You probably have a list of foods to avoid because they can worsen your asthma symptoms. Fortunately, there are foods you should eat that will help to alleviate your asthma.

Foods for Asthma Benefits

There's no magic recipe to reverse this chronic condition. Nonetheless, in recent years studies have revealed that certain foods do have important properties that can prevent respiratory flare-ups. And many of these foods bring other health benefits too.

Mediterranean Style Diet

When exploring foods to help reduce your asthma symptoms, look no further than the "Mediterranean Diet." In fact, a study published in the April 2007 Thorax Journal presented the results of a wide scale study of children living on the Greek island of Crete and revealed that the young participants' healthful style of eating, which emphasizes eating lots of fruits, vegetables, and fish, while avoiding foods high in saturated fats, seems to lower the incidence of asthma. The same protective effect is believed to occur in adults as well, with fruits, vegetables, and fish reducing the prevalence of asthma and wheezing symptoms.

Five Foods for Asthma Relief

To get similar benefits, incorporate these five "super" foods into your daily diet:

1.)    Fish. Salmon, fish oil, tuna, and mackerel are all rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid and therefore offer important anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce airway constriction. (Walnuts, canola oil, hemp seeds, and flax seeds are alternatives that bring similar benefits.)

2.)    Fruit. Apples and other fruits that are high in flavonoids and vitamin C can help keep your lungs healthy and counteract free radicals (which can lead to aging and disease).  Other good fruit choices include strawberries, peaches, and papayas.

3.)    Spinach. The real benefit comes from the magnesium it contains, which can help prevent muscle spasms from occurring in the respiratory tract and can also have an antihistamine effect. (Almonds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, beans, and tofu also contain magnesium.)

4.)    Onions. These have prostaglandins that help relax your airways. They also have flavonoids that can reduce inflammation and help prevent allergies. And, they also contain amino acid to support the body's immunity.

5.)    Milk. You might worry that dairy products can worsen your asthma. Contrary to popular belief, the latest research shows that dairy products don't cause excessive mucus production, but actually help prevent asthma symptoms. Exactly why is still being studied, but the fatty acids contained in milk may be the key to controlling asthma.


Thorax Journal