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Functional Medicine and the Treatment of Asthma

As the essence of functional medicine is to treat the individual and uncover all and every imbalance and dysfunction I see asthma as a symptom of a wide variety of possible causes. The key is to uncover the “root-cause” and not to just treat the symptoms with strong often harmful drugs. 

Encompassing the holistic paradigm of health, every health issue can have one of three etiologies, and an overlapping often of all three in different percentages. 

Let’s define asthma:  when the bronchial tubes of the upper lungs get clogged (usually with mucous) as the air passes to and fro a “wheeze” is created. So, asthma is basically a situation of slight to serious difficulty in breathing. 

Years ago, even mainstream medicine acknowledged a connection between the mind and body, or the psyche and physical issues, in very few conditions- asthma being one of them. It was termed a ‘psychosomatic” illness. 

When I interview a new patient with asthma, whether a young child or an adult, I am interested in discovering their diet, supplements and drug use, exercise program, and emotional/psychological stresses. 

I am always shocked when I find an asthmatic patient who was given medication by their conventional doctor and yet consumed dairy products and wheat products without restriction. I recently saw a revised edition of a book I read 40 years ago called “The Mucous less |Diet’ by Dr. Arnold Ehret, M.D. He espoused the cause of disease, and especially asthma, is an excess of mucous in the diet. Dairy and wheat are the main cause of excessive, gluey, cloggy mucous. So, I will recommend a specific diet for my patients; both avoidance and inclusions. Also, supplements such as magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin A, herbs such as fenugreek and comfrey, and others. My treatments include spinal adjustments to free up nerve impingements, tight muscles and then the airways, acupuncture/acupressure and other modalities. 

In the physical realm, I would check the spine for scoliosis or subluxations in the upper thoracic region (upper back). I check for muscle spasms and ask questions regarding accidents or sleeping habits. 

You can learn more about the natural treatment of asthma in my video here:

Lastly, again, I try to discover mental, emotional stresses, previous traumas, etc. I have several methods of “emotional release” and recommend the patient to read and listen to a variety of great stuff, from CBT, The Journey, to quantum physics.

If you would like to discuss your personal case with Dr. Bek you can request a consultation here: