Never has it been more important to look after our lungs. These vital organs are responsible for every breath we take, and keeping them healthy will help fight against respiratory infections, deadly viruses and serious, long-term lung conditions.
According to the British Lung Foundation, 10,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with lung disease every week, but by prioritising lung care we can reduce our risk. Here’s how…
Sweating and panting is actually good for our lungs. ‘Physical activity improves breathing, and raising your heart rate regularly boosts lung power, increases stamina and reduces breathlessness,’ says Dr Noel Baxter, GP and medical adviser to the British Lung Foundation.
Exercise also supports the immune system, which helps to fight colds and viruses. Attempt at least 180 minutes per week of activity that raises your heart rate and makes you breathe faster. ‘But, even if you can’t do much, just standing up sometimes instead of sitting down all the time can bring benefits,’ says Dr Baxter.
Despite the number of smokers in the UK being at an all-time low, there are still 6.1 million adults who light up, harming themselves and others with toxic fumes. ‘Tobacco smoke contains over 5,000 chemicals including nicotine, which is highly addictive,’ says Dr Baxter. ‘Smokers smoke for the nicotine fix, but are harmed by the tar and other chemicals, many of which can cause cancer.’ These chemicals directly damage lungs and pass into the blood, affecting every part of the body, from the skin to the brain. ‘By quitting, you’ll live longer, feel better and have more money to spend on activities you like doing. You’ll also protect people around you who breathe in your smoke,’ says Dr Baxter.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
DNA The secret to a longer life?
With claims that home-testing kits may prevent future illness, is this a trend worth investing in?
Feel good FRAGRANCE
Searching for that perfect summer perfume? Look for notes that uplift and inspire
Learning to RELAX
Discovering a new way of self-soothing – be it with an activity or natural medication – can swiftly reduce stress levels. So what will suit you best?
The only way is UP
If you’ve got a head for heights and love a challenge, climbing might be for you. Take inspiration from these three women who’ve made it their passion
GRIEF HAS NO TIME LIMIT
Losing someone you are close to changes everything. Here’s how grief may feel and how to get through it
‘My periods were controlling MY LIFE'
For nearly 20 years, Donna Louise, 41, had to fit her life around painful, heavy bleeding while searching for a solution...
Love your LUNGS
It’s time to show our respiratory system the TLC it deserves
The truth about starchy FOOD
We also know them as complex carbohydrates, but are starchy foods as unhealthy as we’ve been led to believe?
The joy of keeping it simple
This year’s lockdown has disrupted the lives of just about everyone, but there are some lessons we think are worth learning…
10 Surprising Benefits Of Sleep
Getting decent shut-eye boosts our bodies and brains, but did you know about these lesser-known gains of good rest?