Just about everyone with asthma would like to use their medicine less, and that’s why we often turn to alternative remedies to manage our symptoms. I always try to look for remedies that are common sense and that are good for my health overall. Lemons are definitely on that list.
Fresh squeezed lemon juice can be very good for managing asthma. I drink lemon juice in warm water every morning to help manage my symptoms. It’s important that people with asthma only drink FRESH juice, as artificial lemon juice can cause problems.
I’ll cover the issue with artificial juice below, along with a few other things asthmatics should keep in mind before drinking lemon juice. But for now, let’s jump into why and how to drink lemon juice for lung health.
Why Lemons Are Good For Asthma
There are several reasons why someone with asthma should want to add lemons to their diet. First and foremost, a diet high in fruits and vegetables is one of the most important things we can do to manage our symptoms (learn more about the best diet for asthma here).
There are lots of health benefits of lemons that can benefit lung health and asthma. Specifically:
Lemons Are Immune Boosting
By now, most of us know that lemons are very high in Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is very important for immune health (source). If you have asthma, it’s even more important to ward off colds and flus, so adding some extra immunity boosters to your daily routine is a good idea.
Lemons Are Anti-Inflammatory
Lemons are also rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants (source). Asthma is caused by inflammation of the airways, so it’s beneficial to consume foods that can help lower inflammation. In fact, most of my favorite teas for asthma are also anti-inflammatory – see them here.
Lemons Are Antibacterial and Antiviral
Lemons have more great qualities. They are antibacterial (source) and antiviral (source). And as we’ve already discussed, it’s extra important for people with asthma to want to fight the illnesses that bacteria and viruses bring.
Lemon Juice Can Keep You Hydrated
Don’t underestimate the little things. Drinking lots of water each day might have a bigger impact on your asthma symptoms that you realize. And of course, hydration is really important for your whole body (learn more about why here).
Click here if you’d like to read some tips on how to drink more water. Drinking a glass of water with lemon juice each morning is one of the easiest ways to drink more water and stay better hydrated. I find it a nice and refreshing way to stay my day.
Not only do lemons have all these health benefits for asthma, according to Healthline, they may also “reduce your risk of heart disease, anemia, kidney stones, digestive issues, and cancer” (source). They’re also a good source of potassium and Vitamin B6 (source). And of course they also taste and smell lovely. So they definitely fit my criteria for asthma remedies worth trying (ie, those that are good for your whole body).
Don’t Forget Limes!
I’ve just laid out all the ways lemons can help asthma. But don’t forget about limes. Nutritionally, limes are very similar to lemons, which means they also offer similar health benefits.
So if you prefer the taste of limes, or limes are cheaper or more available to you, then feel free to substitute them for lemons.
I personally like the juice from both, so I mix it up each day.
How To Drink Lemon Juice For Asthma
The most popular way to drink lemon juice is to have it in the morning, squeezed into a glass of warm water. Many people find that this helps get their digestion system moving in the morning, and I tend to agree.
Specifically, squeeze half of a lemon into about a cup of water. A lemon squeezer will make this much easier. I like to use warm water to help ease digestion, but do whatever works best for you.
If you find the taste too sharp, you may want to add honey, which has other benefits for asthma. You can also add ginger, cinnamon, or mint if you like. Cucumber slices are another popular addition. Personally, I enjoy it plain. It’s a bit bitter the first time you try it, but I’ve really grown to enjoy the flavor.
Large quantities of lemon juice can be hard on your teeth. To combat this, you can use a straw, so you can bypass your teeth a little while drinking. I am also sure to always swish my mouth out with water after drinking – which has the added benefit of ensuring I start my morning with even more water.
Why Artificial Juice Is Bad For Asthma
Learning all the health benefits of juice for asthma, it might be tempting to skip all that squeezing and buy the artificial juice can get in the store. Don’t do this!
Artificial lemon and lime juice usually contains sulfite, which can be triggering for people with asthma (sulfite is what also makes red wine triggering for people). So stay on the safe side and always choose fresh lemons and limes.
Note that it is possible but rare to be allergic to lemons. And of course everyone with asthma is different. While lemon juice is usually a good choice, obviously you might want to avoid it if you find lemons triggering in general. Use your best judgement, and consider keeping an asthma journal so you can keep track of your symptoms and how they are improving.
More Ways to Enjoy Lemons
Thankfully, it’s not too hard to make fresh lemon or lime juice. You just need a good lemon squeezer (I have this one and it’s pretty sturdy). And you also have to know how to squeeze them properly!
I find my mornings are often rushed, so I will often squeeze my lemon juice the night before, so it’s ready and waiting.
Or, if you’re pressed for time, you can also squeeze fresh juice into an ice cube tray. Then, when you need it, all you have to do is pop a block of juice out of the freezer.
I’m a big fan of using tea for asthma, and adding a squeeze of lemon (and honey) to tea is a great way to amp up the health benefits. And look for more ways to add lemons to your cooking.
I also really like the Wellness Shot from Splendid Spoon, which contains lemon juice, ginger juice and oregano juice, all organic (oregano is another fantastic health booster for asthma – see why here). It’s great because it’s so healthy, and they deliver it to you, making it a bit easy to eat healthier. If you’re interested, follow this link to get $10 off your first order.
Lemon (and lime) juice is healthy, affordable, and offers lots of great health benefits for people with asthma. So … what are you waiting for?