Eating Fruits and Vegetables Prevents Asthma

In a recent post I mentioned that, years ago, I was always getting sick: cold, cough, bronchitis, etc… that was my pattern 3-4 times a year; I needed antibiotics every time. But for the last 20 years, it’s been completely different – I’ve needed antibiotics only 3 times in those 20 years; I haven’t had bronchitis once and my formerly chronic asthma is virtually gone.

I was always grateful for the invention of the Ventolin inhaler in the late 60’s – it allowed me to enjoy sports and live life to the full. But I was concerned about the long-term effects of daily use. So needing them very little in the past 20 years is a huge blessing.

Why? What has made the difference? Fruits and Vegetables! You see I would not eat my veggies, especially the greens; now I eat them all and lots of them.

Research now shows that eating lots of fruit and vegetables protects against asthma. That is my experience, exactly.

Published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, ab Australian study divided adults into two groups. One ate a low-antioxidant diet, while the other ate a high-antioxidant diet, including five servings of vegetables and two fruit portions each day for two weeks. At the end of the testing period, people in the high-antioxidant group had better lung function and less breathing problems than those in the other group.

Orlando Conference Overview-80The researchers concluded: “Improvements were evident only after increased fruit and vegetable intake, which suggests that whole-food interventions are most effective.” Earlier studies have found that entire populations with less prevalence of asthma tend to eat diets high in fruits and vegetables.

Another study found that eating a Mediterranean diet — one low in saturated fats and high in fruits, vegetables and fish — is associated with a reduced occurrence of asthma in populations of children. Both raw and cooked vegetables have been shown to provide beneficial nutrients.

As part of its tips for dealing with asthma, the Mayo Clinic recommends eating more fruits and vegetables, because “they’re a good source of antioxidants such as beta carotene and vitamins C and E, which may help reduce lung swelling and irritation (inflammation) caused by cell-damaging chemicals known as free radicals.”

In the past, other than making sure that patients avoid food triggers, overall dietary recommendations have typically not been part of asthma treatment plans. But hopefully, this new research will change that for the better.

20131022-180921.jpg“There’s a lot of data to show that fruits and vegetables are good for your weight and your heart and lots of other things. I think that’s a good general recommendation but we really haven’t used that specifically for patients with asthma, up to this point,” says Dr. Riedl. “Maybe that should be a piece of the lifestyle changes that are recommended for people with asthma.”

In the Daily Mail ( 07/01/2013 ) Dr. Benjamin Marsland from the University of Lausanne, Switzerland said that over the past few decades , asthma and allergies have increased in developing countries, while consumption of  fruits and vegetables has declined.

The greatest change in my wellness and in my eating habits came about as a direct result of starting Juice Plus+ more than 20 years ago. I have never looked back since, except to thank God that I am a different man today. Juice Plus+ metabolically reprogrammed me to love veggies, so now I get them in my Juice Plus+ and off my plate!