Seriously, what's going on? While observing World Asthma Day today, we have to ask a few highly charged questions about asthma.
In early May of each year, the Global Initiative For Asthma (GINA) has an event to raise the awareness of asthma. Their theme is "You Can Control Asthma." I find it interesting GINA's approach is "control" rather than "stop" asthma. But that seems to be what the medical community is happy doing, just controlling asthma rather than finding a cure.
Asthma is a Growing and Deadly Problem
According to the CDC, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation and the American Lung Association, asthma is a growing problem. Their numbers tell us 24.6 million Americans have asthma, 7.1 million are children. Worldwide the number swells to 300 million. Worse yet, the the number of people with asthma grew by 12% over the last 10 years.
Asthma is a deadly disease. The data show 3,300 Americans die each year from asthma, about nine people everyday. Asthma is a contributing factor in an additional 7,000 deaths each year. Worldwide the death rate is 230,000 people every year. More scary is the number of deaths due to asthma has grown by 50% since 1980.
Asthma Takes an Economic Toll
The total worldwide economic impact of asthma is $56 billion between medical costs, work absenteeism and lost productivity.
Here in the US medical costs alone are $18 billion, $6 billion of which is spent on medication. Annually, asthma results in 11.5 million doctor visits and 480,000 hospital visits. A person with asthma will spend on average $3,300 each year in medical costs with some paying as much as $9,000.
Asthma plays a huge role in work absenteeism and lost productivity. It's estimated here in the US, 15 million work days are lost due to asthma with a price tag of $3 billion.
Asthma Takes A Toll On Child Education
Asthma is one of the leading causes of school absenteeism. Here in the US 14.4 million school days are missed each year due to asthma. Every day, 36,000 children miss school due to an asthma attack.
What's Going On?
Hopefully, when you see the asthma numbers it makes you wonder what's going on. We've been researching asthma for over a century. Billions have been poured into this research and billions are spent each year to control asthma. Very little has changed in treatment protocols for decades. Yet, people keep getting sick and more and more people are dying from it.
There is Hope Through Breath Training
The alternative medicine community is not doing much better. For the most part they take the "control your asthma" route through supplements and devices.
For over 60 years, one alternative modality has shown asthma can be controlled without drugs, supplements or devices and in many cases relieved. This modality is breath training.
Breath training has been around since 1952 and has successfully helped 100's of thousand of people with asthma, myself included. Eight western medical studies show on average a 90% reduction in reliever medication and a 49% - 92% reduction of inhaled steroids. All studies show a marked improvement in quality of life.
Dr. Robert Cowie, a leading Canadian pulmonologist and leader of the Calgary based breath training trial was amazed at the results saying:
"There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that (breath training) works. The results of this study show it is a wonderful adjunct to conventional treatment for asthma. We had super results that no one else has been able to match even with the best medication."
Four governments, Russia, Great Britain, Australia and the US, have validated breath training as safe and effective. Even GINA has given it's blessing to breath training as an asthma treatment, assigning it an “A” rating.
It's clear conventional medicine is not reducing the incidents and deaths due to asthma. Perhaps it's time we take a closer look at breath training and stop the human and economic toll asthma takes. Today, World Asthma Day, would be a good day to start.