It’s important to maintain healthy lungs. This isn’t just true for mountaineers and endurance runners. The condition of your lungs determines how well you’re able to breathe. Obviously, breathing well is important, but your lungs do more than just facilitate the breaths that you take.
Every cell in your body needs oxygen, and your lungs are essential in providing those cells with the oxygen that they need. If your body isn’t receiving enough oxygen, you’re more likely to suffer from health complications including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cardiovascular disease, and improper brain function.
Your lungs need exercise, just like your muscles do, in order to stay healthy. According to the American Lung Association an adult resting respiration rate is 12 to 15 breaths per minutes. That factors out to be roughly 6 million breaths a year. While that might sound like a lot, it’s just a fraction of your lungs’ capacity. For most people, normal breathing is sufficient for delivering oxygen throughout the body, but it isn’t going to promote healthy lungs.
It’s recommended that you get a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise a day. Moderate to intense movement raises your respiration rate, which helps exercise your lungs. Deep breathing can also help cleanse the lungs and increase lung capacity.
Breathing exercises are a good way to improve your lung health. The COPD Foundation offers some healthy breathing techniques.
Smoking is one of the biggest causes of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer. It damages the lungs and can lead to emphysema. One of the easiest ways to increase lung health is by not smoking.
Another way to increase lung health is by limiting the amount of air pollutants that you’re exposed to. Dust and vacuum your home regularly to improve the air quality in your home. Pay attention to the pollen index and avoid breathing in smoke or chemicals.
The America Lung Association also recommends regular checkups with your healthcare provider to make sure that your lungs stay healthy. Schedule an appointment today!