Your overall health affects the symptoms of your COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) or other chronic lung disease. Not enough or too much weight can create or worsen health conditions such as COPD.
Being overweight puts additional strain on your heart and lungs. It can make breathing more difficult and increases the body’s demand for oxygen, leaving you breathless and even more exhausted than usual.
If you are overweight, it is important to talk to your doctor or dietician about setting up a healthy-eating regimen to assist in your weight loss. Be sure to discuss with them that you have a chronic lung condition, too.
You should also make a plan for an achievable exercise program with the help of your doctor. With trouble breathing it is imperative that you take it slow when starting to exercise because over exertion could increase COPD symptoms.
Being underweight also has a negative effect on COPD symptoms. Many people who suffer from this disease also suffer from a lack of appetite, depression, and overall poor health which leads them to under eat. Being underweight leaves you susceptible to infections and low immunity against sickness and for those with COPD this could be detrimental.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, people with COPD use much more energy when breathing than the average person and may need to intake as many as ten times more calories. To aid healthy weight gain you may want to consider snacks like eggs, oats, quinoa, beans, avocado, nuts, and granola. Of course, make sure you talk to your doctor before starting a new diet program. These foods should be eaten in moderation and discussed with your doctor as they have high healthy fat content.
Whether you are trying to lose or gain weight with COPD, it is helpful to plan your meals and stick to a moderate exercise plan. Preparing meals helps to avoid eating fast-food, foods high in preservatives, and foods that have not been approved by your doctor or dietician. By staying at a healthy weight you can live a full, happy life with COPD.
Healthline. Accessed 5/20/16