Eating a sensible diet improves lung health, research shows

Aug 24, 2010

Steering clear of full-fat, fried, and processed foods is not just good for overall health, it could help prevent chronic lung conditions, a large UK study has revealed.

Led by Seif Shaheen, Professor of Respiratory Epidemiology at Barts and The London School of Medicine, the study - involving 1,551 men and 1,391 women with an average age of 66 - showed that those whose favoured fresh fruit and vegetables, and wholegrain products had far better than those who chose a diet high in fat, sugar and processed food.

The diets of those involved were investigated to assess what kinds of food they consumed on a regular basis. Their lung function was also tested using a spirometer, a device which measures the amount of air that a person can blow out of their lungs in one second. This simple test illustrates how healthy the lungs are, and determines whether any blockage or obstruction exists in the airways. If the airways are obstructed, the person is diagnosed with (COPD).

The study also revealed that the beneficial effects of the sensible diet were particularly strong in men who smoked.

Lung health in particular may be positively affected by a sensible diet because of the antioxidants contained in fruit and wholegrains, and the omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish - that protect the lungs against the adverse effects of smoking.

Professor Shaheen said: “Whilst cessation of smoking is still the number one way to improve lung health, this study is important because it suggests that cases of COPD might be prevented if people, especially male smokers, ate more fruit and vegetables, oily fish and wholegrain cereals, and less white bread, sugar, full fat dairy products, fried food and processed meat. However, the only way to confirm this would be to carry out a .”

Explore further: Egg freezing: controversial new benefit in the US workplace

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New problems tagged to smoking

Jan 06, 2007

Smoking can lead to obstructed airways or lung disease that could surface many years after smokers quit, doctors in Taiwan said.

Processed, high-fat foods linked with depression

Nov 02, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- People who eat a diet laden with processed and high-fat foods may put themselves at greater risk of depression, according to UCL (University College London) research published today.

Western diet link to ADHD

Jul 29, 2010

A new study from Perth's Telethon Institute for Child Health Research shows an association between ADHD and a 'Western-style' diet in adolescents.

Researchers show link between lung disease and heart function

Jan 20, 2010

A new study from Columbia University Medical Center researchers, has found that the heart's ability to pump effectively is diminished among people with a common lung disease, even in people with no or mild symptoms. Published ...

Recommended for you

Birth season affects your mood in later life

Oct 19, 2014

New research shows that the season you are born has a significant impact on your risk of developing mood disorders. People born at certain times of year may have a greater chance of developing certain types of affective temperaments, ...

CMS announces two new initiatives to improve care

Oct 17, 2014

(HealthDay)—Two initiatives have been announced to help improve the quality of post-acute care in nursing homes and ensure safe delivery of quality care to home health patients, according to a report published ...

User comments : 0