Alternative Therapies For Asthma

Submitted by Kevin Pederson on February 23, 2012

Ayurveda and Yoga emphasize four factors in treating asthma: Ahar (food), Vihar (recreation), Vichar (thought processes) and Achar (relationships). Ideally asthmatics should more follow the laws of nature. Air sun and water are great therapeutic agents. Natural methods like steam inhalation, especially from water boiled with caraway seeds (ajwain), works as a wonderful bronchodilator.

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Periodic gargling with warm water, hot water fomentation on the chest, back and neck, and sunbathing in not too direct sunlight are also highly beneficial to asthmatics.

Fasting once in a while, an occasional enema, plenty of fresh air and a dry climate go a long way in alleviating, if not actually curing asthma. In the same way, mustard oil mixed with camphor if massaged over the back and chest helps soothe an asthmatic attack.


It loosens up accumulated phlegm and eases breathing.

Another effective remedy for asthma is turmeric, particularly on account of its antibiotic qualities. A teaspoonful of turmeric powder administered with a glass of milk two or three times daily, works wonders, especially if taken on an empty stomach. Garlic is another excellent stimulant. Everyday the asthmatic should be given one or two crushed garlic cloves boiled in a cup of milk. If given in the early stages, this alone suffices in curing the disease. Piping hot ginger tea with minced garlic cloves also help control the situation. It should ideally be had both in the morning and evening.

Brisk walks and slow jogging in parks or in the countryside are also advised for asthmatics. They help ventilate the lungs. This again should not be overdone and definitely not to the point of exhaustion. Above all, asthmatics should avoid dusty places, exposure to cold, foods that they are sensitive to, worries, stress, anxieties and tensions.

General tips to cope with Asthma

  1. Take up swimming as the exercise of alternative. The increased moisture tends to lessen the chance of bronchial spasms. Starting slowly with walks or cycling you can safely move to swimming to increase stamina.
  2. Drink plenty of water or other liquids, especially on an empty stomach, preferably first thing in the morning. With rapid breathing resulting from exercises, there is a tendency to feel dehydrated.
  3. Stop smoking immediately (if you do) or hanging around in smoky rooms.
  4. Learn abdominal or diaphragmatic breathing rather than thoracic. Correct breathing entails distending the belly in inhalations, and sucking it in when exhaling. Never raise your chest and shoulders while breathing.
  5. Relax and try to breathe slower, if ever you start wheezing or feel shortness of breath. This will automatically reduce your body’s demand for oxygen. If this happens while exercising, slow down or stop immediately!
  6. A bottle or jar of honey held under an asthmatic’s nose for inhalation helps him breathe easier and more deeply. Honey contains a relatively high blend of alcohols and ethereal oils. Their vapors help soothe the asthma patient, especially during a seizure.
  7. Honey can also be taken with milk or water. It has the inherent capacity to dilute accumulated mucous and facilitate easier elimination from the respiratory tract.

Often, it has been noticed that a person can alter ones condition by merely changing ones attitude. Like, for instance, interpersonal relationships can be a source of relaxation or tension, depending upon how one copes with them. One has to learn to detect sensitive areas and modify ones behavior, accordingly.

Recent studies have revealed that asthma traces its roots to traumatic childhood experiences. Deconditioning those feelings by someone just lending a patient ear could offer the patient many avenues of overcoming feelings of helplessness. They should never be made to feel they are ill. Most importantly, they have to learn to say a firm and affirmative ‘No’ to certain conditions, without suppressing their emotions or feeling their personality in any way threatened.

With slight modifications, asthmatics too can lead full, wholesome lives.

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