Asthma and an Active Lifestyle 

 June 21, 2010

By  Dr. John Vilkelis


It can often be very difficult to live an active lifestyle while suffering from asthma, but it’s not impossible.

According to WebMD, common symptoms of asthma are: coughing (especially at night); wheezing; shortness of breath; chest tightness, pain, or pressure.   People with asthma will experience these symptoms to varying severity, at different times and sometimes different symptoms at different attacks.  Some people feel completely normal between flare ups or attacks and others have asthma symptoms all the time that just vary in intensity.  Others still only have symptoms after exercise or when exposed to certain allergens.

Many asthma sufferers are lead active lives by properly managing their asthma.  It can involve protection against allergen and environmental toxin exposure, proper diet, proper medication and some alternative therapies.

Diet can play an important role in managing asthma.  Eating a diet high in fruits and vegatables, omega 3 fatty acids and in general a whole food vs. processed food diet will help reduce symptoms and attacks.  Avoiding foods that have high salt content, artificial coloring, preservatives and artificial sweeteners is a good place to start.  According to Parents Magazine milk actually increases airflow and the basic diet rules above work well to help reduce asthma symptoms.

The alternatives therapies to treat asthma mentioned above are acupuncture, breathing exercises and chiropractic adjustments.

Acupuncture works by following a 3000 year old chart of the body’s energy meridians or lines.  The theory being that the health issue is being caused by a blockage or imbalance of a particular meridian and by inserting very thin needles into the proper points on these meridians the energy is released.

According to The Mayo Clinic, breathing exercises have been shown to help reduce the symptoms and the amount of medication required to manage asthmatic attacks.  The Mayo Clinic further states there are three different kinds of breathing exercises recommended: The Buteyko breathing technique (hyperventilation); The Papworth method (diaphragmatic); Yoga breathing or pranayama (deep, slow steady breaths).

According to some case studies from the International Chiropractors Association Council on Pediatrics, children have shown a dramatic improvement of asthma followed chiropractic management.  There are several small studies that suggest that chiropractic reduces asthma symptoms and reliance on medication in children and some of them can be seen at the Chiropractic Research Organization’s website.  My own clinical experience has been varied with different asthma patients.  When the patients are adjusted to remove the subluxation believed to be the cause of the asthma, some patients experience small improvements in symptoms and medication reliance while other patients experience a complete remission of symptoms and reliance on medication.

If you think you have asthma do not put off seeking professional help.  Asthma can be a life threatening disease and it can get worse without warning.

Finally, following some of the tips above will allow you to lead a more active lifestyle if you suffer from asthma.  Each parameter may improve your symptoms a little here, a little there until there is a greater cumulative improvement.

Please let me know what you think about this article and feel free to share your experiences.

Dr. John Vilkelis

Dr. Vilkelis has been in private practice for over 27 years. He has a reputation for truly caring for his patients and goes the extra mile to make sure people get the help they need. He accepts patients of all ages and is eager to help you get well and stay healthy. Give him a call today at (914) 618-4330.

Dr. John G. Vilkelis

related posts:

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}
Skip to content