Bronchial Biscuits, Balloon Breathing and Snotty Sputum Smoothies

Bronchial Biscuits, Balloon Breathing and Snotty Sputum Smoothies are a suite of activities to engage people with lung anatomy, lung function and lung conditions, including Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD).

Biscuit in the shape of lungs


In Bronchial Biscuits, people are invited to decorate lung shaped cookies with icing, forming the branching patterns of blood vessels in the lungs.

Child ices a biscuit

In Balloon Breathing people experiment with blowing up balloons using different sized straws to represent the difference between healthy airways and airways that have narrowed due to a build up of sputum.

Balloon and wool

Balloons are then decorated to represent eitehr healthy lungs, smokers lungs or COPD lungs.

Child draws blood vessels on balloon

In Snotty Sputum Smoothies people can taste different coloured smoothies representing the ‘snot colour chart’! Vanilla is normal healthy snot, kiwi fruit represents a cold or chest infection and the chocolate smoothie is smokers snot!

child drinks blended 'sputum'

People can then make the most disgusting snot of all, COPD sputum, using lime jelly and milk.

Jelly in a lung shape

Bronchial Biscuits, Balloon Breathing & Snotty Sputum Smoothies was presented as part of the NHLI Bring Your Child to Work Day 2013.

Collaborators: Craig Batista (NHLI PhD student), Kylie Belchamber (NHLI Research Associate), Ceri Davies (NHLI Research Assistant), Amy Day (NHLI PhD student), Tank Guney (NHLI Research Technician), Rebecca Holloway (NHLI Research Associate), Adam Loveridge (NHLI Clinical Research Fellow)

Creative Producer: Ellen Dowell