Breathing issues are a common symptom of numerous different medical issues (i.e., COPD and asthma). These can range in overall severity between mild annoyances and severe risk factors. Breathing problems typically manifest through issues involving the lungs and respiratory passages. However, breathing problems can also result as a secondary issue from seemingly unrelated medical issues.
These issues can be as severe as heart failure. If you suffer from breathing issues, it’s wise to manage your symptoms by avoiding these foods:
1. Excessive salt
The average person eats about 3,400 mg of salt per day. This is in contrast to the FDA’s recommendation that people limit their intake to something under 2,300 mg per day. The vast majority of people are continually taking in an excessive amount of salt. And this can result in issues related to water retention. As one might expect the severe water retention can in turn result in issues related to breathing. This is sometimes due to similar issues related to excessive weight gain. Heavier weight, even when due to water retention, can increase breathing difficulty. Excess salt also raises one’s blood pressure which adds additional strain on the heart. Heart issues can, in turn, impair one’s ability to breathe.
2. Cold cuts and deli meats
The exact mechanism of action behind cold cuts and respiratory issues is unknown. What is understood is that nitrates are often used as additives in cold cuts and similar meat products. It’s not known exactly how nitrates interfere with respiratory issues. However, there’s strong evidence that ingestion of nitrates is associated with increased risk of COPD admissions in hospitals.
3. Carbonated beverages
Carbonated beverages such as soda have a negative impact on respiratory issues for a number of different reasons. Many carbonated beverages are highly acidic and cause all of the associated problems one would expect. The empty calories in carbonated beverages also contribute to obesity. High calorie liquids are metabolised faster than food. This means that one can take in a tremendous amount of calories without noticing. The resulting weight gain can cause bloating and pressure on one’s lungs and throat. Additionally the caffeine in many carbonated beverages can result in dehydration even while taking in liquid from the drink itself.
4. Dairy products
Dairy products provide another example of a food which worsens respiratory issues through an unknown biological chain. The exact relationship between dairy and breathing problems isn’t fully understood. But much of the problem is likely due to a component of dairy called casomorphin. When casomorphin is introduced into one’s digestive system it can increase mucus production in the intestines. A similar process seems to occur within some people’s lungs on exposure to dairy products. It’s made even more worrisome due to the fact that many respiratory issues are caused by an already excessive amount of mucus in the lungs. Increasing mucosal production past that already high level may result in vastly increased breathing problems.
5. Acidic foods and drinks
Acidic food and drinks can exacerbate conditions that cause breathing problems such as COPD and asthma. The underlying cause relates to the esophagus. This structure connects the throat and stomach. If the valve sealing the two systems isn’t properly sealed then it can result in stomach acid making its way through the esophagus. This can result in acid reflux disease or intermittent heartburn. These issues can in turn increase breathing issues associated with respiratory disorders.