For anyone who has asthma or has ever experienced difficulty breathing, they know how frightening the experience is. With an increase of the population developing asthma, doctors have been trying to better understand what causes asthma as well as remedies to help alleviate the symptoms.
With medications and regular doctor visits, controlling asthma isn’t all too difficult but it doesn’t hurt in knowing any additional steps we can take to help lessen these symptoms naturally. Studies suggest that, when consumed, ginger works as an asthma controller, but is it really true?
Asthma is a respiratory condition that makes it difficult to breathe. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute explains that for people who have asthma, the airways become “inflamed […and] the inflammation makes the airways swollen and very sensitive.” When the airways swell, it causes the muscles around the airways to “tighten [which] narrow the airways, causing less air to flow into the lungs,” making it difficult to breathe. Asthma can occur for numerous reasons, and symptoms can sometimes go away on their own; however, more often than not, asthma is a chronic condition that requires a doctor’s careful monitoring and prescribed medications. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute reminds us that “asthma has no cure. Even when you feel fine, you still have the disease and it can flare up at any time,” therefore, the key to living with asthma is learning how to manage and control the symptoms.
Thankfully, due to medicine, most people with asthma are able to live normally. Sticking to a doctor’s prescribed recommendations are important in order to keep symptoms under control, but let’s see if nature can further give our respiratory track a boost. Ginger is commonly known for its healing powers when it comes to fighting nausea, however, research suggests it may be able to combat asthma as well. According to Fox News, a study published in the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology looked at “the chemical components present in ginger […combined…] with traditional asthma medicine, found the age-old remedy may help reduce tightening of muscles around breathing passages.”
It was found that, when eaten, ginger helped to alleviate the symptoms that are associated with asthma. Fox News explains that the study was performed in a laboratory and not in humans; […however,…added] to growing evidence from other studies in mice that also found that ginger might reduce inflammation and swelling in respiratory passages.” Additionally, a natural remedies website, Home Remedies for Life, states that “ginger has certain components such as gingerols, shogaols and zingerones that act as anti – inflammatory and analgesic properties which are similar to Non – Steroidal Anti – Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) that effectively gives relief from the asthma and its symptoms,” which helps to lessen symptoms.
Verdict: Fact. Although more research needs to be done on this topic, it is believed that ginger—when used with prescribed medication—can help lessen the symptoms of asthma. One way to use ginger as an asthma remedy is to “cut small pieces [of ginger] then add a little salt to it and stir well. Consume this salt mixed ginger to get relief from asthma attacks […] or you can simply sprinkle some ginger pieces” over your regularly consumed foods to add extra ginger to your diet, Home Remedies for Life explains. Speak with your doctor to see if ginger is the added remedy you need to help lessen your asthma symptoms.
For more Head & Heart features, check out our articles here.