I’ve had allergies and asthma issues my whole life, and with those health issues comes some practical problems that a person needs to solve. One of those is expectorating phlegm / mucus / gunk from the lungs.
Just by stumbling around and experimenting for years, I’ve managed to come up with a few methods of clearing phlegm. These don’t require over the counter medication or drugs.
Caveat: these work for me. That doesn’t necessarily mean these exercises/ideas are right for you.
- Deep breathing sets a la the Wim Hoff Method with periods of breath holding with full lungs and with empty lungs
- A good long run followed by water with cayenne pepper, lemon juice and cane sugar, honey or maple syrup
- Peppermint tea with deep breaths and long breath holds, followed my forceful coughing
- Take a hot, steamy shower, and plug the tub so that water doesn’t get out. Drop essential oils like eucalyptus or peppermint into the tub and breath deeply. Don’t do breath-holds near water without supervision.
- Sprints. Practice holding your breath afterwards.
- Honeyed red wine (my favorite red wine is Montes Alpha Pinot Noir 2015) with cayenne pepper. Practice deep breaths and breath holding.
- Smoke some good clean marijuana and practice deep breaths and breath holds. For whatever reason, I tend to practice these breath holds more when I smoke. I’m not sure why. This is highly anecdotal, of course, but I tend to do a better job cleaning out my lungs when I smoke marijuana. Or maybe I’m just creating easy-to-expectorate phlegm with the smoking. Either way, I feel productive at my goal.
Combine any or all of these methods together for a potentially effective expectoration session and get that nasty phlegm out of your lungs so that you can breath in more good gas and generate more power.
Low stomach acid? Wondering why people keep recommending zinc supplements? I think I understand the mechanism by which zinc increases stomach acid levels, but it’s not as simple as “supplement zinc, increase stomach acid levels.” Here is my proposed mechanism:
Abstract: Low Zinc correlates with low levels of stomach acid and poor nutrient assimilation because of this low stomach acid level. I believe Zinc is the primary catalyst that pumps protons via the release of hydrogen from chloride in a reaction with hydrochloric acid .
Preface: Acid is the presence of protons in the absence of a neutralizing base. For the purpose of digesting and assimilating nutrients, an acidic environment is desired in the stomach. It is commonly accepted medical knowledge that this acidic environment is created by hydrochloric acid, or H-Cl, when a hydrogen proton is released from it’s unstable bond with Chloride.
Proposal: Zinc functions as a catalyst for this H-Cl reaction in the stomach. In the presence of zinc, hydrogen will be quickly released from it’s bond with Chloride, releasing protons into the stomach environment and helping to breakdown nutrients. See this youtube video demonstrating the reaction of Zinc with hydrochloric acid. I believe that there are proton-pumping sites in the stomach, occurring in the stomach lining in specific points where a protein matrix holds zinc ions in the fabric of the stomach for the purpose of reacting with hydrochloric acid, also secreted from the stomach lining.
Or perhaps the pancreas is responsible for the pumping of a zinc-containing enzyme into the stomach for the purpose of reacting with the hydrochloric acid pumped from the stomach lining.
Either way, the acidic environment is created from the mixing of zinc enzymes with hydrochloric acid, creating a very acidic solution for the digestion of nutrients.