Improving respiratory health is vital in the fight against the COVID pandemic

2022 had a stressful start for many Australians with Omicron ravaging the population.

In our 3rd year of COVID, the virus is continuing to move its way in the community causing catastrophic workforce and supply chain issues, as well as health and wellbeing concerns.

The approach to the virus has changed with many people now feeling that getting the virus is inevitable and that it is important to galvanise their wellbeing against COVID.

One area that people are turning to is respiratory health as the virus attacks the lungs.

Whether you have not yet had COVID, you have it, or you are recovering from it, or you are experiencing ongoing long COVID health issues, focusing on respiratory health is critical.

WellO2 is an innovative breathing exercise device invented in Finland that strengthens and cleanses the lungs through counter-pressure breathing and steam inhalation.

The innovative double body structure of the device ensures even steam formation when in use and protects from exposure to hot water.

Most people don’t realise that you can actually improve your respiratory wellbeing by enhancing your lung health through daily breathing exercises and changes to your lifestyle.

A stronger and more galvanised respiratory system is less susceptible to the impact of viruses and other illnesses and is more likely to recover more quickly from sickness.


Simple tips to improve respiratory health 

Easy everyday things you can do

Improving your lung health during the day over time will lead to a stronger respiratory system that is more resilient. The good news is that there are many simple things you can introduce to your lifestyle today that can start making a difference right away.

Eating healthy foods rich in antioxidants is key to improving your lung health. Foods that are high in antioxidants help to neutralise free radicals that can destroy lung cells.

When shopping, pick up fruits and vegetables rather than processed foods. Other common antioxidant staples include dark chocolate, grapes, sweet potatoes and green tea.

Why not try an iced green tea on a hot day in place of a normal iced lemon tea.

Keep hydrated and happy

Our body is made up of water and hydration helps cells and organs to function well. 

When unwell with a virus, staying hydrated can help the skin and mucous cell membrane to act as an important barrier to prevent bacteria from entering the body.

It can help to reduce nasal irritation when coughing, sneezing and even just breathing.

Try and maintain a positive and happy mindset.

Happiness is good for your health as it helps to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, lowers your blood pressure and also enables better sleep, amongst other things.

Don’t place extra strain on your body as you need it in optimum health to fight COVID.

Frequent exercise

Frequent exercise comes to mind when talking about improving lung health. 

Keeping your body physically active means that your body will be working well to supply oxygen to your muscles to keep you going, making your heart and lungs stronger.

Even if hitting the gym proves overwhelming for you, the important thing is to just start. Add a stretching routine to your day as soon as you wake up, or take a walk during lunch.

Use that television time as a time when you can be active while watching your favourite shows. Setting smaller fitness goals can help you get started and keep you motivated.

An added benefit of exercise is weight loss. Just a 10% reduction in body weight is enough to have a positive impact on health issues like sleep apnoea and reduce snoring.

Improve indoor air quality

Roughly 1 in 5 Australians suffer from hayfever symptoms in the warmer months. 

Improving the indoor air quality around you can reduce hay fever symptoms without resorting to medication. Investing in a good quality air purifier with HEPA filters will ensure you breathe easily as the filters will remove many irritants and impurities from the air.

This will also help your overall lung function which is critically essential when an individual is seeking to strengthen their respiratory health in response to the COVID-19 virus. 

Strengthen your lungs and airways

Just like any other part of the body, our lungs and airways benefit from exercise as well.

Because we breathe involuntarily, we assume that this keeps our respiratory system in good shape. We can strengthen and support our respiratory system like lungs and airways.

Innovative products such as the WellO2, which is known as the Nordic Lung Shield, are specifically designed so that they can help us to strengthen our lungs and airways.

The WellO2 is a non-medical breathing exercise device that can help people who have common breathing problems for example sleep apnea, asthma and nasal congestion, as well as other breathing issues that arise as a result of virus infections.

It opens and purifies the airways with warm steam and counter pressure breathing.

The WellO2 device helps to exercise the muscles in your lungs to achieve better lung health, while the warm steam moistens the linings of the airways and reduces swelling.

The warm steam can also help reduce nasal congestion through draining the nose, so that you can breathe more freely. WellO2 uses just normal drinkable water to produce steam.

By incorporating it into your daily routine for five to 10 minutes per day, it can help increase breathing efficiency and strengthen your lung muscles. It’s highly recommended for asthma sufferers as WellO2’s warm steam therapy soothes the airways.

Recent studies have shown that our lungs can actually regenerate over time.

Smoking is a lifestyle choice that many are now choosing to reduce or quit, meaning that smokers can regain better lung health. Steam therapy, for example through using WellO2 is also a recommended pathway to improving and regenerating lung health.

Jonas Pilhage is the regional director for WellO2 in Australia and New Zealand. Known as the Nordic Lung Shield.