8 Tips for Controlling Asthma Naturally - Modern Alternative Mama
AD

8 Tips for Controlling Asthma Naturally

guest December 27, 2011

 

8 Tips for Controlling Asthma Naturally

By Justyn Lang, Contributing Writer

My husband has had asthma since he was a child and was on different “maintenance” inhalers (aka, “steroids”) and albuterol for years. He was warned that not using these inhalers could cause horrible damage to his lungs. Not one doctor mentioned the risks and side effects of these powerful drugs. You can go to www.drugs.com to check out the side effects for yourself. The heart and central nervous system can have all kinds of crazy reactions, which is scary.

His asthma is allergy- and exercise-induced, so outdoor activities always required frequent puffs on his “rescue” inhaler. Whenever he used the albuterol, it was extremely difficult to stop. He would have rebound attacks for days, which either meant using more and more albuterol, or suffering through hours of horrible wheezing. To get through it, he would have to consume huge amounts of caffeine and sit (usually all night) in a steam-filled bathroom, just to be able to breathe.

Young woman using asthma inhaler.

Young woman using asthma inhaler.

8 Tips for Controlling Asthma Naturally

A few years ago, he decided to try to completely wean himself off these dangerous drugs. This was long before we knew anything about “real foods”, but I did know a bit about herbs. We had already had some success with large amounts of caffeine to get him through the initial attack from quitting the inhalers, but I hoped to find a healthier and more effective alternative.

Lobelia was my first discovery. Everything I read said it would help relax his chest and make breathing easier. I added some to a cup of tea… it did NOTHING. Completely worthless. We were so disappointed, but he made it through the initial withdrawal attack. After that, we just tried really hard to avoid any asthma triggers. Hmm. That would be exertion and the great outdoors. Hard things to avoid, so he wheezed a lot.

I continued to study herbs to treat other ailments, but I had pretty much given up on anything helping with asthma. Then, I stumbled upon one little sentence about lobelia that hadn’t been in any of the other books I’d read. “Do not heat.” Turns out, heat destroys the beneficial properties in lobelia. I had squirted the tincture into a hot cup of tea, which made it useless. I was so excited about this discovery that I redoubled my efforts to find ways to help my hubby. Here’s what we discovered over the last couple of years…

1. Half a dropper of lobelia tincture in a room-temperature cup of water works wonders!

Start out slowly and work your way up, though. Large amounts can induce vomiting, and everybody has a different threshold. Some people have great success applying it topically.

2. Inhaling clary sage essential oil opens up the respiratory tract and helps stop an attack.

It can be put in a diffuser, a bowl of steaming water, the floor of a shower, or even smelled straight from the bottle.

3. Magnesium

It is essential for muscles to properly relax. Due to depleted soil, many people are deficient in magnesium, so it is one of the very few supplements we take.

4. Cod Liver Oil

It is an excellent anti-inflammatory, which is helpful in reducing asthmatic tendencies.

5. Freeze-dried nettle

This is THE herb for reducing allergies. Taking it before being exposed to a known allergen can prevent an attack in the first place.

6. Turmeric

This is another safe and nutritious anti-inflammatory supplement. Ground turmeric can be taken in capsules, but you can also cook some delicious Indian food with lots of turmeric!

7. Eliminate Food Dyes

Asthma might be triggered by food additives, such as MSG or food colorings. These should be avoided for this, and many other reasons.

8. Eliminate Gluten (or Other Sensitive Foods)

Last December, our family went gluten-free for one month. During that time, my husband’s asthma completely disappeared. Although we now consume gluten again, we know that going gluten-free would be helpful if ever he is having a difficult time in the future. Consider food sensitivities as a possible cause. The GAPS diet might be worth trying, if herbal remedies aren’t enough for you.

Since switching to real foods last January, my husband seldom wheezes. I believe diet is more of a contributing factor than seasonal allergies or exercise. When he does have the occasional wheezing, the remedies above have proven to be even more effective than traditional drugs. He doesn’t have rebound attacks, and we aren’t risking his health by using these! The only “maintenance” we do is avoiding food additives as much as possible, though we do take the freeze-dried nettle quite often for allergies. It is highly nutritious and has no negative side-effects, so we’re okay with that.

Note from Kate: A recent study also showed that raw milk has a protective effect against asthma.

NOTE: If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, do not use the lobelia or clary sage without the supervision of a qualified medical professional. I’d suggest a naturopathic doctor, who may prescribe something more suitable for a pregnant woman.

