When it comes to health, what you introduce into your body and environment holds great importance. This holds for lung health as well. With increased levels of air and water pollution surrounding us, impaired lung capacity is a growing concern. In such a scenario, avoiding foods that could further contribute to the deterioration of your lungs is necessary. Avoiding foods that can compromise lung health can also help maintain heart health.
Increased intake of highly processed meats like bacon, sausages, hot dogs, and other deli meats has long been linked to compromised lung health. According to numerous research results, daily intake of processed forms of meat can impair lung function, increasing the risk of developing and triggering conditions like COPD. A set of research also found the rehospitalization rate to be higher in COPD patients that continued using processed meat. The problem is the high salt content and the subsequent water retention these foods can cause.
Sugars that are not naturally present in food and have been added as a measure of taste enhancement or preservation are added sugars. Most often, it is in the form of refined sugar or other syrups. Commonly occurring foods with added sugars include cereals, granola, cakes, flavored yogurts, and more. It is important to read the nutrition label on all packaged foods to avoid lung-harming ingredients like excess salts and sugars.
Carbonated beverages are loaded with carbon dioxide. Constant addition of these drinks to a patient’s meals and refreshments can cause bloating, gas, and even stomach ache. This discomfort can often be linked to increased difficulty in breathing and overall discomfort for people with pre-existing lung conditions. The added space that the patient’s hyperinflated condition takes up in the case of COPD and asthma patients can cause physical discomfort and make breathing a chore.
Foods that are heavy on oils and come packed with trans fats are an absolute no for good lung health. Donuts, fries, and chicken wings might leave watering mouths in their wake but also trigger asthma, COPD, and other equally complicated lung health scare episodes. The high saturated fat content in these foods can give rise to abdominal gas, bloating, and indigestion which can trigger breathing issues and discomfort. Incorporating baked alternatives of your favorite fried food into your meals is a better lung-friendly option.