vocal-damage-2Phlegm is catarrh (mucus with saliva) found in the respiratory system. It is brought up to the mouth by singing, excessive talking or exertion. What is good to know about phlegm? 1. It is mostly absorbed into the system naturally. 2. Phlegm (or mucous that is more balanced and not thick) is important for the body. 3. So it is not recommended to ask the physician for prescriptions to dry up the phlegm because in the long run the results will not necessarily be beneficial. 4. Phlegm/mucous is important for several bodily systems- the respiratory system, voice production, ambulatory/movement, the blood and digestive systems. 5. When the phlegm is too thick and or in undesirable amounts it can pile up and cause blockage in any of the systems that were mentioned. 6. Phlegm is one of the factors that changes the color of the voice and will cause difficulty in voice production. How does it happen- what influences the production of too much phlegm?

  1. Phlegm in the vocal tract resulting from stress on the vocal tract
  2. Organ weakness, consider the spleen, which in Chinese medicine balances moisture in the body- and guarantees the right amount of liquid to the respiratory system so that phlegm will flow and not get stuck.
  3. Food (in particular acidic and fried food that has been digested and becomes sticky thick phlegm.
How to treat and prevent excessive phlegm for those who suffer and some good general advice for us all:
  1. Be aware and strict when we eat and what we eat.
  2. No eating at night
  3. Food should be cooked and warm
  4. 3-4 hours before bedtime only water
  5. Add to the daily diet: Buckwheat 2. Whole rice 3. Lentils 4. Vegetable soup
  6. Oils that are preferable to use: 1. Organic coconut oil for cooking 2. Cold pressed olive oil for salads
  7. Seasonings that will help loosen phlegm are: 1. Turmeric. 2. Cardamom 3. Cinnamon 4. Nutmeg
  8. Abstain from acidic foods such as tomatoes and oranges (lemon though acidic becomes alkaline once in the digestive tract.
  9. Lessen intake of animal protein, milk, and other dairy products meat and eggs.
  10. Maintain physical activity and vocal warm ups (not necessarily exercises for vocal strength) in order to keep the body supple and strong and prevent stagnation on all levels.
Keep all this in mind and your “Phlegm Experiences” will be short and far in between. Taking care of you voice, Talya