Eating junk food is one of the main reasons for gaining weight. But if you have asthma, there is an additional factor – consuming a steroid inhaler. There is confusion among asthma people: Do asthma inhalers cause weight gain?
Asthma inhalers have no proven track record of causing weight gain. But oral steroids can let you gain weight. An asthma inhaler consists of a small amount of steroids that don’t impact gaining weight. Instead, inhalers help people living with asthma feel better.
This comprehensive guide will look into the correlation between asthma inhalers and weight gain. You will also learn what to do if you have asthma and are overweight; what exercises to do for weight loss.
Do Asthma Inhalers Cause Weight Gain?
In order to know whether the asthma inhalers cause weight gain, we need to know the properties of the inhaler’s medicine.
Asthma inhalers come with a canister containing the medication. By pressing the pump, a person can inhale the medicine. The medicine for asthma is a type of beta-agonist known as albuterol.
This medicine relaxes the bronchial cells in the lungs. It also allows more oxygen to flow through the bronchial tube by opening the airways. Along with the albuterol, the steroid is another ingredient in the inhaler. The responsibility of steroids is to ease inflammation.
Most inhalers use corticosteroids, which is a common type of steroids. Some inhalers also consist of other steroids. A sufferer needs to take dosage based on the doctor's prescription and pump type.
Now the steroid used for treating inflammation can alter the metabolism and increase your appetite. These side effects can be higher if you take a high dose regularly.
However, there is an argument regarding the effect of steroids on a person’s body because the amount of steroids in an inhaler is too small. With that small quantity, steroids can’t affect a person’s appetite. After inhaling the steroid, it directly goes into the lungs, and a minimal amount mixes with the bloodstream.
This minimal amount will not let you gain weight as the steroid tablet does.
Moreover, other factors play a vital role when it comes to weight gain. For instance, many sufferers stop doing physical activities to fear an asthma attack. As a result, they gain weight gradually.
The chance of weight gain due to inhalers is significantly minimal. Weight gain especially happens due to mismanagement of symptoms. A person with asthma can have an active and normal life by taking the right medicine.
What Do I Do If I Have Asthma and Am Overweight or Obese?
If you have asthma and are overweight or obese and plan to reduce your weight, you need to be careful while choosing the exercise type. Select such exercises that don’t make it difficult for you to breathe.
Choose Low-Impact Workouts
Running or aerobics are unsuitable for people with asthma. Yoga or swimming is the best option for overweight asthma sufferers. Remember to start exercising slowly. Gradually increase your speed to go for a longer workout.
For example, if you plan to do yoga for 1 hour, start with 10 minutes. While swimming, begin with 5 laps instead of 10 laps.
Remember, if you feel anxious or short of breath at any point of exercising, stop doing yoga or swimming for the day. Try next or other days.
Check Pollen Counts Before Exercising
- Check pollen counts.
- Start exercising when your pollen count is low.
- Make sure your surroundings are pollutant-free. This may limit you from exercising in the living room or gym.
Avoid exercising in dusty, moldy areas or where pets are present. Sadly, grass and pollen might make it challenging for you to work out outside if you have severe asthma.
Keep Inhaler with You
Your doctor might have prescribed an inhaler; keep it with you in an easily accessible area. If you feel asthma while exercising, use the inhaler. You can also use the airphysio device in the case of short breath.
Some doctors advise using the inhaler before the exercise. If you also prefer it, consult your doctor and follow what your doctor prescribes for precaution.
Maintain Healthy Diet
Plan for losing weight is a great goal. But for this, you have to be determined, patient and well-planned. Without a healthy diet, you can’t achieve your goal. So, avoid eating junk food. Start eating healthy foods like vegetables, fish, fruits, lean meats, etc. Also, don’t drink tea with sugar; stop eating all foods that have sugar.
When you maintain a healthy diet, you will start losing weight despite having asthma. However, it would always be best to consult a doctor before finalizing your diet plan.
How to Avoid Weight Gain?
The only rule to avoid weight gain for people with asthma is to eat less. But the truth is, saying is always easy; doing is challenging.
Well, you can follow other different ideas from below.
- Add Lots of Veggies in Your Meal: Water-filled, crunchy vegetables such as carrots or celery are suitable options to add to your food list.
- Include Whole Grain Foods: Whole grain bread and brown rice are one of the best food items that significantly help lose weight. Sadly, most people worry about carbs; you can eat many of these 2 food items without worrying about gaining weight.
- Drink 4 – 5 liters of Water in a Day: Many of us remain inattentive about drinking the required water. Also, we drink ice water instead of normal water. The truth is ice water is bad for health and increases your weight. Drink room temperature water which is better than ice water. You can also drink green or herbal tea, which will help you feel full.
- Walk, walk and walk: People don’t want to walk nowadays. Even for short distances, they want to use the vehicle. Don’t forget about walking. It is great for losing weight. Also, you can enjoy the natural beauty and breath fresh air when walking early in the morning. Walking will help you cut fat.
- Don’t Avoid Exercise: Don’t think that you can’t do exercise if you have asthma. Find the right exercise and suitable environment for you by consulting your doctor.
- Never Stop Taking Medicine: We have a bad habit; when we feel better, we stop taking medicine. But asthma can trigger anytime. If you decide not to take the prescribed medicine, the situation can go out of hand anytime. So, never think of stopping taking medicine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does Steroid Inhaler Use Cause Obesity?
There is no proven track record that steroid inhalers cause obesity. It is because the amount of steroids in the inhaler is very little, and it has a minimal effect on the bloodstream. Obesity mainly happens to asthma sufferers when they stop doing exercise and sit idle on the desk or bed. However, obesity may happen if you take a high dose of steroid inhalers. Generally, physicians don’t prescribe high-dose inhalers.
Do Inhaled Steroids Increase Appetite?
Yes, your appetite can increase when you consume an excessive dose of steroid inhalers. Usually, 2 – 3 times a day is the prescribed dose from a doctor. If you decide to go 4 – 5 doses of steroid inhaler a day on your own, you will definitely have an increased appetite.
Do Asthma Inhalers Increase Blood Sugar?
2.5 mg of albuterol has no clinical record of increasing blood sugar in CFRD or DM patients. But still, there are risk factors if you take a high amount of asthma inhalers for the long term without a prescription.
Do Asthma Inhalers Cause Weight Gain in Kids?
No, an asthma inhaler has a low dose of steroids, letting your kid gain weight. But steroid tablets can make you feel hungry more than before. Thus, eating more will make you gain weight, and an inhaler won’t.
Should I Stop Taking My Asthma Inhaler to Avoid Weight Gain?
Undoubtedly, NO. You mustn’t stop inhaling asthma inhalers to avoid weight gain. Instead, add more veggies, whole grain, brown rice, herbs, and green or herbal tea to your food list. Drink 4 – 5 liters of water a day, and regular exercise is the key to reducing weight. Stopping an asthma inhaler is not a good solution to avoid weight gain.
Asthma inhalers don’t cause weight gain. Consuming junk food, oral steroids, and avoiding exercise are the main reasons for gaining weight. Being overweight increases the risk of asthma, and controlling asthma becomes difficult for overweight people.
We discussed a few tips on how to control the weight of an overweight person with asthma. We believe you can control both your weight and asthma by following those tips. Having asthma doesn’t mean exercise is prohibited. You can choose between yoga and swimming to reduce your weight; make sure to decide on the exercise plan after consulting your physician.
Hopefully, all your confusion is removed regarding do asthma inhalers cause weight gain? Good food habits and maintaining prescribed medicine will help you breathe and control weight simultaneously.