The feeling of breathlessness is a symptom of asthma. It’s not like the inability to catch your breath after a run – it is accompanied by coughing and wheezing or the feeling of tightness in the chest. To help reduce the frequency and intensity of asthma attacks we have Dr. Anjali Sharma, Senior Consultant in Naturopathy, Action Group of Hospitals, New Delhi, India giving us six natural remedies to ease an asthma episode.

Dr. Sharma warns that you cannot treat asthma with these natural remedies. They will only help control the symptoms. She says, “Asthma cannot be completely cured but with naturopathy the frequency of attacks and intensity of attacks can be reduced. Patients can find out what foods and other things such as dander, mites, insects, pollen, etc. they are allergic to, so that those things can be avoided.”

1) Figs: Wash and soak three dried figs in water overnight. Eat the figs and drink the water on an empty stomach. Figs alleviate breathing difficulties and drain phlegm.

2) Herbal decoction:  Prepare a decoction of tulsi or Ocimum tenuiflorum, ginger, black pepper, cinnamon, honey or jaggery, and drink it on an empty stomach or two hours after a meal. Do not prepare and store the decoction. Drink up to four cups a day.

3) Eucalyptus oil: It is a natural decongestant. Put a few drops on a paper towel and keep it by your head while you sleep. You can also put two drops in a pot of boiling water and inhale the steam. You can also leave the vessel open and let the steam waft through the room.

4) Honey: Mix half a teaspoon of cinnamon powder with one teaspoon of honey and ingest it before bed. It will drain phlegm from your throat and let you sleep better.

5) Lemon: Drink lemon juice regularly to reduce attacks. Most patients have vitamin C deficiency; drinking lemon juice should quell the deficiency.

6) Drink warm water during attacks: Controlling asthma is a major boost to overall health. It gives us the liberty to live life to the fullest, without hesitation. Lifestyle changes also help control the symptoms of asthma.

“Switch to a vegetarian diet as far as possible. Meat and dairy products can aggravate your asthma. Get enough exercise; it helps open up your airway. Don’t over-exert yourself; take breaks when you feel the tightness of exercise-induced asthma. Taking breaks can help stop an asthma attack. Practice deep breathing techniques, breathing exercises and pranayam daily”, says Dr. Sharma.

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