Nutrition can affect lung conditions like asthma and COPD (emphysema and bronchitis). Both conditions are aggravated by inflammation. Food choices that reduce inflammation and regulate the immune response can help. Also, maintaining a healthy weight reduces the work of breathing.
Most authorities recommend eating more vegetables and fruits. These are high in nutrients like carotenoids and vitamins like A, C and E. Foods high in vitamin D like fortified milk, orange juice, mushrooms, eggs and salmon are also helpful. Some studies suggest curcumin found in turmeric and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids (like fatty fish, walnuts, flax and soy) are beneficial.
Foods to avoid include sugars, especially sugar-sweetened beverages and fructose sweeteners. Processed foods containing artificial ingredients and foods high in sulfite are best avoided. If you have any food allergies or sensitivities, best to stay away from those. Some studies suggest salt and high sodium foods may also aggravate breathing.