Love your Lungs : Facts, Fitness and Food
How much do we know about the humble organ Lungs. We rarely acknowledge the hard work done by this organ. The truth is, if we fail to receive oxygen for a total of 4 minutes our brain cells begins to die and it can be fatal….. High time we take this organ seriously.
The right lung is a little wider but shorter than left lung as it need to leave space for Liver
A man’s lungs can hold more air than a woman’s
Even healthy people without any chronic lung disease uses only 70 percent of the possible lung capacity
Adults typically takes around 20,000 breaths a day with 15 to 20 breaths a minute
The average time an adult can hold his or her breath is between 30 to 60 seconds
There are about 600 million alveoli in lungs. If we stretched all of them out, they would be about the size of a tennis court
A newborn normally breathes about 40 times each minute
The lungs are the only organs in the human body to float on water
Air has 21 percent oxygen and the body only needs 5 percent of it
It’s possible to live with even one lungs. Many people around the world live with just one lung
In India, breathing problem is more prevalent in females compared to males
200 different viruses are out there which can cause common cold and irritate lungs
Breathing and respiration is not the same…..
Respiration is different from breathing. Breathing is the process of inhaling oxygen and exhaling carbon dioxide done by the nose. Whereas Respiration is the process of breaking down oxygen so that it can be used by body cells for creating energy. So if we sum up breathing is a part of respiration.
Lungs and Diseases
Diseases and conditions that affect our lungs can be broadly divided into two – Infectious diseases like influenza, bacterial pneumonia, enterovirus respiratory virus; and chronic diseases, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Lung cancer.
How to Keep your Lungs in Shape
Keep Pollutants and Dusts Away
Exposure to pollutants and dusts in the air can damage lungs and can accelerate aging. Though when we are young and strong, we can easily resist these toxins, as we get older we lose resistance and become more vulnerable to infections and disease.
- Try not to go outside during peak times or wear mask
- Take all possible safety precautions if you are working in construction, mining or waste management industry
- Dust your furniture and home at least once a week
- Avoid synthetic air fresheners and candles which can further irritate lungs
- Opt for organic cleaning products
Exercise for Lungs
Everyday activities we perform only uses lungs to 50% of its full capacity. So it’s essential to challenge the lungs with more intense activity. Include some simple breathing techniques as part of your exercise regime. Best thing is these exercises can be used by people who are experiencing lung problems like asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis, as well as healthy individuals
- Diaphragmatic breathing or Belly Breathing
- Simple deep breathing
- Pursed Lip Breathing
- Rib Cage Breathing
Smoking is the worst thing one can do to their lungs and body. Cigarette smoke is a noxious mix of more than 4800 chemicals, 69 of which have been linked to cancer. Smoking up the risk of lung cancer and also it causes COPD. Inhaling somebody else’s cigarette smoke is just as bad as smoking.
Foods That May Help You Breathe Better
Start with water. Aim for 8 glasses of water every day. Water is very essential for healthy lungs. Dry lungs are prone to irritation. Water helps to flush out toxins from body.
Apples are rich in phenolic acids and flavonoids and can help in reducing inflammation in the air passageways, a common feature of both asthma and wheezing. A British study found that children who drank apple juice once a day cut their likelihood of developing a wheezing problem in half compared to kids who drank it less often. Another study found that women who ate apples regularly during their pregnancy were less likely to have children who suffer from asthma or wheezing.
Caffeine present in coffee is a mild bronchodilator. It can alleviate asthma symptoms. Coffee can open up tight airways in asthmatics and reduces respiratory muscle fatigue.
Green tea is loaded with antioxidants that can calm the body, decrease inflammation, and promote better healing. That would mean it can slow the release of histamine and other inflammatory chemicals in the body that can cause allergy symptoms. The hot water is also great for soothing throat and can protect lungs from irritation by flushing out mucous membranes.
Walnuts are great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Eating a handful of walnuts daily can help to fight off asthma and other respiratory ailments.
Start loving your lungs today……………..