Dr. Richard Hagmeyer: Reversing Asthma Naturally

15 09 2011

Asthma is one of the most common inflammatory conditions of the lung. It is characterized by variable and recurring symptoms, bronchospasm and reversible airflow obstructions. Reverse asthma with natural lifestyle interventions modulate the immune system and de-inflame the body. 

Asthma is more of an immune imbalance than it is a lung disease. When the immune system gets triggered it causes an inflammatory reaction to occur within the lung epithelial tissue. The bronchial tubes swell with fluid and mucous in order to isolate the insulting allergen. This swelling irritates the airways even further which results in an increased level of sensitivity.

Common environmental allergens that trigger the inflammatory immune response include mold, mites, dust, dander, chemicals & pollutants. It is critical to keep the home clean by using natural cleaning products with grapefruit seed extract which is a potent anti-fungal that keeps mold down. Dust and vacuum the house regularly and use high quality air filters.  

The most common food allergens include processed and refined foods of all kinds. Food additives and preservatives like  sodium bisulfite, potassium metabisulfite, and sulfur dioxide have caused severe attacks in asthmatics. Pasteurized dairy products, gluten containing grains, soy products, & peanuts are also highly inflammatory and mucous forming foods.    

Asthmatics typically have a dysbiotic gut that is damaged and leaks out undigested food particles. This is at least partially responsible for the heightened immune sensitivity.  Stabilizing the gut with high quality fermented foods such as red cabbage sauerkraut, kimchee, coconut kefir, raw milk kefir and amasai is very important.  Apple Cider vinegar is very useful for providing useful enzymes and reducing mucous formation. Drink a glass of clean water with 1-2 Tsp of ACV throughout the day to reduce mucous and provide beneficial enzymes to help reduce inflammation.    

An anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle are critical for full recovery from these conditions.
Anti-inflammatory foods help to modulate the immune system and give it a more accurate pair of eyes so as to not over-inflame when stimulated. To effectively de-inflame it is key to completely avoiding man-made foods, sugars, and food allergens as listed above. The long chain omega 3 fatty acids EPA and DHA powerfully de-inflame the body by restoring natural balance to the lipid wall of the cell membrane.  

Other great anti-inflammatory foods include coconut products, berries, and non-denatured, whey protein from grass-fed cows and goats. This protein source is also loaded with L- glutamine and enhances cellular glutathione stores which are both necessary for rebuilding the gut and de-inflaming the body.

Red onions and garlic contain sulfur compounds and the anti-oxidant flavonoid quercetin. These components have been shown to inhibit an inflammatory enzyme associated with asthma and other inflammatory disorders. Anti-inflammatory herbs such as turmeric, ginger, boswellia, cinnamon, rosemary, & oregano among others should be used as much as possible.

Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to increased rates of asthma. In over 60 years of research, scientists have found vitamin D deficiency linked to lower lung functions, increased airway reactivity and worse asthmatic control. Vitamin D plays a strong role in modulating the inflammatory immune response by blocking pro-inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin 10. Asthma typically worsens in the winter and early spring when vitamin D is at its lowest.

Birth trauma and early childhood trauma to the upper cervical spine is highly associated with asthmatic symptoms. Chiropractic care focusing on the upper cervical region is particularly helpful for improving immunity and enhancing respiration. Chiropractic adjustments help to restore normal motion to the spine and optimal function to the neurological system. This modulates the immune system and reduces inflammation throughout the body.

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