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Pulmonary Function Testing
By Ronald Steriti, ND, PhD

Tahoma Clinic now offers spirometry to measure lung function.

Twenty years of clinical research, all points to the same thing: Loss of breathing power spells bad news for your strength, your heart, your health, and your brain! By the time you’re 50, you’ve lost 40% of your breathing capacity! (Marek, Marek et al. 2011)

In 1988, the European Society of Cardiology reported that even a moderate decline of lung volume increases your risk of heart disease by 200 percent. This is true even for those who have no family history of heart disease. (Cook and Shaper 1988)

In Denmark, the Copenhagen City Heart Study found that a loss of lung volume raises the risk of first-time stroke by over 30 percent boosts the risk of fatal stroke by 200 percent. (Truelsen, Prescott et al. 2001)

Data drawn from the Whitehall II study found lung function is a good ‘summary’ measure of overall functioning in early old age. (Singh-Manoux, Dugravot et al. 2011)

In general, for every 10% decrease in FEV1, all-cause mortality increases by 14%, cardiovascular mortality increases by 28%, and nonfatal coronary event increases by almost 20%. (Sin and Man 2005)

Both the Normative Aging and Coronary Artery Risk Development in (Young) Adults (CARDIA) studies found an association between higher hostility and reduced lung function. Higher hostility was also found to be associated with a more rapid decline in pulmonary function. (Kubzansky, Sparrow et al. 2006) (Jackson, Kubzansky et al. 2007)


Cook, D. G. and A. G. Shaper (1988). “Breathlessness, lung function and the risk of heart attack.” Eur Heart J 9(11): 1215-22. [PMID: 3234413]
Jackson, B., L. D. Kubzansky, et al. (2007). “Does harboring hostility hurt? Associations between hostility and pulmonary function in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in (Young) Adults (CARDIA) study.” Health Psychol 26(3): 333-40. [PMID: 17500620]
Kubzansky, L. D., D. Sparrow, et al. (2006). “Angry breathing: A prospective study of hostility and lung function in the Normative Aging Study.” Thorax 61(10): 863-8. [PMID: 16950835]
Marek, W., E. M. Marek, et al. (2011). “Lung function in our aging population.” Eur J Med Res 16(3): 108-14. [PMID: 21486723]
Sin, D. D. and S. F. Man (2005). “Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease as a risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.” Proc Am Thorac Soc 2(1): 8-11. [PMID: 16113462]
Singh-Manoux, A., A. Dugravot, et al. (2011). “Association of lung function with physical, mental and cognitive function in early old age.” Age (Dordr) 33(3): 385-92. [PMID: 20878489]
Truelsen, T., E. Prescott, et al. (2001). “Lung function and risk of fatal and non-fatal stroke. The Copenhagen City Heart Study.” Int J Epidemiol 30(1): 145-51. [PMID: 11171876]