Asthma is a heterogeneous pulmonary disease that has constantly increased in prevalence over the past several decades. Primary symptoms include airway constriction, airway hyperresponsiveness, and airway remodeling with additional symptoms such as shortness of breath, wheezing, and difficulty breathing. Allergic asthma involves chronic inflammation of the lungs, and the rise in its yearly diagnosis is potentially associated with the increased global consumption of foods similar to the western diet. Thus, there is growing interest into the link between diet and asthma symptoms, with mounting evidence for an important modulatory role for dietary lipids. Lipids can act as biological mediators in both a proinflammatory and proresolution capacity. Fatty acids play key roles in signaling and in the production of mediators in the allergic and inflammatory pathways. The western diet leads to a disproportionate ω-6:ω-3 ratio, with drastically increased ω-6 levels. To counteract this, consumption of fish and fish oil and the use of dietary oils with anti-inflammatory properties such as olive and sesame oil can increase ω-3 and decrease ω-6 levels. Increasing vitamin intake, lowering LDL cholesterol levels, and limiting consumption of oxidized lipids can help reduce the risk of asthma and the exacerbation of asthmatic symptoms. These dietary changes can be achieved by increasing intake of fruits, vegetables, nuts, oily fish, seeds, animal-related foods (eggs, liver), cheeses, grains, oats, and seeds, and decreasing consumption of fried foods (especially fried in reused oils), fast foods, and heavily processed foods.
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