Have you recently been diagnosed with COPD? Well, then your health care practitioner has probably told you that you need to take care of your eating habits. Sometimes your doctor may ask you to visit a nutritionist to get a customized diet plan.
What Is COPD?
Before we get going on the healthy diet process for COPD, let us understand what this disease or disorder is all about. COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a chronic lung disease that makes breathing difficult as it blocks the airflow. It is an energy-sapping condition. However, your diet can play a significant part in helping you recover and feel better.
Yes, a healthy diet is not enough to help you recover completely. However, it does help you stay fit and keep your infections at bay. As chest infections are a recurring concern for COPD patients, watching your diet could come handy. Research suggests that it also reduces your risk of hospitalization from frequent infections.
Besides that, eating healthy has numerous other perks too. While most people think eating healthy means eating bland boring food, it does not have to be that way. Here are a few diet tips that would help you stay healthy without draining out your love for food!
Intake Protein Intake
COPD patients must ensure that they add enough protein to their diet. So, make protein-rich foods like meat, eggs, and fish an integral part of your everyday diet. If you are wondering why you need a protein-rich diet, the answer is simple!
Protein packs a punch, nutritionally, as it helps you build more muscle. Besides that, it also helps stave off any lurking infection impacting your body.
Oatmeal for breakfast? That’s a good idea!
If you are a COPD patient, you must eat a good breakfast, and oatmeal is always a great idea to begin with. Make it even more nutritious by adding the anti-oxidant rich berries, and some fruits. This would not just add color to your food, but would also make a nutritious meal. You can add a milk of your choice to enrich the taste.
Have High-Calorie Nutritious Foods
COPD drains out your energy and leaves you feeling fatigued most of the time. It makes it difficult for you to go about with your everyday chores and life. So, it is always better to include a high-calorie food to your diet, which will increase your energy levels. However, instead of indulging in empty calorie foods like mashed potatoes, sugar, pies, and ice cream, you can include nutritionally dense foods to your diet. This could be anything like baked fish, chicken, and lean meat. All these are ideal to increase your energy and boost energy.
Include Healthy Fats
Instead of opting for calorie-dense foods such as fried foods, choose good quality fats. This could be anything like fatty fish, olives and olive oil, avocados, nuts and seeds, cheese, and so on. These foods offer a higher satiety value and help you build up a healthier body in the long run.
People with COPD need to drink a copious amount of water to flush out mucus, which could be choking the airways leading to breathing problems. Fluids help keep the mucus thin in the airways and help you breathe easy.
Replace Salt with Herbs
COPD patients need to add flavors to their foods, but adding too much salt is probably not a good idea. So, think of better substitutes such as flavorful herbs. It is important to reduce sodium intake as sodium leads to water retention, and water retention leads to more breathing problems.
Include Healthy Snacks
For snacks, you can add more nutrient-dense foods to help make your calories count. You can munch on foods such as nuts and seeds, pudding cups and wheat crackers, and so on.
Consume More Fiber
If you are suffering from COPD, you may need to add more fiber to the diet, at least 25 to 30 grams of fiber. Plant-based foods add a whole lot of fiber to your meals. So including foods like beans, whole-grain bread, cereals, vegetables, fresh fruits, lentil soups, carrot, and split pea are a great idea.
Include Potassium In Your Diet
Potassium-rich foods are preferable for COPD patients. Add more potatoes, bananas, oranges, and tomatoes as potassium is beneficial for COPD patients.
People usually suffer from COPD disease after they reach forty. Many reasons may make you suffer from this condition, such as the consumption of chemicals, food adulteration, smoking, and air pollution. Stick to a nutritious diet to keep breathing problems at bay and manage the condition well. After all, a good diet can be an answer to most of your health issues.