The Anti-Asthma Diet

Grains Guard Against Wheezing

Americans eat about 50% more meat and poultry than they did in the 1930s, according to the USDA. Researchers believe that this shift to a meat-centered diet may be affecting asthma rates. "In our study, children who got the most calories from cereal and rice and the most protein from cereals, nuts, starch, and vegetables were the ones most protected against wheezing," explains Philippa Ellwood, research manager for ISAAC.

Breath-Saving Strategy: Downsize your family's meat portions and then make sure your children 2 and over get about six servings of grains daily -- half of them should be whole grains like oatmeal or whole-wheat bread. For kids 2 to 3, a serving is 1/2 slice of bread, 2 or 3 crackers, 1/3 cup dry cereal, or 1/4 cup cooked grains like cereal, rice, or pasta. At ages 4 to 6, the dry cereal portion increases to 1/2 cup and cooked grains to 1/3 cup. Kids 7 to 10 jump to 1 slice of bread, 1/2 cup cooked grains, 3/4 to 1 cup dry cereal, or 4 or 5 crackers.

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Copyright © 2001. Reprinted with permission from the November 2001 issue of Child magazine.

All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

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