Have you tried controlling asthma naturally?  What worked for you?

Confused about vaccines?

Get our FREE no-nonsense vaccine guide. Answer your questions with rational, fact-based information instead of fear.

This is the writings of:

guest
AD

36 Comments

  1. This is great information! I too have suffered from asthma since childhood and no longer use medications to manage it. Switching to real foods was an amazing step to fixing the problem, but I am always on the lookout for other remedies for the occasional flare-up. Thank you!!

    Reply

  2. I’m so glad to hear you were able to get off the meds, too! Good for you! I hope that some of these ideas are useful for you when you have a flare-up. Please come back and let us know if you get the “opportunity” to try any of them. 🙂

    Reply

  3. Thanks for the tips, my daughter is 12 and talked to an natural pathic Doctor and she can not take any of these meds you listed ,even though she is 12 and over 11o lbs. I SO want to get her off the meds, as she is on top doses of Advair and Zyrtec, Singular and Flonase. She was on 4 rounds of prednisone this winter, due to asthma attacks.. She has exercise induced asthma, weather change and when she gets a cold…Thinking of seeing and Naturopathic Doctor ..

    Reply

  4. Thanks for the comment, Keri! I think it would be a very good idea to see if you can find a naturopathic doctor who can help her slowly lower her doses of medication and help you find good herbal and natural alternatives. He or she could also help you to figure out whether any food sensitivities might be making it worse. Even if she doesn’t have an extreme allergic reaction to anything, several mild sensitivities combined could cause extreme symptoms, like hers. I hope you have great success! 🙂

    Reply

  5. Meducinal grade oregano, either just inhaled from bottle and/or taken in liquid form has helped me.

    Reply

  6. This past March, I had an allergic reaction at a restaurant to one of my foods (fresh guacamole) and since I had already been struggling with mild asthma from a cold the previous week, my reaction resulted in a paroxysmal cough where I just cough and cough and cough… (I don’t typically wheeze unless I am really bad….) A friend of mine was with me, and she also has asthma. She pulled out a bottle of peppermint oil and told me to sniff it and it would help. I figured it couldn’t hurt, so tried it…. my airway opened IMMEDIATELY… and I stopped coughing almost abruptly. I was shocked and amazed. She dropped me off and I felt a little tight and thought I would have to do an aerosol treatment, but then wondered if my peppermint extract would do the same…. and IT DID! So, now I carry peppermint oil with me everywhere…. it even helped my 12yo daughter when she had a cold and cough.

    Reply

  7. Hello! Are these all safe for children? I have a three year old who suffers coughing, sneezing and wheezing from seasonal allergies (or so I think that’s the cause). We do real foods, raw milk, high vitamin CLO but low on veggies- it’s a struggle!

    Reply

  8. I am an asthmatic and there are two things that have dramatically changed asthma in my life. Chiropractic (specifically a NUCCA chiropractor). I went from using controller meds twice a day along with Albuterol 4-8 times a week to no controller meds and Albuterol 2-3 times a month. The second is I use Byronia Alba 30X for my flare ups and use albuterol as a last resort. The Byronia Alba really helps so I don’t half to use my Albuterol so much. Also a breathe blend essential oil that has Eucalyptus oil can be benifical topical, inhaled and also in a bath. I am also considering a Gluten free diet as well as I am gluten intolerant but I haven’t made the jump yet.

    Reply

  9. I love information like this! Thank you! I’ve been using a chest salve made out of a mixture of EO’s. It has controlled my asthma & totally cured the bronchitis I was batterling!

    Reply

  10. Great post! Been reading a lot about different ways to get over my asthma. Thanks for the info here!

    Reply

  11. Hello, thank you so much for the info that you posted.Its really a great help how about in our country we don’t have lobelia do you know other herbs that has a powerful effect aside from the one you tried..I’m bing from Philippines..:-)

    Reply

  12. What about quercetin?

    Reply

  13. Thanks for the info. I had asthma as a child but grew out of it. It seems now though that I am growing back into it as I age. That is, when I get a cold or a flu I end up with frightening and exhausting coughing spells for months. My doctor says it is an asthmatic response to the virus. After a few months I end up taking antibiotics for a secondary infection. A doctor prescribed a prednisone inhaler which did work but I want to find natural methods. If anyone else knows more about this type of asthma I would really appreciate any information.

