You know to avoid smoking (and secondhand smoke), but here’s another way to show lungs some love: Chow down on high-fiber foods.
A 2016 study found they can boost lung function and lower the chance of problems like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Experts speculate that as the good bacteria in your gut digest fiber, they produce a powerful by-product that may reduce lung inflammation. Now that’s a superfood.
How to Reap the Benefits
To get the payoff, aim for at least 17.5 grams of fiber daily. These sources will help you get the best bang for your buck:
- split peas
A dose of vitamin C could help too, according to a 2017 study. “Apples, bananas, and tomatoes are chock-full of cell-protecting vitamin C – plus other phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals – that have been linked to preserving lung function in ex-smokers,” says Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, Nutrition Director at the Good Housekeeping Institute.