7th May 2023

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a condition which affects the airways (tubes) that carry air in and out of the lungs. Often people with asthma can describe it as trying to breathe through a straw. This is because asthma can cause the airways to narrow, swell and potentially produce extra mucus making it difficult to breathe. As we inhale we breathe in oxygen into our lungs. That oxygen travels in the blood and the cells in our bodies use it to function. When we exhale our lungs help us to get rid of carbon dioxide from our blood, which is a waste product. So you can see our lungs have a very important role. For some people with asthma it may be a nuisance or inconvenience but they can live reasonably normal lives, however for others asthma can be a major problem that interferes with activities of daily living and can be life threatening

Potential Causes of Asthma:

  • Family history – having a parent or sibling with asthma increases the risk of getting asthma.
  • Allergies – some people are more likely to develop allergies than others. There are also certain allergic conditions, such as eczema or hay fever, that are commonly linked to asthma
  • Viral respiratory infections – especially respiratory problems that are recurring in babies or children can cause them to develop asthma
  • Environmental exposures – there are certain things in the environment that can cause asthma such as wood dusts, chemical fumes, vapors and molds can cause asthma
  • Smoking – can cause asthma by irritating the airways.
  • Air pollution


  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Wheezing (more commonly when breathing out)
  • Trouble sleeping caused by shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing
  • Coughing or wheezing attacks that are worsened by a respiratory virus, such as a cold or the flu.


  • Medications – such as inhalers,
  • Avoid triggers when you can – such as air conditioning, cold air, mold exposure- keep your house clean and dust regularly.
  • Stay physically active
  • Regular breathing exercises
  • Natural and herbal remedies

Food and asthma:

If you have asthma, you may be curious about whether certain food choices could help manage some of your asthma symptoms. If you have a food allergy or intolerance your immune system often tends to overreact and go into defensive mode to certain proteins in food. This overreaction causes inflammation and in somecases this can result in asthma symptoms. Therefore, looking at the food you are putting into your mouth could help to manage asthma symptoms.


Benefits of plant-based kai for asthma:

Since chronic inflammation is one of the main characteristics of asthma, reducing inflammationwithin the body will be helpful. There are certain foods such as red meat, processed and fast foods, sugar and dairy products that research suggests can be associated with increased inflammation.

FastTrack is packed full of anti-inflammatory foods, a large amount of vegetables, whole grains and seafood (kaimoana). There is also no dairy, no meat and no sugar. We recommend trying FastTrack for at least an intensive 4 week period to see the positive effects on your asthma. Touch base if you have any questions at all, we’d love to have a korero (conversation) with you.

Research article links: