Asthma, Exercise, and Antioxidants

Asthma, Exercise, and Antioxidants

Exercise is a crucial component of any healthy lifestyle. Those who suffer from asthma, however, must be very careful in how they approach staying physically active. For asthmatics, the increased breath rate that goes along with physical exercise can stimulate inflammation in the airways, leading to mild to severe asthma attacks.

While the risk of attack depends on both the type of exercise and the severity of a person’s asthma, many asthmatics find that the disease limits their ability to be as active as they would like.

To prevent and relieve exercise-related attacks, those with asthma often turn to prescription medication. While this form of treatment can be extremely helpful, recent research is revealing another preventative treatment: antioxidants.

What are Antioxidants?

An antioxidant is not a thing in itself, but rather a property held by certain nutritional compounds that combat the process of oxidation within the body—a process that restructures atomic particles within the cells, creating unstable particles called free radicals. To neutralize themselves, free radicals steal electrons from stable atoms, starting a chain reaction of atomic instability that can damage the body on a cellular level. Oxidation and free radical damage have been linked to a wide variety of health problems, including heart disease, eye diseases, and cancer.

Antioxidant nutrients intercept the chain reaction of oxidative damage by stabilizing free radicals. Plant foods—especially fruits and vegetables, but also nuts, grains, seeds, and legumes—contain high concentrations of nutrients with antioxidant properties.

Antioxidants and Asthma

So how are antioxidants related to asthma and exercise?

The exact reason is not fully known at this point, but extensive research shows a measurable connection between antioxidant nutrient intake and the frequency and severity of asthmatic episodes.

One study published in Allergy, a peer-reviewed medical journal, reported that asthmatic patients who took a 30 mg dose of lycopene—an antioxidant nutrient abundantly found in tomatoes and watermelon—for one week experienced 55% less exercise-induced asthma than their placebo-administered counterparts.

Another study published by the Institute of Public Health in Cambridge, UK found that a sampling of patients suffering from asthma ate less fruits and vegetables and displayed lower levels of antioxidants vitamin C and manganese in their systems than an equally sized sample of non-asthmatics.

These studies are only two examples of a large body of scientific research supporting the link between increased antioxidant intake and decreased symptoms of asthma. And while a diet high in fruits and vegetables is good for all, those suffering from asthma can especially benefit from their antioxidant power.

How to up the Ante(oxidant)

Generally speaking, foods that are naturally dark or bright in color contain a high concentration and a wide variety of antioxidant nutrients. Dark leafy greens like spinach and kale, beets, blackberries, blueberries, artichokes, tomatoes, and walnuts are among the foods most celebrated for their antioxidant content.

According to the Allergy study, it only took 1 week of increased antioxidant intake to reduce the frequency of exercise-induced asthma. Start your day off with this tasty NutriBlast for one week to see if you experience the same!

Published by NutriLiving Logo

Comment by Wiggins2
November 02, 2015
As a Registered Nurse and Certified Diabetes Educator I totally agree with you. I am a avid exerciser and suddenly 3 months ago had exercised induced asthma attacks, who knew. I most always eat good along with shakes for breakfast but I am changing the contents of my shakes. Inhalers are not working very well and I had a notion to go to this site and it has been a blessing. Thank you for your blog.
Comment by mdvs42
January 31, 2013
Smile! Your are in the top 2%! OK, I admit I made that number up, however I would think that I am not that far off. So 2% of what? I think we are in the top 2% of people in this country that get our daily requirement of Fruits and veggies. After all how many people do you really know that can honestly tell you they always start their day off with a breakfast of Kale or Broccoli? I have people turn as green as my drink when I tell them what I have for breakfast. So what is the hang up about having something green for breakfast? I just don’t get that. Especially since its so good for you. I think personally believe its a mind set people have they have to have those old staples of breads, eggs, cheese,bacon and they think that’s a quality breakfast. And I think people in general are afraid to try anything new or different. I start my morning off with my NutriBullet blast everday and love it! My fiancee loves the fact that I am taking such good care of myself and says I'll probably live to be 100, but to get her to take a sip of my drink, forget it! oh yea, she's one of “those special people” you know “I cant eat anything when I first get up in the morning” much less green kale or broccoli are you kidding! People you cant sleep for 8 hrs, then go another 4-5 hrs with out giving your body fuel. I am not a doctor or dietician or nutritionist, its just common sense think about it. And No a cup or a pot of coffee just don’t cut it until lunch. And you have to wonder why so many people are having so many health issues today? Sure, I could come down tomorrow with something drastic, but at least I can say I tried. Food for thought: I work from home and yes keep the TV on in the background for news, its come to my attention, after watching endless commercials that promise to remedy every known ailment to mankind from head to toe , by using the latest and greatest fad pill on the market .Have you ever stopped to wonder why there are so many advertisements out there promising to cure all these symptoms? Because those are all the symptoms and ailments that’s troubling society today. Why? And its a Cash Cow for the pharmaceutical industry, granted they do some good, but have you noticed all the side effects? OMG, your better of with your ailment! The bottom line to me is this, And again I am not a Doctor and don’t have any formal nutritional training, I cant help but believe its all related to DIET! What's your thoughts?
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