Seven ways to improve your lung capacity

© Getty Woman jogging 


By Elena Cresci ,  The Guardian

Stop smoking


You knew it was coming. Smoking damages the lungs, causing all sorts of problems, from lung cancer to respiratory disease. And it definitely affects your lung capacity. We have all seen the comparisons between healthy lungs and smokers’ lungs – according to the NHS, your lung capacity will have improved by at least 10% nine months after you quit smoking.

Do breathing exercises


Take a deep breath. No, really, it is that simple. There are a number of breathing exercises you can do that help keep your lungs healthy. One involves standing up with your back arched, breathing in and holding your breath for 10 seconds before exhaling – which can easily be done while watching the telly.

Consume enough vitamin D


A study released this year found that higher vitamin D levels were associated with better lung function. In the summer, depending on where you live, most people can get enough vitamin D from the sunshine. As the winter months approach and the sun disappears, it may be worth investing in vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D can also be found in foods such as oily fish, egg yolks and red meat.

Indulge your inner musician


If you are one of the many people who enjoy singing in the shower then you may be in luck, because singing can, apparently, aid lung capacity. According to the British Lung Foundation, it’s particularly helpful for patients with respiratory diseases. People with lung conditions told the foundation that controlling their breathing through singing helped manage their conditions. It is an area that is still being investigated. A study of 20 Indonesian students, published in 2015, found that the average lung capacity of choir singers was higher than that of non-singers.

Get active


One reason people want to increase their lung capacity is improve their sports performance. Helpfully, exercising regularly is one of the ways you can do that. As you should have learned in biology class, your lungs bring oxygen into the body and expel carbon dioxide – when you exercise, this process happens more quicker and makes your lungs stronger and more efficient over time.

Sort out your posture


Studies have shown that slumped sitting decreases lung capacity, because the position squeezes your lungs, making them smaller. So, for a very quick fix, sit up straight to get the best lung capacity you can. A good posture can help with back pain, too

© artisteer_Getty images
Also known as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is produced when sunlight is absorbed by your skin. It's essential for keeping your bones and muscles in shape and regulating your calcium and phosphate levels. But, according to government research, as many as 10 million people in the UK have low vitamin D stores during the dark winter months. The good news is, if you add these tasty foods to your diet, you can boost your sunshine vitamin!

Improve the air quality in your home


If you live in a city, air pollution is unavoidable. Even short-term air pollution can affect your lungs. But there are steps you can take to improve the air quality at home. Keeping it clean will help get rid of dust, while keeping house plants could help keep the air fresh, depending on the species. On days when pollution levels are low, be sure to open the windows.

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Milk
The white stuff comes with 115-124IU of vitamin D per 250ml, so drink up! Add it to your morning coffee, sip it straight or whizz it up with fruit in a smoothie. 🥛🍌🍎🍋


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Forti fiegd Orange juice

A delicious glass of OJ is packed with 100IU of vitamin D per glass, so don't forget to drink orange juice! 🍊


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Mackerl

This tasty little fish comes with a whopping 345IU of vitamin D per 100g, so grill it up! 🐟


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Eggs

Just one egg contains 25IU of the sunshine vitamin, so get munching! Eggs are delicious poached, fried, scrambled, boiled... the possibilities are eggcellent. 🥚 🥚 🥚


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Codliver oil

Serve yourself 5ml of codliver oil for a healthy 1360IU dose of vitamin D! Easy peasy. ☀️


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Mushrooms

With 7IU of vitamin D per 100 grams, it's worth adding them to your salads, stir-fry, pasta sauce, or cooked brekkie! 😋


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Sardines in oil

Sardines come with 500IU of vitamin D per 100g, so don't forget to include these in your diet! 🐟🐟🐟


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Fortified Cereals

A hearty bowl of cereal contains between 55 - 154 IU per 170g, not a bad choice for a healthy breakfast. 🦋

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Salmon

Everyone loves a healthy slab of salmon, and with 360IU of vitamin D per 100g, you can't lose. 🐠🐠🐠

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Beef

Beef up your vitamin D stores with a 3 oz steak for a healthy 42 IU dose of sunshine vitamin! 🐄🐄🐄



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