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Health and Wellness
5 Supplements for Respiratory Health
Medically reviewed by Kristina Diaz, RRT • April 15, 2024

5 Supplements for Respiratory Health

Respiratory health is a key part of overall wellness and is something which becomes particularly important during certain times of the year. In many ways, however, enjoying proper respiratory function means supporting this vital system year round. Let’s consider what respiratory health means and how your system can benefit from supplements for respiratory health.

What is Respiratory Health?

Respiratory health is a broad subject which describes the proper function of the pulmonary system.1 For our purposes, we’ll be using the term to describe not only breathing well, but also related aspects of wellness which can be impacted by environmental factors. These respiratory challenges may be naturally occurring or man-made. In either case, before considering which supplements for respiratory health may work best for your particular needs, it’s worth making sure we have a clear idea of the causes of respiratory challenges.

Causes of Respiratory Discomfort

Challenges to respiratory health can vary by the season and by the region in which you live. Here are some common causes of respiratory discomfort faced by both adults and children in the United States divided between man-made and naturally occurring challenges:

Man-made causes of respiratory challenges

  1. Smoking tobacco or inhaling second-hand tobacco smoke2
  2. Generalized air pollution (smog, vehicle exhaust fumes, etc.)2

Naturally occurring causes of respiratory challenges

  1. Plant pollen3
  2. Dust3
  3. Mold spores3
  4. Animal dander3

The Best Supplements for Respiratory Health

With these potential challenges in mind, which supplements are best for respiratory health? Here’s a quick list of some of the top supplements to consider for year-round respiratory wellness:

  • Swanson NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine)—this potent antioxidant amino acid supports respiratory function by helping to replenish glutathione. Glutathione is a critical component of the body’s defense system, especially as relates to respiratory challenges.
  • Swanson Ultimate Respiratory Defense with NAC and Quercetin—a convenient combination formula, this supplement delivers the antioxidant powers of NAC and quercetin to support healthy lungs and proper immune function any time of year. While NAC works to help the body replenish glutathione, quercetin is a potent bioflavonoid that can support healthy cellular signaling to promote overall immune function.
  • Swanson Quercetin—delivering 475 mg per veggie capsule, this supplement offers a higher potency of the antioxidant bioflavonoid to bolster your body’s defenses against oxidative stress and support proper immune function for respiratory health.
  • Swanson Quercetin & Bromelain—expertly crafted to support seasonal immune system function and promote respiratory health, this formula delivers all the benefits of quercetin along with 156 mg of bromelain per serving. Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapples which has been linked to nasal and sinus wellness, a key factor in respiratory health.
  • Swanson Lung Essentials—powered by a blend of plant- and mushroom-based wellness allies, this combination formula has been expertly designed to support seasonal immune system function and vibrant respiratory health in the tradition of ancient Chinese herbalists.

Which Vitamin is Good for Respiratory Health?

Vitamin C is a well-known and potent antioxidant which has been linked to supporting respiratory health in both the short and long term. This vitamin has been observed in clinical research to promote respiratory comfort by supporting healthy immune function while defending against oxidative stress.4

How to Choose the Right Supplement for You

Choosing the best supplements for respiratory health is easier than you may have thought. With a clearer understanding of your particular respiratory needs and the causes for any challenges you’re experiencing, there are many helpful supplements to choose from. As with all supplements, just remember to check with your healthcare provider before adding to your general health routine.

With these and other science-backed supporters on your side, discover for yourself just how good it can feel to get out and enjoy your favorite seasonal activities once again. With the right supplement for respiratory health, the sky’s the limit!

You be well, now. 

Swanson

Medically reviewed by Kristina Neumeyer

About Kristina Diaz, RRT
Kristina Neumeyer is a registered respiratory therapist (RRT) specializing in emergency and critical care. She started her career in Saginaw, MI in 2009 and moved to Lakeland, FL in 2011 to work at a hospital in central Florida. She's currently employed at the second-busiest emergency department in the nation. She works directly with patients, treating respiratory diseases like COPD, asthma, lung cancer, cystic fibrosis, and Covid-19, among others. She's also a certified primal health coach through the Primal Health Coach Institute.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Sources

1. Respiratory Health. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. Read source

2. Respiratory. National Institutes of Health. Read source

3. Seasonal Challenges. Mayo Clinic. Read source

4. Vitamin C. Journal of International Medical Research. Read source

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