grade peroxide and dilute with water down to 3%. You can wash walls and mold with this solution. Avoid the toxic laundry soaps and dryer sheets. Use a mixture of white vinegar and non-toxic scent-free detergents to clean cloths. Choose organic foods and produce without pesticides.
Next, question over the counter medications that can keep you tired and stressed and interfere with other medications. These include aspirin and NSAIDs that may increase risk for asthmatic conditions. Ask your doctor.
Take a more holistic approach to your medicine cabinet and add in organic essential oils and purchase a diffuser for your home. (23) If you commit for 60 days, you will notice a big difference in the way you breathe and feel!
- 1- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16412623
- 2- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMHT0015659/
- 3- http://managedhealthcareexecutive.modernmedicine.com/managed-healthcare-executive/news/asthma-drug-pipeline-prevalence-costs-increase
- 4- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/26620206/
- 5- http://www.medicinenet.com/montelukast/article.htm
- 6- http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/840302?src=smo_tw_aimm?src=sttwit
- 7- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25196099?dopt=Abstract
- 8- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15331115
- 9- http://www.rxlist.com/cinqair-side-effects-drug-center.htm
- 10- https://www.statista.com/statistics/242506/revenues-of-top-asthma-drugs-in-the-us-2011-2012/
- 11- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4195794/
- 12- http://www1.cbn.com/health/the-danger-of-hidden-food-allergies
- 13- http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2016/01/06/036103
- 14- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2841807/
- 15- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1974844/
- 16- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3665023/
- 17- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23278876
- 18- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16166805
- 19- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11477111
- 20- Goel A, Kunnumakkara AB, Aggarwal BB. Curcumin as "Curecumin": from kitchen to clinic. Biochem Pharmacol. 2008;75(4):787-809.see http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17900536
- 21- https://skinhealthfromwithin.com/change-your-medicine-cabinet-into-a-healthy-space/
- 21a- https://skinhealthfromwithin.com/2016/10/02/organic-eucalyptus-essential-oil/
- 22- https://skinhealthfromwithin.com/2014/02/17/how-important-is-it-to-read-labels/
- 23- http://bitesizepieces.net/essential-oils-medicine-cabinet/