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Asthma carbon footprint as big ‘as eating meat’

Asthma carbon footprint as big ‘as eating meat’

According to research just published, each metered-dose asthma inhaler produces on average between 150kg and 400kg of carbon dioxide a year, similar to the carbon footprint produced by regular consumption of meat. UK National Health Service (NHS) researchers recommended changing to environmentally friendly powder inhalers. The study findings were reported by the BBC on 30 October 2019.

What if it were possible to reduce your asthma symptoms and need for medication?

The Buteyko programme scores a double whammy in reducing carbon emissions by helping reduce need for medication and cutting human CO 2 emissions by reducing breathing minute volume, as the first Buteyko trial for asthma in the West demonstrated.

A blinded randomised trial comparing the efficacy of the Buteyko Breathing Method with conventional treatment of asthma was conducted at Mater Hospital in Brisbane, Australia in 1995.

The control group was on a regime of medical management, physiotherapy exercises, and asthma education and recorded no improvement.

The Buteyko Method group reduced bronchodilators by an average of 90%, with significant reduction in asthma symptoms and steroid medication. This was matched with improvements in quality of life scores. Significantly, there was no deterioration in lung function despite significant reduction in medication.

The main premise of the Buteyko Method is that asthma symptoms reduce in response to a reduction in hyperventilation and normalisation of the breathing pattern. At the start of the trial, all 39 participants demonstrated resting hyperventilation with minute volume MV 14 litres/min (Normal MV = 4-6 litres/min). At three months, the Buteyko group had reduced MV to 9.6 litres/min, while the control group was unchanged.

These results have been replicated in 12 published trials. However, this is the only trial where breathing minute volumes were tested.

Contact us on 09-360 6291 if you would like to control your asthma naturally and help reduce CO2 emissions 

We instruct our clients not to make any changes to their medication without first consulting their GP or specialist.



  1. Wilkinson AJK et al Open 2019;9: e028763. doi:

  2. BBC Asthma carbon footprint 'as big as eating meat' 

  3. Bowler SD, Green A, Mitchell, CA:  Buteyko breathing techniques in asthma: a blinded randomised controlled trial   Medical Journal of Australia 1998; 169: 575-578

Posted: Thu 31 Oct 2019


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