As a part of our natural lung cleanse protocol, we highly recommend to consider the food you choose; you want to choose the best foods for lung health, and also avoid foods that are bad for lungs.
When it comes to foods for lung function and respiratory health, the research data is quite remarkable. Certain foods have the ability to naturally cleanse, detox and clean your lungs. The diet you eat can improve your breathing, repair and heal lung damage, and decrease your risk to develop lung disease.
In this post, we focused on common foods for lung health you can easily get in your local store. You don’t have to eat all of them of course. It is best to choose the ones you enjoy the most that agree with your body and taste buds.
For the complete lung cleansing protocol, including the best drinks, juices, recipes, and lung cleansing herbs, see: Lung cleanse.
Foods For Lung Health In This Post
- Cruciferous vegetables.
Best Foods For Lung Health
Here are the best foods for lung health:
Apples contain a variety of phytochemicals, including quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, all of which are well known for their many health benefits.
Multiple studies suggest that quercetin, a major flavonoid in apples may play a key role in lungs and respiratory health. According to the evidence, quercetin has the ability to relieve asthma symptoms , and can also suppress growth of lung cancer cells [2,3].
Additional studies have specifically linked apple consumption with a reduced risk for asthma, lung cancer and better lung function . One Australian study that observed the dietary habits of 1600 adults, found that those who consumed apples and pears had lower risk of asthma and bronchial hypersensitivity. The researchers didn’t see this connection with other fruits and vegetables . For this reason, many experts consider apples as the best foods for lung health.
Anthocyanins, the blue, red, or purple pigments of berries, are well known for their health benefits. According to the research data, the anthocyanins in berries may benefit cardiovascular disorders, reduce oxidative stress, decrease inflammatory responses, improve neuronal and cognitive brain functions, and protect DNA integrity .
The benefits of berries don’t stop here. One study evaluated the connection between the food choices of 839 participants to their lung function. The study found that the participants that consumed more anthocyanins, showed less age-related decline in their lung function .
Other studies also supported these findings. The research data suggests that anthocyanins have a positive effect on lung health, with a natural ability to inhibit airway inflammation, prevent the risk to develop asthma , and suppress growth of some types of lung cancer. .
Pomegranate has a long history of traditional use as food and medicine, with many of its potential health benefits supported by modern science. A large number of studies found that pomegranate can help prevent or treat various disease risk factors including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, oxidative stress, hyperglycemia, and inflammatory activities .
Specifically to lung health, research data suggests that pomegranate may offer an effective natural alternative to prevent and treat lung cancer . Animal studies found that pomegranate juice can decrease the incidence of lung cancer, secondary to cigarette smoke, and may also prevent the formation of lung nodules. [12, 13]. Additional studies also concluded that the antioxidant activity of pomegranate juice was able to reduce acute lung injury .
Cruciferous vegetables contain unique nutrients and phytochemicals that are suggested by the medical community to induce detoxification, stimulate the immune system and prevent oxidative stress. .
Specifically to lung cleansing, multiple studies report a connection between cruciferous vegetables intake and lung cancer risk. People who eat more cruciferous vegetables have a lower risk to develop lung cancer. Furthermore, according to one study, this protective effect may also include people who smoke. .
As you can see above, the scientific community considers cruciferous vegetables among the best foods for lung health. Many people, however, still don’t enjoy the way cruciferous vegetables taste.
One easy way to still get cruciferous vegetables into your diet, is to make juices or smoothies recipes. Out of the cruciferous vegetables, we find Kale as the best fit for juices and recipes.
A good example is our lung cleansing juice recipe, which does include kale.
A famous study (the Nurses’ Health Study) investigated the relation between cigarette smoking, dietary habits and lung cancer incidence among women for 16 years. The study found that women who ate five or more carrots per week had a lower risk, compared to women who never ate carrots .
From a nutritional perspective, carrots are one of the best food sources of vitamin A. One medium carrot provides over 300% of the daily recommended dietary allowance (RDA). For this reason, many nutrition experts recommend to eat at least one carrot a day.
Perhaps one of the best foods for lung health, pineapple has been used as part of traditional folk medicine since ancient times. Bromelain, enzyme found in pineapple, is well known for its natural ability to reduce swelling and inflammation.
Multiple studies found that bromelain was able to reduce lung inflammation, decrease airway sensitivity to irritants, and improve sinus infection. A study that had sinusitis patients take bromelain, concluded that bromelain was able to resolve their breathing difficulties and inflammation. .
Multiple studies all over the world continually report the benefits of garlic use in order to treat several lung diseases, including common cold, bronchitis, tuberculosis, inflammatory disorders of the lungs and others .
A study that had chronic smokers consume 4 grams of raw garlic (2 cloves) per day, found that garlic significantly improved their lung function (Pulmonary function tests). The researchers noted that :
Garlic may improve the clearance of mucus from the airways, hence can help relax the airways, and improve airflow into the lungs.
A chinese study that evaluated 1,424 lung cancer patients and 4,543 healthy individuals, found that those who ate raw garlic 2 times or more per week, had lower risk to develop lung cancer. For this reason, the study concluded that garlic may serve as a chemopreventive agent for lung cancer .
Ginger has a long history of traditional use as a natural remedy to treat respiratory illnesses. Modern science was able to validate the traditional use of ginger in respiratory disorders and suggests that ginger can reduce allergic airway inflammation .
The research data also found that certain active components of ginger have a natural ability to suppress allergic reactions, and therefore may help to treat and prevent allergic diseases. .
Additional studies proposed ginger as a possible therapeutic application in allergic asthma. According to the data, -gingerol, a major constituent of ginger, can prevent immune responses that lead to airway inflammation. .
Some research data also suggests that 6-Shogaol, an active constituent of ginger, may be useful as a chemopreventive agent against certain types of lung cancer. .
Dating back nearly 4000 years ago, turmeric also has a very long history of medicinal use. Ayurvedic medicine practitioners often use turmeric to treat various respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies, bronchial hyperreactivity, runny nose, cough, and sinusitis .
Most of the benefits and medicinal use of turmeric, are due to its natural anti-inflammatory activity. One study found that curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, improved the airway obstruction in patients of Bronchial Asthma. For this reason, the study suggested that curcumin may offer an effective and safe natural add-on therapy to treat bronchial asthma..
Additional evidence, suggested that curcumin might also alleviate airway inflammation in asthma , and may be helpful to prevent the development and deterioration of the allergic airway inflammation .
Animals studies also suggested that curcumin may also have anti-tumor effects in lung cancer .
Honey is commonly used in folk medicine as a natural way to treat airway inflammation, cough, reduce and prevent asthma related symptoms. .
According to research data, a single dose of honey can help to reduce mucus secretion and reduce cough in children. Further studies also suggested that honey may help to relieve inflammation and irritation in men as well .
Consuming raw local honey is a well known home remedy for seasonal allergies many people swear by. The evidence on this topic, however, may not be as strong since most studies didn’t use local and raw honey. One study was able to show that honey can improve the symptoms of seasonal allergies (allergic, hay fever) .
A few studies found a link between low fiber intake to reduced measures of lung function. The researchers believe that a diet rich in fiber-containing foods may play a role in improving lung health. .
One study investigated this connection and observed the eating habits of 11,897 US participants. The findings of the study also confirmed that dietary fiber is independently associated with better lung function. Furthermore, the findings also suggest that enough fiber intake may also reduce the prevalence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). .
For this reason, and also for general health, we highly recommend to meet your daily fiber requirements. Not surprisingly, all the best foods for lung health are also high in fiber.