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Lung India Official publication of Indian Chest Society  
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Year : 2007  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 105-114

Nutrition and Asthma

Department of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Medicine, Pt. B.D. Sharma, PGIMS, Rohtak., India

Correspondence Address:
K B Gupta
Department of Tuberculosis and Respiratory Medicine, Pt. B.D. Sharma, PGIMS, Rohtak.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Increase in the asthma prevalence in many countries over the recent decades, highlights the need for a greater understanding of the risk factors for asthma. Be­cause asthma is the result of interaction between genetic and environmental fac­tors, increasing prevalence is certainly the result of changes in environmental fac­tors because of process of wesernization. That is the reason for higher prevalence in countries where a traditional to a westernized lifestyle occurred earlier. This increasing prevalence has affected both rural and urban communities, suggesting that local environmental factors such as exposure to allergens or industrial air pol­lutions are not the sole cause. In the last few years, nutrition has represented an important conditioning factor of many cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and chronic pulmonary diseases. So it has been hypothesized that dietary constituents influence the immune system and thus, may also be actively involved in the onset of asthma and other allergic diseases. Dietary constituents can play beneficial as well as det­rimental role in asthma. The possible role of diet in the development of asthma can be described as follows: first, a food allergen can cause asthma. Second, there is role of breast-feeding for prevention of asthma later in life. Third, a low intake of antioxidative dietary constituents might be a risk factor for asthma. Moreover, role of cations such as sodium, potassium and magnesium has been described in development of asthma. Finally, intake of fatty acids specially the role of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids play important role in cause of asthma.

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