The System functions:
The human body requires a constant stream of oxygen to stay alive. The respiratory system is responsible for providing oxygen to the body’s cells while removing carbon dioxide, a waste product that can be lethal if allowed to accumulate. There are three major parts of the respiratory system: the airway, the lungs and the muscles of respiration.
Airway – This includes the nose, mouth, pharynx, larynx, trachea, bronchi and bronchioles. The airway carries air between the lungs and the body’s exterior.
Lungs – Lungs act as the functional units of the respiratory system by passing oxygen into the body and carbon dioxide out of the body.
Muscles of Respiration – These include the diaphragm and intercostal muscles, which work together to act as a pump, pushing air into and out of the lungs during breathing.
Nasal cavities, sinuses, oropharynx, pharynx, larynx, trachea, right and left bronchus, and lungs.
What you can do to help support a healthy Respiratory System:
Essential Vitamins & Minerals: Vitamin A, Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid), Vitamin C, Vitamin E.
Foods to include:
Papaya, Kiwi, Cantaloupe, Watermelon, Citrus Fruits, Prickly Pear
Kale, Spinach, Collard Greens, Carrots, Celery, Onions
Wild-Caught Salmon, Mackerel, Herring, Oysters, Kefir, Eggs
Nut & Seeds
Brazil Nuts, Almonds, Walnuts, Cashews, Hemp Seeds, Chia Seeds
Black Beans, Herbal Tea, Olive Oil, Ginger, Garlic, Kimchi
Daily morning cleanse: 8-12oz of lemon water.
Foods you should avoid or limit:
Do your best to read the labels on packaged food. If the names are too hard to pronounce, they are likely chemical based ingredients and not very good for you.
- Processed and high-sodium foods such as cured ham, bacon, sausage
potato chips. and
- Foods that contain all-purpose flour such as pizza, bagels, pretzels, white bread, and flour tortillas.
- Foods containing artificial sweeteners like Sucralose such as yogurt, cereal, whole grain muffins
bread and microwave popcorn. and
- Beware of “reduced sugar” labels which are usually loaded with artificial sweeteners such as fruit juice, ketchup, jams, jelly, syrup, soda, sports drinks, ice cream
salad dressings. and
Artificial sweeteners you should try to avoid:
Aspartame, Acesulfame potassium, Alitame, Cyclamate, Dulcin, Equal, Glucin, Kaltame, Mogrosides, Neotame, NutraSweet, Nutrinova, Phenylalanine, Saccharin, Splenda, Sorbitol, Sucralose, Twinsweet, Sweet ‘N Low, Xylitol
Physical activity is essential for good health. New studies show even 15 minutes of elevated heart rate from activity has numerous benefits. Find activities you enjoy doing and aim for at least 15 minutes 4 to 5 times per week.
- CARDIO: Biking, Hiking, Walking, Running, Swimming, Dancing, Zumba
- STRENGTH: Weight Training, Pilates, Vigorous Yoga, P90X, Crossfit, Barre
- FLEXIBILITY: Yoga and Stretching
Common signs and symptoms associated with the respiratory system include shortness of breath, wheezing, congestion, cough, phlegm and nasal drainage.
Asthma – Lungdisease that causes narrowing and swelling of the airways.
- Chronic Bronchitis – Recurrent lung infections usually caused by a virus resulting in wheezing, cough or shortness of breath.
- Emphysema (COPD) – Long-term chronic lung disease.
- Hay Fever – Allergic symptoms such as a runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing
- Pleurisy – Inflammation of the lining around the lungs.
- Pneumonia – A Viral or bacterial infection that inflames air sacs in one or both lungs, which may fill with fluid.
- Pneumothorax (Collapsed Lung) – Loss of lung space.
- Pulmonary Edema – Abnormal collection of fluid in lung tissue.
- Pulmonary Fibrosis – A Chronic disease where lungs become scarred and stiff.
- Pulmonary Vascular Disease – Disease affecting lungs and cardiac systems.
- Sinus Infection – Condition in which the cavities around the nasal passages become inflamed.
- Sleep Apnea – Disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep.
- Tuberculosis – Infection of the lungs caused by Mycobacterium.
You can download a copy of the Respiratory System information found on this page to keep for your