    Reply

  14. Kate I would like to know more about the various treatment you tried. The dose amounts & how to use each one. A little more clarity please

    Reply

  15. Give up dairy. It makes asthma much worse.

    Reply

  16. Peppermint oil in a necklace diffuser works wonders for me. I think because I can inhale the peppermint oil as I walk, it helps keep my asthma attacks at bay. I have exercise induced asthma and haven’t had an attack since trying the oil in the diffuser necklace

    Reply

  17. Hi am Ralph,for the last 40 years Ive been an asthmatic; until recently I stumble into something incredible. I recently started a regime of taking Quercetin and Bromelain for my asthma daily along with b-100 complex and NAC; and for wheezing I took 1tbsp of coconut oil. I kept a schedule. On 8/22/16 at 9am was the last time I took anything for my asthma, after making myself a green smoothie of kale, white swiss chard 1/2 piece of beet, two wedges of lemon, 1 tbsp of flaxseed and water in my nutriBullet, I no longer have any symptoms of asthma. Today is 8/24/16 still doing good.
    I continue to make myself more green smoothies of the same kind daily.

    Reply

  18. My son was extremely allergic to so much for years, causing asthma, trips to ER twice a month! Naturopathic dr told me to eliminate all chemicals from diet, natural foods only, and to add B complex, starting w/ one during every meal since he was so asthmatic, then tapering down to one a day. My son went the next year w ZERO asthma problems!(Until he decided that taking the capsule of B was too embarrassing. Then he got sick again)>

    Reply

  19. HI Kate, Freeze dried nettle ? Did not find that mentioned in any of your hot links…How much to take? How often? Nettle Leaf? Nettle seeds? Nettle root? Thanks for sharing….

    Reply

  20. Asthma is something people usually get after they are born. Which clearly indicates there are triggers. We are emotional creatures, most physical problems stem from emotional trauma
    through life. I just asked a client yesterday was there a trauma or sickness surrounding the start of his Asthma. Yes he said my father died we were very close. We will know diffuse this emotional blockage which will open the way to heal. You can use EFT on line or other modalities. Sometimes its brought on by iatrogenic diseases which is defined in most dictionaries as drug induced diseases from the medical establishment. It was one in three when I did my thesis in 2003

    Reply

  21. THANK YOU! So excited to try these alternatives!!

    Reply

  22. Well, as this post is kind old, I am wondering if anything changed in this last 4 years… Hope the natural treatment still work for all…

    Reply

  23. I went on a strict diet for UC several years ago. No dairy, no grains, no starch, no sugar, no corn, no legumes, and no pit fruits (because of sugar content). It took almost 1 1/2 years but I got over UC (Dr.’s say I don’t have it now). I recall that my asthma was non existent then. Over the last couple years my asthma has been marching back steadily and I am becoming more and more reliant on my rescue inhaler. Starting today I am going dairy free, sugar and gluten free and will drink more water, and will start an essential oil regimen. I hope this works…again.

    Reply

  24. Awesome post! I’ve just weened myself off of Advair by adding CBD oil to my daily natural health regimen. Not only has it greatly helped reduce my lung mucous and make breathing easier but also many other things like improving my sleep quality, energy level and pain management (I have a damaged tailbone and bad knees). I’ve tried mixing peppermint and sweet orange essential oils, lobelia and mullien for my asthma and they do help but the CBD oil has had the most thorough ‘all day’ affect. I really enjoyed reading everyone’s comments and will try adding a few of the suggested alternatives to gain further control of my inflammation (i.e. turmeric, cod liver oil & B5). Thanks!

    Reply

  25. May I ask, How long did u take the Advair? I’ve been prescribed this recently.

    Reply

  26. Wow!! These are awesome tips!!! We are going to have to add these to my son’s (8yo) maintenance and asthma attack routine.
    If I could, I’d also like to plug halotherapy, salt therapy. I started finding out about it when researching natural asthma remedies, and I mentioned it to him, and he told me there is an end cap of just salt lamps at our vitamin store, and when he stands there, he breathe clearly and he said I never knew why, now I do! We bought him a lamp for his bedroom (actually he bought it!) And even though it is bright, if he leaves it on all the time, it makes a huge difference. He’s having fewer attacks and can play and run and not need an inhaler. I can’t recommend it enough. There are salt chambers and salt grottoes at natural health clinics and chiropractors offices, salt lamps and salt inhalers, they help a ton and have no side effects. Thanks to your article, now we know what we can try other than albuterol for attacks. Thank you so much!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

Meet My Family
Top
Love our content? Sigh for our weekly newsletter and get our FREE Vaccine Guide!