It is now known that Covid-19, which is a respiratory system-related disease, weakens the lungs of those who contract it. The pollution and dust while frequently stepping out can make the breathing process difficult for many.
According to Dr Partap Chauhan, Director, Jiva Ayurveda, the chemical in the smog gets deposited within the respiratory tract and causes symptoms like wheezing, breathlessness, suffocation, and heaviness in the chest.
"This is caused by the accumulation of Kapha Dosha in the body. Other than an increase in air pollution, tobacco smoking, use of coal for cooking, construction work and indoor pollutants (radon gas) are all causes of bronchitis, cancer, and other serious respiratory disorders."
"Air pollution aggravates the imbalance in Prana Vata and Shleshaka Kapha, which leads to the production of shleshma (mucus) and settles in the nasal area and clogs the channels of the sinuses. Due to the underlying imbalance in Prana Vata and Shleshaka Kapha, Sinus is caused," he adds.
The ayurveda expert lists herbs and Ayurvedic home remedies that protect and strengthen your lungs and keep your respiratory system healthy:
Kavala (oil pulling): Kavala or Gandusha is a process of gargling with oil. Usually, sesame oil is used for the process. This process cleanses the throat of phlegm, clears the sinuses and reduces the risk of allergic reaction in the respiratory system. Take a small amount of any edible oil, sesame or sunflower, and swish around your mouth for a few minutes and spit out. Repeat this process every morning for a few days.
Lung Toner Ayurvedic Tea: Take 3-4 tulsi leaves, a small amount of mulethi and pipali, blend and boil them in water until it is reduced to half. Strain the water in a cup and add mishri (cane sugar). Sip the tea warm. This will cleanse the lungs and liquefy the Kapha.
Ghee in Nostrils: Dip your little finger in liquid ghee and massage each nostril. Sniff deeply allowing the ghee to get inside the nasal passage. You may also lie down and pour 2-3 drops in each nostril. This helps in clearing the nasal congestion and balancing Kapha.
Vasp Swedana (inhaling steam): Mucosal secretions produced in the nose and throat expel pollutants, smoke and dirt particles that are inhaled daily. Vasp Swedana is an Ayurvedic process that keeps the mucosal layer healthy. You can do it at home; in 1 litre of steaming water, add 2-3 drops of Eucalyptus or peppermint oil and inhale the steam.
Pranayama: Pranayama helps in increasing the capacity of the lungs and boosts your immunity to fight lung diseases. Practicing Kapalbhati helps in relieving shortness of breath, congestion in the chest and clears mucus in the air passage. Ujjayi, Shitali and Anulom Vilom are some other Pranayama techniques that will help in keeping your lungs healthy.