The human body uses food as energy, which is why it is extremely important that you supply your body with the proper energy by eating foods that are good for you. This is especially important when you are a patient with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Choosing not to nourish your body with healthy foods such as fruits, veggies, and lots of water will take a toll on your body, a horrible diet can even impact your breathing. Which is why we will be talking about the type of food groups you should nourish your body with, as well as the food groups to stay away from. A proper diet will certainly not cure COPD but it will make your overall quality of life that much better!
Eating a Healthy Diet with COPD
Your COPD Diet Should Include:
Water - Everyday you should make it a goal to consume at least 6 - 8 cups of 8 FL OZ of water, and be sure to stay away from sugary and often highly caffeinated soft drinks. Drinking plenty of fluids will help keep the mucus in your throat thin, making it easier to cough up and expel.
Foods that are Rich in Fiber - Eating foods that are high in fiber will help push them through the digestive tract, and even helps regulate blood glucose levels. Foods that are high in fiber include fruits, veggies, nuts, peas, and whole-grain foods. Everyday you should work towards eating 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day.
Calcium and Vitamin D - Having a diet rich in foods with lots of calcium and vitamin D will help keep your bones healthy and strong. Foods such as milk, cheese, or yogurt are great places to find excess amounts of vitamin D and calcium. Your doctor may even recommend taking calcium and vitamin D supplements to make up for shortages.
Things to Avoid with COPD:
Overeating - The best way to avoid overeating is by simply eating 5 - 6 small meals throughout the day, that way you are spacing out your meal time rather than eating a full days worth in 3 larger meals. Overeating causes your stomach to be too full, making breathing even harder.
Sodium - Having a diet with excess amounts of sodium (salt) causes your body to retain too much water, which is known as fluid retention and will cause breathing to be increasingly difficult. Instead of using sodium substitute herbs and spices to flavor your next dinner, while you should also avoid foods that have a sodium content over 300 mg per serving. When switching from sodium speak with your doctor, as some spices and herbs may contain ingredients that are just as if not more harmful than sodium.