natural respiratory remedies

natural respiratory remedies

Having a respiratory condition like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, or emphysema, can significantly impact your quality of life and impact your loved ones as well. 

Conventional treatments, like medication and surgery, are key components of improving the outcome of respiratory conditions, but many patients also benefit from incorporating natural respiratory remedies into their management plan. 

#1: Using Chest Physiotherapy to Remove Mucus

The first natural method to improve your lung health is chest physiotherapy. Chest physiotherapy is often performed by a physical or respiratory therapist and uses different exercises, like postural drainage, to remove mucus from the airways and improve breathing. You might also hear it called “respiratory or cardio-thoracic physiotherapy.”

Postural drainage is a great way to remove mucus from the lungs, and can be achieved a number of ways, including:

  1. Percussion, during which the physical therapist “pounds” or “claps” over the chest wall area to physically break up fluids and mucus in the lungs.
  2. Controlled coughing, or stimulating a cough, to help remove unwanted mucus from the body.
  3. Deep breathing, which encourages mucus to move around to the necessary area. Plus, like controlled coughing, it can also stimulate coughing to help mucus exit the airways.

#2: Consume Herbs and Spices for Your Lungs 

Did you know that certain herbs and spices can help reduce inflammation? Herbs and spices are often referred to as “nature’s medicine” for a reason. By incorporating these herbs into your diet, you can improve your respiratory health. 

The most effective anti-inflammatory herbs and spices include:

  • Turmeric, which has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Cinnamon, known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.
  • Ginger, which helps reduce airway inflammation and improve overall lung function.
  • Garlic, which helps combat respiratory infections.
  • Onion, rich in antioxidants to help reduce lung inflammation.
  • Chili pepper and cayenne pepper, which both contain capsaicin helping clear mucus from the airways.
  • Thyme and oregano, known for their anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Alfalfa, which reduces allergies and improves lung function.

#3: Sit in a Steam Room

Using a steam room can be highly beneficial for people with respiratory conditions. Steam therapy can be particularly helpful for those with asthma, bronchitis, and sinusitis. Sitting in a steam room has been shown to benefit the cardiovascular system, particularly in older people.

A 2012 study found that the warm, moist air helps to loosen mucus and clear the airways, making it easier to breathe and increasing circulation by dilating the small blood vessels or capillaries. The increase in circulation allows blood to flow more easily and transport oxygen around the body. 

#4. Get to Know These Essential Oils 

There are some essential oils that can support your respiratory health by reducing inflammation, relieving congestion, and making it easier to breathe overall. Some of the most beneficial essential oils for your lung health include:

  • Eucalyptus oil, which is known for its ability to clear nasal congestion.
  • Peppermint oil, which contains menthol, which helps open airways and ease breathing.
  • Lavender oil, which provides relaxation and can help reduce stress-induced breathing difficulties.

#5. Breathing Exercises

For many, breathing is natural and easy. You breathe in and out effortlessly, with your diaphragm carrying the heaviest load (about 80 percent of the work) to fill your lungs with the gasses your body needs and expelling the waste gasses out. 

However, when you suffer from a lung disease or condition, stale air builds up in your lungs and leaves less room for the diaphragm to contract and bring in fresh oxygen. You might be surprised to learn that this affects more than just your lungs. If your diaphragm isn’t working to its full capacity, your body will compensate by using other muscles in your neck, back and chest for breathing. 

Of course, these muscles weren’t intended to do the diaphragm’s job, so this causes lower oxygen levels and less energy for exercise and activity—but breathing exercises can help get the diaphragm back in working order, improve your lung function and make your respiratory system work more efficiently. 

Techniques such as diaphragmatic breathing, pursed-lip breathing, and deep breathing exercises help increase lung capacity and reduce shortness of breath. These exercises are especially beneficial for individuals with COPD, asthma, and other chronic respiratory conditions.

#6. Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

One of the most important natural respiratory remedies is paying attention to your air quality. While it may be near impossible to improve your outdoor air quality on your own, maintaining good indoor air quality is a great way to manage respiratory conditions.

Take these steps to improve your air quality indoors:

  • Use air purifiers to remove allergens and pollutants.
  • Keep humidity levels balanced to prevent the growth of mold and dust mites.
  • Regularly clean and ventilate living spaces to reduce the presence of dust and other irritants.

#7: Change Your Lifestyle for Your Lungs 

Sometimes, poor choices when we are young affect our lungs decades later, but it’s never too late to change your lifestyle and improve your outcome. Adopting healthy lifestyle habits at any age can have a significant impact on respiratory health. 

Focus on:

  • Eating a balanced diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins to support your overall health.
  • Avoiding smoking and vaping, as tobacco smoke is a major irritant and can make respiratory conditions worse.
  • Staying physically active to improve your lung capacity as well as your overall respiratory function.

Michigan Instruments is Dedicated to Your Respiratory Health 

Managing respiratory conditions naturally involves a combination of traditional treatments and complementary therapies. By incorporating methods like chest physiotherapy, herbal remedies, steam therapy, lifestyle changes, essential oils, breathing exercises, and improving indoor air quality, you can achieve better respiratory health and a better quality of life.

Michigan Instruments is dedicated to lung health, providing facilities worldwide with lung simulators that more realistically represent the human pulmonary system. These devices replicate hundreds of lung conditions, delivering precise measurements and data to enhance testing, research, and training.

For more information contact us today or request a quote.