Natural asthma treatments contain a variety of herbs and other natural ingredients, but commonly include omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium and antioxidants. Other drug-free treatments and management strategies exist, such as controlling other illnesses that may be exacerbating asthma and avoiding smoke, mold and other irritants.
Asthma sufferers can reduce or eliminate their need for steroid-containing prescription medication through lifestyle changes and alternative therapies, asserts James Rouse, N.D. These changes include reducing exposure to cigarette smoke, indoor and outdoor pollution, and common allergens; exercising regularly; avoiding overly processed foods; and supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and antioxidants. He also names several herbal medicines, such as ma huang, lobelia and licorice, which should only be taken under the supervision of a doctor. These substances work by controlling inflammation, reducing asthma symptoms.
Dr. Andrew Weil, M.D. suggests dietary supplementation with ginger and tumeric, both of which have anti-inflammatory effects. As with James Rouse, he advocates for increased omega-3 fatty acid intake, as well as drinking plenty of water to keep lung secretions fluid.
WebMD lists drug-free management strategies for asthma, including managing GERD, sinusitis and allergic rhinitis that may be worsening asthma. Getting enough sleep, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising often and having a healthy diet are also listed as management techniques. WebMD also suggests keeping an asthma diary to track asthma symptoms, triggers and medications, as patterns over time could show previously unidentified triggers.