You Can Be Pro-Active in Managing COPD Symptoms! Here’s How
What do you think is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States? If you didn’t guess chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) don’t worry. You aren’t alone. Many people are surprised to learn that over 11 million Americans have been diagnosed with COPD, and that it is estimated as many as 24 million others suffer COPD symptoms but go undiagnosed.
COPD therapy is among the most commonly performed therapies at the National Stem Cell Institute (NSI). NSI is a leading regenerative medicine clinic based in the U.S., and continues to see a steady increase in reported cases. And while COPD stem cell therapy is making great strides in helping patients manage their disease, NSI urges those who suffer from COPD symptoms to be pro-active in their medical care.
You can make a big difference in the severity of your COPD symptoms by following the 12 simple, all-natural tips outlined below in this article.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease isn’t really a disease in and of itself but is a “basket” term that encompasses several different lung diseases including emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and -in some cases- asthma. Most people suffering from COPD symptoms exhibit a combination of these diseases that is unique to them.
Smoking is Reason Number 1 for the development of COPD. But other conditions have also been linked to COPD symptoms, including genetics and exposure to environmental toxins. COPD symptoms frequently don’t arise until the lungs have been significantly damaged. The symptoms generally worsen over time, especially if the patient continues to smoke.
Those most likely to experience COPD symptoms include:
- People who currently or formerly smoke tobacco products
- People who have been diagnosed with asthma
- Older persons between the ages of 65 and 74
- Non-Hispanic Whites
COPD symptoms include:
- Feeling short of breath during typical daily activity or typical physical activity
- Experiencing a chronic cough
- Wheezing when breathing
- Tightening sensation in the chest
- Frequently experienced respiratory infections
- Lips or fingernails take on a bluish cast
- Generalized fatigue, lack of energy, or chronic fatigue syndrome
- Excessive mucus or phlegm production
- Undesired weight loss
Experiencing one or more of these potential COPD symptoms, most especially if they are recurring or chronic, is a warning sign to see a doctor. Only a trained medical professional can diagnose or rule out chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The earlier your COPD symptoms are detected, the better. But getting diagnosed and treated is the key to successfully managing COPD symptoms at any stage.
The four stages of COPD are:
Stage 1: very mild COPD
Stage 2: moderate COPD
Stage 3: severe emphysema/chronic bronchitis
Stage 4: very severe COPD
Each stage of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has a unique effect on the individual patient. However, in general, COPD can result in serious long-term disabilities and can even lead to early death. While there is no official cure as yet for COPD, the news isn’t necessarily dire. COPD symptoms can be managed and their progression slowed with proper treatment.
Currently, certain medications and stem cell therapy are the most advanced medical interventions and have shown to be quite successful in slowing progression and improving quality of life at every stage.
Being pro-active in lifestyle changes and using certain natural remedies have been shown to be profoundly helpful in managing COPD symptoms, as well. Often, the daily things that a COPD sufferer can do right at home can greatly enhance the effects of medication and regenerative medicine techniques like stem cell therapy.
Some patients have been able to reduce medication dosage by incorporating these changes and remedies. So, let’s take a look at 10 of the most effective natural ways to manage and reduce COPD symptoms.
12 Natural Way to Manage Your COPD Symptoms
- Stop Smoking and Avoid Smoky Environments
The single most effective way to slow the progression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is to stop smoking. Tobacco smoke of any kind –even from e-cigarettes or vaping- worsens COPD symptoms and progresses the disease.
In fact, inhaling any type of smoke –including cannabis- is a lung irritant in general and especially problematic for people suffering from COPD. So, avoid any and all smoky environments, and do not inhale smoke of any kind regardless of the device being used. In general, you should avoid exposure to smoke of any kind. You should also avoid air pollution like chemicals and perfumes as much as possible.
It’s not always obvious that you are exposing yourself to a smoky environment. So if you find yourself experiencing an episode, even though no smoke or air pollutants seem present, look around for possible irritants. Sometimes even an indoor fireplace can be the source of air-borne irritants that can aggravate COPD symptoms and further damage your lungs.
- Improve Your Ability to Breathe
You can actually help boost your breathing capacity and reduce COPD symptoms by practicing special breathing exercises. Pursed-lip breathing and diaphragmatic breathing are helpful in increasing blood oxygen levels and in reducing feelings of shortness of breath. A well trained functional rehabilitation respiratory therapist can assist with these therapeutic breathing methods.
