Until something is noticeably wrong, we often take our lungs for granted. Having pain in your abdomen, twisting an ankle, tweaking your knee, or experiencing a killer headache; are all notable and more easily identifiable ailments. It’s not until you are coughing your head off (figuratively) or experiencing tightness in your chest, causing slight panic that you might seek out care for your upper respiratory system. Your lungs are the organ of your body that supplies oxygen to the blood stream. When your lungs begin to fail the rest of your body also begins to fail.
How about loving your lungs in 9 simple ways!
1. Don’t smoke!
Smoking cigarettes (e-cigarettes, juul’s, and vapes included) is the major cause of lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema, as well as bronchitis that lingers. Smoking can narrow your airways and make breathing extremely difficult. Your lungs will experience swelling, and over time smoking will start to destroy lung tissue,decrease the ability to provide oxygen to your body. Physiological changes within your respiratory system can also be triggered and cause cancer.
If you smoke, it’s never too late to quit and the benefits are amazing!!
- Save MONEY $$$$
- Have healthier looking skin
- Improved overall LUNG function
- Decreased risks of cancer
- Better tasting food
- Increased heart benefits
- LIVE a longer life with those you love
- Sleep better at night
- FREEDOM from cigarettes!
ATTENTION! Look at these Facts
- 1 pack a day habit on average costs $6.18. You can save roughly $2,200 a year! What would you do for YOU with that added savings?!
- That is a vacation with your family!!
- 20 minutes after quitting your heart rate drops back down to normal! In just 2 weeks to 3 months your heart attack risk begins to drop, and your lung function begins to improve.
- In a year, your risk of coronary heart disease is HALF that of a smoker. And your heart keeps on getting healthier!
- Smoking also increases your risk for cancer of the stomach, mouth, throat, kidney, cervix, pancreas and bladder. Which equates to surgery…time in hospital….medical bills…pain and suffering for not just you but YOUR FAMILY…the people who love you!!
Quitting is HARD ya’ll, Quitting cold turkey is proven to be the hardest method, and you don’t have to go that route! Various smoking cessation methods are available. Below are two available hotlines available to the public for free!
Call 1-877-44U-QUIT – where trained addiction counselors are available to provide information to help with quitting in both English and Spanish
Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to connect directly with trained coaches who provide information and help with quitting, with different methods and resources
Also for free and could be profit making in your cookie jar… stop buying cigarettes. Do we here a vacation calling ? Pay off the car, get a special something for your special something?
2. Simple deep breathing and counting your inhalations
This is one of the easiest yet tricky tricks in the book! Be the master of your body. Work towards 7 counts inhale and 9 counts exhale. Not so easy at first. The benefits are worth the work. Your mind will begin to clear, your blood sugars will improve and your body will relax and begin to smile with practice.
If you practice yoga, meditation, or other breathing specific exercise – you’re personal practice of deep breathing is probably great! Deep breathing challenges our lungs to get to full capacity and the more we deep breathe the better exercise we give them!
3.Prevent infection (to the best of your abilities)
A common cold or a respiratory infection can turn into something very serious if left untreated. There are numerous things you can do to protect yourself from germy situations.
- Wash your hands often with both soap and warm water. This is especially important before meals, before you touch your face (or mouth), before you go to bed, and after you use the restroom. Hand sanitizer is a good substitution if you aren’t able to wash.
- Avoid large crowds (when possible) during cold and flu season. This is one that many of us do not have the leisure to do; so I would advise to air on the side of caution and when you are already presenting signs and symptoms of illness to avoid others. Protect others and yourself when you find yourself in these situations!
- Good oral hygiene can help you in the fight against germs in your mouth that can lead to infection. Brushing your teeth at least two times a day and visiting your dentist 2x a year is a great preventative to combat oral infection/disease.
4. Get regular healthcare
Routine checkups allow doctors to listen closely to your breathing and listen to any concerns you may have regarding your overall health. This is especially true when you are dealing with lung disease, which often goes undiagnosed until there is a serious concern.
5. Watch your posture
Your lungs are very soft structures, and therefore they only take up as much space as you allow. A simple exercise that you can do at any time of the day is to sit tall in a supportive chair and pull your shoulder blades down into your back pocket while you take a deep breath. This will allow you to feel your lungs expand, and slow you down to take a deep breath or two, in even the busiest parts of your day.
6. Staying active
Move your body, folks! Regular moderately intense activity ( walking ) is great for the lungs, and when you increase your daily activity you get three things done at once: healthy lungs, a healthier heart, and a better mood.
7. Staying hydrated
This is one of THE most important factors to optimize your health that is often so overlooked. We can eat the right foods all day, but our body, and our organs ,lungs included, need water. It’s recommended that you start off trying to consume half of your body weight in ounces of water. For example, if you are 150 pounds, challenge yourself to try and consume 75 ounces of water. This includes juices, tea and decaf coffee. Just plain water is best but start where you can. A day is when you wake until you sleep. small glasses of water all day will make a tremendous effect to your well being. If you suffer from congestive heart failure or kidney disease please consult your Doctor on the best recommended consumption for you.
I know it sounds crazy, but go out and purchase a cup that speaks to you in order to accomplish this goal. It might be an insulated YETI type of cup or more like a water bottle set-up. If you are using a cup you genuinely enjoy (and like the aesthetics of), you are going to be more apt to pick it up and drink from it!
8. Join a breathing club
If you aren’t able to be active due to breathing problems, you can join a breathing club! Sing, cheer on the grand kids at a sporting event. There are many ways you can work on breathing techniques and use one another as resources to improve your quality of health. No one suffers alone! Community is the essence of getting through trials and tribulations including addiction, mental illness, divorce, and cancer, among many other serious situations. There is power in numbers!
9. Don’t forget to laugh!
Laughing exercises your abdominal muscles and increases your lung capacity… so, it’s a win, win! It also clears out your lungs by flushing out stale air that’s trapped in them and makes room for fresh air to enter the lungs.
We have only been blessed with one pair of lungs. This physical machine we walk around in is a glorious piece of work. We get one life, one pyramid, one day to day to live amazing and beautiful. Be Beautiful…Stop supporting an industry who does not care about you, “tobacco”.
In stead: live…love your family….love your tribe of peeps….life is glorious and meant to be lived to the utmost extent you can give it!