Asthma is an ancient Greek word meaning 'panting or shortdrawn breath'. It is an allergic condition resulting from the reaction of the body to one or more allergens, and is the most troublesome of respiratory diseases. An asthma patient gets frequent attacks of breathlessness, in between which he may even be completely normal.
Gasping for breath
Patients suffering from asthma appear to be gasping for breath. Actually, they have more difficulty in breathing out than breathing in, and this is caused by spasms or sudden involuntary muscular contractions of the smaller air passages in the lungs.
Allergy caused by weather conditions
Asthma is caused by a variety of factors. It may be due to an allergy caused by weather conditions, food, drugs, perfumes, and other irritants. Allergies to dust are the most common.
Asthma treatment using Honey
Honey is one of the most common home remedies for asthma. It is said that if a jug of honey is held under the nose of an asthma patient and he inhales the air that comes into contact with it, he starts breathing easier and deeper.
Asthma treatment using Figs
Among fruits, figs have proved very valuable in asthma. They give comfort to the patient by draining off the phlegm. Three or four dry figs should be cleaned thoroughly with warm water and soaked overnight.
Asthma treatment using Lemon
Lemon is another fruit found beneficial in the treatment of asthma. The juice of one lemon, diluted in a glass of water and taken with meals, will bring good results
Asthma treatment using Indian Gooseberry
Indian gooseberry has also proved valuable in asthma. Five grams of gooseberry mixed with one tablespoon of honey forms an effective medicinal tonic for the treatment of this disease. It should be taken every morning
Asthma treatment using Bitter Gourd Roots
The roots of the bitter gourd plant have been used in folk medicine for asthma since ancient times. A teaspoon of the root paste, mixed with an equal amount of honey or juice of the tulsi leaves, given once every night for a month, acts as an excellent medicine for this disease.
Asthma treatment using Drumstick Leaves
A soup prepared from drumstick leaves, and taken once daily, has been found beneficial in the treatment of asthma. This soup is prepared by adding a handful of leaves to 180ml of water and boiling it for five minutes. After being allowed to cool, a little salt, pepper, and lime juice may be added to this soup.
Asthma treatment using Ginger
A teaspoon of fresh ginger juice, mixed with a cup of fenugreek decoction and honey to taste, acts as an excellent expectorant in cases of asthma. The decoction of fenugreek can be made by mixing one tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in a cupful of water. This remedy should be taken once in the morning and once in the evening.
Asthma treatment using Garlic
Garlic is another effective home remedy for asthma. Ten garlic cloves, boiled in 30 ml of milk, make an excellent medicine for the early stages of asthma. This mixture should he taken once daily by the patient. Steaming ginger tea with two minced garlic cloves in it, can also help to keep the problem under control, and should be taken in the morning and evening.
Asthma treatment using Bishop's Weed
The herb bishop's weed has been found valuable in asthma. Half a teaspoon of bishop's weed should be mixed in a glass of buttermilk and taken twice daily. It is an effective remedy for relieving difficult expectoration caused by dried-up phlegm. A hot poultice of the seeds should be used for dry fomentation to the chest twice daily. The. patient can also inhale steam twice a day from boiling water mixed with ajwain. It will dilate the bronchial passages.
Asthma treatment using Safflower
Safflower seeds are beneficial in the treatment of bronchial asthma. Half a teaspoon of powder of the dry seeds, mixed with a tablespoon of honey, can be taken once or twice a day in treating this disease. This acts as an expectorant and reduces the spasms by liquefying the tenacious sputum. An infusion of five grams of flowers mixed with one tablespoon of honey, taken once daily, is also useful in this disease.
Diet for Asthma
carbohydrates, fats and proteins
The patient should avoid common dietetic errors. Ideally, his diet should contain a limited quantity of carbohydrates, fats and proteins which are 'acid-forming' foods, and a liberal quantity of alkali-forming foods consisting of fresh fruits, green vegetables, sprouted seeds, and grains. The patient should avoid foods which tend to produce phlegm, such as rice, sugar, lentils, and curds. He should also avoid fried and other difficult to-digest foods, strong tea, coffee, alcoholic beverages, condiments pickles, sauces and all refined and processed foods.
Other Suggestions for Asthma
Fasting and exercises
The patient should also follow the other laws of nature. Air, sun, and water are great healing agents. Regular fasting once a week, an occasional enema, breathing exercises, fresh air, a dry climate, light exercises, and correct posture go a long way in treating the disease.