Air pollution is a universal threat to people. It occurs when harmful gases, dust or smoke enters into the atmosphere and makes it difficult for living beings to survive as the air becomes contaminated. It is a serious issue which poses significant health risks. Air pollution can lead to several diseases like asthma, pregnancy and birth complications and other respiratory illness. Every time you go outside, you may inhale harmful chemicals. Unfortunately, you cannot hold your breath. But do not worry as there are certain precautionary measures which can safeguard you against air pollution.
Health expert Luke Coutinho, “Breathing polluted air tends to irritate and inflame inner linings of our respiratory tract, leading to mucous production as our body’s defense mechanism. While mucus is needed by the human body and immunity to protect us, too much of it is a problem and leads to sinus headaches, chest congestion, stuffy nose, snoring, wheezing and asthmatic symptoms.”
Luke Coutinho suggests top 6 ways to decongest your lungs:
1. Eliminate certain foods:
Foods play an important role in the overall health of a person. Your dietary changes can have a significant impact on your health. There are certain foods that trigger mucous production. These foods are dairy products, gluten, corn, soya, fried foods, refined oils, sugar, eggs and alcohol. When the air quality is bad you should avoid eating these foods. Also, avoid eating junk and processed food.
2. Breathing exercises:
Breathing exercises can help keep away the toxic effects of air pollutants. However, outdoor exercises should be avoided. Yoga exercises if practised indoors will be of great help. A deep breathing exercise like Pranayam is recommended on a regular basis. Therefore, you should practise breathing exercises like Kapalbhati, Bhastrika, Anulom-Vilom.
3. Jal neeti:
Jal Neti is a technique that was used by yogis to prevent chronic diseases and most importantly to use the breath well for their yogic practices without any blockages. If you practise Jal Neti regularly it can help maintain the nasal hygiene by removing the dirt and bacteria which gets trapped along with the mucus in the nostrils. But make sure you do this under a trained professional.
4. Steam inhalations:
Steam can be an effective natural remedy for people who have cold and flu, sinus or puffy nose. In order to beat the air pollution you can take steam with a few drops of eucalyptus oil. It will help relax the air passages and help your body remove the harmful particulate substances. For this you need to take hot boiling water. Add a few drops of eucalyptus oil into it. Try to inhale the warm steam. Also, make sure that you cover your face with a towel or a piece of cloth.
5. Healthy foods:
Foods like onion, ginger, garlic, turmeric, fenugreek, raw honey, cardamom, ajwain and cayenne pepper can help you protect from air pollution. Add these foods in your diet can help you when the air quality is poor. Also, it is always best to eat food cooked at home.
6. Castor oil pack:
Castor oil packs help detoxify the liver naturally. As an added benefit, it supports uterine and ovarian health, improve lymphatic circulation, and reduce inflammation.
Moreover, it strengthens the immune system and increases the flow of lymph throughout the body, speeding the removal of harmful toxins from cells and the body. It also aids in digestion and increases the liver activity.