We often think about our weight, our heart and our liver, kidneys and other organs in terms of dietary health. How often, however, do you consider what the best foods to improve lung health might be? If you said, “Never,” then welcome to my personal club. Before researching this article, I can honestly say I had never once considered that the food choices I make could affect the function or performance of my lungs.
We all know there are certain issues that can hinder lung health, such as smoking or vaping. In fact, one look at the following video should be enough to break anyone’s smoking habit:
While it’s easy to see the simulated damaging effects that smoking has on human lungs, it’s not so easy to see how food choices affect the same body parts.
Best foods to improve lung health include beets
If your goal is to optimize lung function, you’ll want to incorporate beets and the greens from beets into your diet. Beets are a nitrate-rich food. Nitrates help improve oxygen uptake and also relax blood vessels and lower blood pressure. This is all good news for your lungs.
Peppers are among best foods to improve lung function
I love peppers. We eat a lot of raw peppers in our house, especially during summer when we have fresh garden produce on hand. Peppers are loaded with vitamin C, which is an antioxidant, which is SUPER good for you health.
If you’re a smoker, health experts recommend you up your vitamin C intake by at least 35 mg per day. I am not a health expert. However, I recommend quitting your smoking habit AND increasing your intake of vitamin C. Do know that eating one sweet red pepper provides more than 165% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C?
Other foods that are good for your lungs
Tomatoes, apples and blueberries are also lung-boosting foods. (I’m excited about this because I love all of these foods!) Anthocyanins protect lung tissue from oxidative damage. Blueberries are loaded with anthocyanins.
Studies have shown that eating blueberries a couple times per week can significantly slow the rate at which your lungs’ function may decline.
Tomatoes should be counted among best foods to improve lung function and performance because they are rich in lycopene. If you or someone you love has asthma or COPD, consider adding more tomatoes in the diet. Tomato products help reduce inflammation of the airway. The following list includes additional lung-friendly foods:
- Olive oil
- Brazil nuts
- Turmeric (which is more of a spice than a food, but still…)
Check out this article to learn more about the best foods to improve lung health. In addition to eating, breathing is so important to overall health, and many of us breath incorrectly without even knowing it. Does your belly or your chest rise and fall when you breathe? Learn more about the proper ways to breathe, here.
God provides the best foods to improve our health
I’m always humbled and amazed at the way God provides for us. There is a food for everything. Whether you want to improve liver function, kidney function, eyesight or lung health, there is a natural food to help you. God is so awesome like that.
As I mentioned at the start of this post, until writing this article, I had never really considered how my food choices may or may not help improve the health of my lungs. I’m happy to admit, however, that I not only love every food on the lists I’ve shared but eat them as a part of my regular diet as well. If you like to learn new things, try making your own yogurt or fermenting cabbage to become delicious sauerkraut, which, in turn, will help you improve lung health!