When you can’t breathe, nothing else matters.®
National President and CEO, American Lung Association
“While there are things that impact our lung health daily, like secondhand smoke, pollution, and respiratory infections, there are actions we can take to keep our lungs healthy.”
Your lungs and breathing are essential parts of life; however, many people take their lung health for granted until something goes wrong.
Unfortunately, too many people across the United States are impacted by lung disease. When combined with lung cancer and respiratory diseases like COVID-19 and influenza, lung disease is a leading cause of death in America, and there are 34 million Americans living with a chronic lung disease like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
While there are things that impact our lung health daily, like secondhand smoke, pollution, and respiratory infections, there are actions we can take to keep our lungs healthy.
Here are five ways to love your lungs:
- Stop smoking and vaping: If you smoke cigarettes or vape, the best thing you can do for your lungs is to start your journey to quit. Experts recommend combining counseling and FDA-approved quit medication for the best chances of quitting smoking and vaping for good.
- Get all recommended respiratory vaccines: Illnesses like the flu, COVID-19, and pneumococcal pneumonia can have a serious impact on your lungs, so it is critical to make sure you are up to date on all vaccinations.
- If you are eligible, get screened for lung cancer: If you smoke or used to smoke, talk to your healthcare provider about lung cancer screening. Learn if you are eligible at SavedbytheScan.org.
- Exercise to maintain healthy lungs: When you are physically active, your heart and lungs work together to supply the additional oxygen your muscles demand. As your physical fitness improves, your body becomes more efficient at getting oxygen into the bloodstream and transporting it to the working muscles.
- Do your part to improve air quality: Air pollution impacts people living with lung disease but can also cause lung cancer. You can protect your own health by checking daily air pollution forecasts on AirNow.gov, and you can reduce your contributions to air pollution by walking or biking instead of driving and not burning trash or leaves.
As part of our mission to ensure all Americans breathe easier, we are inviting companies, consumers, and lung health champions everywhere to join our Lung Love campaign.