- Adopt a Healthy Diet
This natural way to help manage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is too often overlooked by the COPD sufferer. But adopting a healthy eating regimen has been shown to be very helpful in managing and improving COPD symptoms.
This is because many foods that are unhealthy for anyone –let alone someone with COPD- cause an inflammatory response in the body. Many of the diseases that fall under the COPD umbrella are inflammatory by their nature and are aggravated by certain foods.
For many people who suffer from COPD symptoms, dairy should be avoided. Dairy promotes mucus production. Virtually all of the diseases of COPD cause overproduction of mucus, which clogs the airways. Introducing dairy into the mix can aggravate the problem. Likewise processed, canned and frozen foods, and refined sugar have additives, preservatives and food dyes that are known to contribute to COPD symptoms and asthma attacks.
While some foods should be avoided, others should be increased or introduced into your new healthy eating regimen.
A diet rich in fresh veggies and fruits helps to ensure that the body is getting crucial vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Citrus is particularly good because fruits that contain citrus are rich in quercetin. Healthy fat foods like wild-caught fish, nuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds, also promote healthy lung function.
- Drink Plenty of Water and Keep Your Home Air Well Humidified
The clogging of airways with mucus is one of the most distressing of COPD symptoms. It is often very hard to clear, which is why your lungs react to it through uncontrollable coughing. Keeping well hydrated by drinking several glasses of water every day helps to thin out mucus, making it easier for your lungs to clear it from the airways.
And consider increasing the moisture content of the air in your home, office, and anywhere you spend a great deal of time. Humidifiers help ease breathing. The Lung Institute has recommendations on how and when to use a humidifier.
- Get Moving with Exercise and Activities
It’s very easy to fall into the trap of reducing exercise and other physical activities when struggling with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. But it has been shown that staying as active as possible and getting regular cardio exercise strengthens respiratory muscles and improves overall stamina. You don’t need to work out like an Olympic athlete.
Your doctor or physical therapist will have excellent advice on how to begin an exercise routine that you can stick with and will successfully help you manage your COPD symptoms.
Exercise does more than improve your breathing capacity. It also helps relieve the depression and anxiety associated with COPD symptoms. When you feel better both mentally and physically, motivation to make the right healthy choices becomes easier, too. Be sure to consult with your doctor or physical therapist before beginning any exercise routine. Following their advice will help you find activities that you’ll enjoy and continue to do.
- Consider Using Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Most people with COPD will experience exacerbations, which are episodes of worsening of COPD symptoms that may last for several days. Eucalyptus essential oil has been shown to be effective in helping to reduce the duration of exacerbations. But you don’t have to wait for one of these episodes to use the oil. It’s also known to help reduce shortness of breath, as well as improve lung function.
Research suggests that the cineole in eucalyptus oil also acts as an airway anti-inflammatory in COPD. The best way to reap the benefits of this essential oil is to breathe to use it in a diffuser and/or humidifier. Breathe in the oil-infused air.
NOTE! Eucalyptus oil is not suitable to use around young children.
- Use a Ginseng Supplement
American ginseng and Asian ginseng have been shown to help boost energy, lower blood sugar, and cholesterol levels, reduce stress, and promote relaxation among other benefits. It has also been linked to the improvement of respiratory conditions, including asthma and COPD symptoms. Ginsenosides are the active ingredients in ginseng and are believed to be responsible for inhibiting the processes related to the development of COPD.
- Ask Your Doctor About N-Acetylcysteine (NAC)
The natural compound N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) has been shown to dissolve and loosen mucus in patients with respiratory disorders such as chronic bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Adding NAC as a supplement has been linked to improvements to overall lung function and a decrease in the severity and frequency of COPD symptoms.
NAC increases glutathione levels and thins bronchial mucus. Glutathione is an antioxidant that combats oxidative stress in the respiratory tract. This makes NAC a powerful and effective natural supplement for relieving COPD symptoms.
- Take Extra Measures to Prevent Colds, Flu, and Exposure to Cold Air
People who suffer from COPD symptoms are especially susceptible to colds, flu, and respiratory infections. They are also more sensitive to cold air, which can trigger bronchospasms. Bronchospasms are sudden constrictions in the muscles of airway walls. So stay out of the cold as much as possible.
