Exercise and weight control provide benefits for asthma treatment

Asthma is treated with drugs. However, exercise, a healthy diet and sufficient sleep can also treat asthma and reduce its symptoms.

1. Exercise increases fitness and reduces symptoms

Regular exercise increases fitness, and this applies to everyone. Asthmatics who increase their level of fitness will also reduce their sensitivity to the exertion that makes the airways constrict and this will reduce the symptoms of asthma. Forms of exercise that involve breathing control, such as yoga, help to reduce the symptoms of many asthmatics.

2. A healthy diet keeps weight in check

Weight management and asthma management go hand in hand. Fatty tissue produces several kinds of inflammation transmitters, which may worsen the symptoms of the disease. Weight loss reduces the need for an overweight asthmatic to take medication.

3. Special diets don’t help; alcohol in moderation

Special diets are of no use to asthmatics. However, foods which trigger allergy symptoms should be avoided on an individual basis. Alcohol worsens symptoms for some asthmatics. Asthmatics are generally able to drink alcohol in moderation.

4. Sleeping shows that asthma is under control

Waking and coughing at night and tiredness in the morning are signs that asthma treatment is not balanced and medication should be increased.

5. Keep indoor air clean

There is no need for asthmatics to live in sterile surroundings, but it is a good idea to keep moveable objects in drawers and behind closed doors, to choose materials that are easy to keep clean and dust free, and to clean regularly.

Expert advice provided by Terttu Harju, Specialist in Pulmonary Diseases.