Canadian Lung Association Blog

Blog Archives

Marijuana: What are the lung health risks?

The legalization of cannabis has been permeating Canadian conversations for couple of years. Now, it seems that the future of legal cannabis is just around the corner. The main thing we know about cannabis is there are many questions that have yet to be answered. The Lung Association is working to ensure more research is done on the long term effects of cannabis. Many of the harms can be associated with smoking cannabis as evidence suggests that frequent cannabis use can lead to chronic bronchitis later in life. The best thing to do if you want to use cannabis is

Posted in Lung Health, Smoking & Tobacco

5 Things you can do this Valentine’s Day to show your lungs some love

Valentine’s Day is upon us and with it the hordes of chocolates, cards and flowers. But we want to challenge you to celebrate a little differently. Stretch it out. Go to a yoga class to celebrate your lungs. Deep breathing has proven itself to be a great way to exercise your lungs. This not only helps to reduce stress, it helps to increase your lung capacity. Laugh it up. Go to a comedy show. Laughter may not be the best medicine if you have a broken leg, but it’s certainly a great way to show your lungs some love. Laughter

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Posted in Lung Health

Do you have a cold, flu or pneumonia?

Our ability to breathe is often taken for granted until it’s compromised. When wintertime illnesses take the air out of your lungs, it helps to know what you have so you can treat it accordingly. While your healthcare provider is the best source of information for your specific disease, here is a cheat sheet from The Lung Association to help you sort through the symptoms and get back to breathing. Common cold. This is the most common respiratory illness and the least severe one. The common cold is contagious and since it’s caused by a virus, no antibiotic will treat

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Posted in Flu, Lung Health, Uncategorized

Dr. Veronica Marcoux, Asthma Camper → Lung Doctor

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As a child, you attended The Lung Association asthma camp.  Tell us what camp was like for you and your experience with asthma. I really enjoyed the time that I spent at the asthma camp! It was a great location right on Diefenbaker Lake, and swimming every day was the highlight, especially on windy days that made for some big waves. There were always a ton of activities planned, and the counsellors were also a blast to be around. When I first started attending I’m fairly sure my asthma was not well controlled, and it was nice to have a

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Posted in Asthma, Lung Health, Stories

Lung health professional Jenna Jangalee shares personal allergy tips

Jenna

A lot of people struggle to get their allergies under control – including Vancouver Respiratory Therapist Jenna Jangalee who sat down to share a few tips with us. Do you find your allergies hard to control? I have allergies year-round, but they really act up in the spring when pollen is particularly high. I do my best to keep my allergies controlled, but even I occasionally struggle. What advice do you give patients? Allergy symptoms can make us feel like we’ve “lost the battle” against allergies, but there are always steps we can take to regain control. For myself, I

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Posted in Allergy, Asthma, Lung Health

Meet some of the volunteers we’ve counted on for years!

Sing, Mina, Jean and Nida - NVW2017

Our volunteers provide critical support that help us to carry out our mission of promoting lung health and managing and preventing lung disease. We simply couldn’t do what we do without them. We are particularly lucky to have a stable core of devoted in-house volunteers, some of whom have been with us for more than 20 years. Meet Mina, our staff volunteer coordinator as well as a few of our cherished volunteers, Sing, Jean and Nida. Sing has volunteered with us for 23 years, helping with work related to our Christmas Seals and other campaigns, and providing valued administrative support

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Posted in Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

Meet Volunteer Anne Kennedy Mitchell

Anne Kennedy Mitchell and Darcy Murdoch - NVW2017

Anne is the volunteer president of our Lung Association Better Breathers support group in New Westminster (also known as the New Westminster Puffers’ Club). During the week, Anne manages a dental clinic. In her spare time, she finds it rewarding to be of help to others, like herself, who often feel isolated and alone in coping with a chronic breathing problem. Anne has struggled with respiratory illness all her life. “I was eleven years old when I was diagnosed with asthma. It became progressively worse over time and in 2008, I was diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease),” she

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Posted in Asthma, COPD, Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

Meet Volunteer Ken Fisher

Ken Fisher and Gina Walton - NVW2017

When Ken retired in 2002, he found himself having trouble breathing. His doctor sent him to a COPD support group – which turned out to be the Langley BC Better Breathers group, run by the BC Lung Association. For the past 9 years, Ken’s been the volunteer leader of the group, which consists of a monthly support group with an invited guest speaker, and two exercise groups, each running 3 times per week. The goal of Better Breathers Groups are to help patients coping with chronic lung conditions (such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, asthma, and lung cancer) as well as their caregivers,

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Posted in COPD, Lung Health, Stories, volunteer

World health expert talks dirty

Nino Kunzli II

The BC Lung Association organizes an annual meeting of world authorities on health-damaging pollutants. At a recent meeting we spoke with visiting pollution expert Dr. Nino Künzli and asked, given we know dirty air poses risks to health, what can we advise people do to protect themselves? According to Künzli individuals and communities would benefit from thinking of the health risks in terms of ‘susceptibility’ – in other words – in terms of an individual’s likelihood of being adversely affected by exposure to health-damaging pollutants. How susceptible we are to pollution is affected by factors such as where we live,

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Posted in Air Quality, Lung Health, Research

How air pollution is messing with our genes

Student in air pollution study - blog

Air pollution can make it hard to breathe. It also can increase someone’s blood pressure and heart rate. Those problems are well known. Now research, in part funded by the BC Lung Association, suggests breathing diesel fumes can trigger another toxic change. It can inappropriately turn some genes on, while turning others off. Just two hours of exposure to diesel exhaust fumes can lead to fundamental health-related changes in biology by switching some genes on, while switching others off, according to researchers at UBC and Vancouver Coastal Health. The study involved putting volunteers in a polycarbonate-enclosed booth — about the

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Posted in Air Quality, Asthma, Lung Health