Research has pointed to several ways to significantly lower your or your family’s asthma risk:
- Eat plenty of fruits & vegetables high in Vitamin C.
- Unless absolutely necessary, do not administer antibiotics to children under six months of age (European Respiratory Society Conference, Vienna, 09/03).
- Children under the age of three should consume full-cream milk and butter daily (PIAMA Birth Cohort Study 2003; 58:567-72).
- Stay out of indoor swimming pools; their chemicals can make lungs more susceptible to asthma (Occup & Environ Med 2003; 60:385-94).
- Avoid hormone replacement therapy when you reach menopause (Arch Int Med 2/23/04).
- Don’t smoke; don’t let family members be exposed to secondhand smoke. According to Robert Fink, MD “[T]he hospitalization rate for asthma in children is 50% higher if there is a smoker in the household.”
- Open windows at home to clear the house of indoor air pollutants.
- Avoid products, such as hairspray, that come in pressurized cans.
- Practice stress relief, and transmit this information to your children.
“[E]motionally induced’ asthma is a real entity,” says Dr. Fink. “It has been shown that crying or laughing can elicit a histamine response”– that is, a release of the chemical responsible for allergic reactions.