The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute reports that a full 12 million adults are now diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), and there are another 12 million who could be living with the disease and not even realize it. COPD symptoms most often strikes in middle age, with smoking as the top risk factor. Without proper COPD management, ongoing exposure to dust and chemicals can also heighten a person’s risk.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with COPD, following a healthy lifestyle can make a significant difference in the severity of symptoms. And, maintaining a healthy diet can help those with COPD feel better, boost the strength needed for breathing, and better help fight against chest infections.
Follow the guidelines below from the caregivers at CareFor, top providers of home care San Marcos families trust, to better manage the symptoms of COPD:
- Make time for breakfast. For those diagnosed with COPD, breathing burns as many as 10 times more calories than for those without the disease, so beginning the day with a balanced, healthy breakfast can provide the calories and nutrients needed for the day.
- Get sufficient potassium. COPD patients taking diuretics need extra potassium. Good options include potatoes, bananas, oranges, and tomatoes.
- Drink plenty of liquids (but skip the caffeine). Fluids help thin the mucus in a person’s air passageways; but caffeine can conflict with certain medications and cause restlessness, so it’s best to stick with non-caffeinated beverages.
- Skip the gas-inducing foods. Foods like beans, fried foods, and carbonated drinks produce gas and bloating and may make breathing harder for someone with COPD. Stay away from these types of foods to prevent flare-ups.
- Minimize sodium intake. Sodium can cause water retention, which makes it more difficult to breathe; so avoid foods that contain more than 300 milligrams of sodium per serving. Sodium-free seasonings like parsley, oregano, garlic, basil, curry, onion, rosemary and lemon juice are all flavorful alternatives.
CareFor, providers of the best home care San Marcos and the surrounding area has to offer, is experienced in working with COPD patients and their families, and can help manage COPD symptoms, as well as ensure the home is safe and free from irritants. Contact us today online or at (512) 338-4533 to discover more ways we can help.