When you must venture outdoors, one way to help prevent illnesses and cold weather exposure that worsens COPD symptoms is to wear a medical mask. The mask will help warm the air as it passes through the mask’s material to your nose and mouth. A medical mask will also help reduce your exposure to colds, flu, and respiratory infections when you’re in a highly crowded area, such as a mall, using mass transit, or during air travel.
A medical mask is also a good idea when attending family gatherings, especially during cold and flu season.
Hugs and kisses from children warm the heart, but they can also put your lungs at risk. Children in preschool and kindergarten average 9 to 12 colds a year respectively. Wearing a medical mask will help you get the hug you want while avoiding the respiratory infection you don’t. Also, use a hand sanitizer and wash your hands regularly throughout the day when with family or in a public area.
- Find Ways to Reduce Stress
Stress is something many of us don’t take seriously until it seriously affects us, even though it has been well established as a major contributor to health problems. This is even truer for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Stress worsens COPD symptoms by aggravating airway inflammation and contributing to shortness of breath.
Practicing healthy stress reduction promotes relaxation and has a direct positive effect on COPD symptoms. You can find effective relaxation techniques on the Lung Institute’s website.
- Avoid Using Chemically Based Household Products and Beauty Supplies
A study conducted in 2015 looked at 167 people who have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. 60% of the participants reported that they experienced a worsening of their COPD symptoms while using chemically-based cleaning products. Over 50% said that their symptoms worsened when exposed to perfume, hairspray, scented candles, or insecticides. Fortunately, there are many natural DIY household supplies to be found on the web today. Use as many as you can, or consider purchasing natural cleaning and beauty supplies from a trusted source.
- Consider Regenerative Therapies like Stem Cell Therapy
Today, many physicians and medical professionals consider stem cell therapy the most advanced management available for COPD symptoms. Regenerative medicine procedures work at the cellular level to effect repair, healing, and regeneration of damaged tissues.
Advancements in these techniques have resulted in a growing list of illnesses, conditions, and injuries being addressed by stem cell and platelet rich plasma therapies.
It’s important, however, to keep in mind –as with any medical procedure- that regenerative medicine therapies require licensed, trained physicians if they are to be performed in the United States. With that in mind, the National Stem Cell Institute (NSI) offers tips below on how to help ensure the U.S. stem cell clinic you are considering is fully licensed and FDA guidelines-compliant.
What to Look for in a Stem Cell Medical Clinic
When searching for a qualified stem cell therapy center it’s important to remember that not all of them are created equal. Stem cells, when used properly, are your body’s most powerful means for healing that can repair everything from ligaments, tendons, and cartilage to organs including your liver, pancreas and lungs and even neurological tissue like your brain, nerves, and spinal cord.
Unfortunately, the majority of so-called “regenerative medicine clinics” in the world aren’t trained in the latest, most technologically advanced procedures and will, therefore, provide poor results if any.
The good news is the National Stem Cell Institute (NSI) has established the most advanced stem cell and platelet rich plasma procedures on the planet which has drawn patients from all over the world as well as professional athletes and celebrities because they are recognized as the best in the world at stem cell therapy.
What makes NSI Stem Cell the top stem cell clinic in the world is demonstrated in 5 key areas:
1. Highly trained and experienced, board-certified doctors and team members who have performed stem cell procedures on thousands of patients with incredible results.
2. Cutting edge procedures utilizing all that regenerative medicine has to offer for many chronic degenerative conditions.
3. Leading scientific researchers who follow the advanced guidelines to maximize the healing potential of your stem cells and to maintain compliance and ethics
4. Use of only the most potent and viable resource of living, viable stem cells and harvested on the same day. No vial that you can purchase will contain living stem cells. If there is no harvest then there are no stem cells.
5. Post-operative guidance for supporting stem-cell growth including rehabilitation, diet and supplement protocols. NSI is a full-service healthcare center focused on patient outcomes. Stem cell therapy is only one tool used to help improve patients’ lives.
Patients have raved about their experience at NSI Stem Cell Clinics testifying that it was their unique cutting-edge procedures that helped them experience a breakthrough when nothing else worked.
If you want to learn more about NSI Stem Cell Clinics, you can set up a complimentary consultation today to see if you are a candidate. You can contact the National Stem Cell Institute at (877) 278-3623.
* Disclaimer: Individual patient results may vary. As each patient’s problem is different, each treatment must be tailored around your specific needs.