The Fundamentals

A disease of paroxysmal construction of the bronchial airways caused by increased responsiveness of the tracheobronchial tree to various stimuli. Asthma attacks have a slow or sudden onset. In a sudden onset, rapid development of airway construction and even death may occur within minutes. As many as 25% of asthma deaths may be attributed to this condition. Asthma is marked by severe dyspnea accompanied by wheezing. Patients tend to hunch their shoulders forward in an attempt to get more air. Asthma does not age- discriminate, however, it more frequently occurs in childhood or early adulthood. Twice as many boys as girls have asthma. It may be caused by allergens in the air including pollen, animal dander, or dust; occasionally by food, such as shellfish or eggs; or drugs such as aspirin. Sometimes, asthma develops in people with allergies of an unknown origin. It may even be triggered by a respiratory tract infection.

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ymptoms of asthma include coughing while exercising or immediately afterwards, shortness of breath, wheezing, or tightness in the chest. Symptoms generally start or are "triggered" by something that bothers your lungs. These are called asthma triggers. There are many kinds of triggers, ranging from viruses and allergies, to toxins, to dust or pollen. Cigarette smoking or second-hand smoke is a severe trigger that must be avoided. Studies show that children of smokers are more likely to develop asthma.
There are many herbal remedies available to help asthma sufferers. Ginkgo, long used by the Chinese to treat asthma, contains ginkgolides which inhibit platelet activating factor, a chemical involved in asthma and allergies. Studies show that ginkgolides taken orally reduce narrowing of the airways. Laboratory tests on Garlic show that, due to its anti-inflammatory, immune-stimulating, and antimicrobial properties, extracts can block production of certain chemicals involved in inflammation, thereby inhibiting allergen-induced asthma. Other anti-inflammatory herbs, such as Licorice, Turmeric, which contains the antiviral, antioxidant, and antitumor curcumin, and Mullein, also with antispasmodic properties, all help to reduce constriction of the airways during an asthma attack. Additionally, Astragalus and Reishi Mushrooms boast healthful effects including histamines, ability to reduce allergies, and strengthen immune system's natural defenses.
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Note: This information is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the use of a qualified health care professional. We strongly recommend the use of a physician for the diagnostic phase of any treatment. With an accurate diagnosis in hand, we believe the consumer, at that point, has a basic, unalienable right to seek out factual information on all therapeutic approaches, both orthodox and alternative, and choose those approach(es) that are right for them. Nonetheless, a "good doctor" should be considered a requisite starting point.

To U.S. Users: None of the products mentioned on this page have been evaluated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration; therefore, they are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
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