Coffee and Asthma
Let’s say you are off on a vacation and ran out of your rescue inhaler. What will you do if you have an asthma attack?
Surely, you’ll call for an ambulance and try to get to the hospital. But what can you do in the meantime?
The answer is to start drinking a few cups of coffee, according to the Asthma Foundation in Victoria.
How Could a Food Stop an Asthma Attack?
You already know that different foods have different effects on the body. Some foods are high in antioxidants like berries; other foods are loaded with B vitamins like blackstrap molasses and liver. All foods contain medicinal ingredients that can act in different ways on the body. For example, carrots contain beta-carotene, which is helpful for vision while parsley contains substances that are diuretic in nature.
What is it that coffee contains that is so helpful to asthma? It’s actually the caffeine in coffee that has a direct action on the bronchioles, opening them up quickly and making it easier to breathe.
If You Already Drink Coffee…
Drinking coffee regularly is probably not a good idea, say the experts, as it’s possible that regular coffee drinking may not cause the same effect. There may be a rebound effect when the caffeine wears off.
Know the Caffeine Content of Foods
With this in mind, it’s important to know what other foods have caffeine in them. Chocolate does have caffeine in it, and according to the Asthma Foundation, two chocolate bars would have a similar effect. No one is saying exactly how much caffeine you need to stop an asthma attack but if you take a look at the difference in caffeine between coffee and chocolate, you will find quite a difference in the amount of caffeine.
Here’s a list of caffeine foods that you might have to use as a substitute. Choose the foods that have the highest amount of caffeine on the list, not the lowest:
|Coffee, regular||95 mg per cup|
|Espresso coffee||64 mg per ounce|
|Decaf coffee||20 mg per cup|
|Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate||14 mg per square|
|Hershey’s chocolate bars||9 mg per bar|
|Hershey’s kisses||1 mg per piece|
|Hershey’s Special Dark Bar||18 mg per 1.45 oz|
|Jolt Gum||45 mg per stick|
|Kit Kat bars||6 mg per bar|
|M&M’s chocolate candy||9 mg per package|
|Oreo Cookies||1.3 mg per cookie|
|Penguin mints||7 mg per mint|
|Perky Jerky||35 mg per ounce|
|Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups||4 mg per cup|
|Starbuck’s Coffee Ice Cream||60 mg per 8 oz cup|
|VE2 Energy Gum||35 mg per piece|
|Wrigley’s Alert Energy Gum||40 mg per piece|
|Sunkist Orange Soda, 12 oz||41 mg|
Sometimes the answers to health emergencies are simple. An asthma attack could be one of those times.