Respiratory Disorders Expert Forum
Diet for COPD
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Diet for COPD

In a response to Bonzo RTFLY mentioned a diet that is appropriate for COPD patients. Could I get more info on such a diet? Thanks!
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Some people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) are overweight.  This can increase shortness of breath.  A good weight loss plan would be an appropriate diet.

Some people with COPD are underweight because the effort of breathing takes extra energy.  This can lead to muscle loss and weaken your ability to fight infection.  An increased calorie plan would be an appropriate diet.

Eat several small meals and snacks throughout the day to avoid over filling your stomach.  When your stomach gets too full your lungs get crowded.  This may make you feel more short of breath, which can make eating hard work.  Eating less of the foods that cause gas will also help you to avoid feeling too full.

When you feel tired or have a loss of appetite you may eat less at your meals.  Snacks will help to replace the calories that you miss during your meals.  Ask your doctor or dietitian about calorie boosters and high calorie drinks.

Calorie boosters will allow you to eat more calories while eating the same amount of food.  Some calorie boosters are butter, margarine, cream cheese, dried fruit, dry milk powder, granola, honey, sugar, peanut butter, nuts, and vegetable oils.

Non-alcoholic and decaffeinated drinks that are high in calories will give you extra calories to stop weight loss or improve weight gain.  Some high calorie drinks are juice, milk, and nutritional supplements.

For more information about a diet that is appropriate for people with COPD, please contact LUNG LINE
4 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi...I believe my comment may have been misleading. There isn't one specific diet for all COPD patients although all COPD patients should be aware of their diet (as we all should!!). Dietary intervention is all subjective...each patient is different. However, the basic goals are to prevent nutritional depletion and assure a mix of nutrients can be handled easily by an impaired respiratory system. Each patient should undergo a diet history and interview as well as nutritional history. A dietician or rehab nurse, along with a physician, would be the best source for these interviews and information. The RN that hosts this forum may be able to help you as well. I would be hesitant to single out any one particular diet intake for any patient whose history is unknown. Take care...

                                         JCI, BS RRT
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Avatar_n_tn
This info is very helpful and I think it will help put me on the right track. I have lost 12 pounds in the last 2 months. After the first 5 or 6 pounds I begin to be conserned and began to  add calories to my day- half-n-half in my coffee, Ben & Jerry's after dinner. But I continued to loose weight. I was running a fever (and didn't realize it. I was cold even in a 75 degree house and, since my mom has thyroid problems, I figured my thyroid must be low or something. I didn't suspicion fever even when I started coughing up stuff. It wasn't until the doctor said I had bronchitis - from the emphysema - that I realized I was cold because of fever. After a round of antibiotics I am no longer cold.)But I am still loosing weight.  Your explanation helps me understand why and I will work harder to increase my calories and add snacks into the day. I will ask my primary care physician about seeing a dietician. Thanks for the calories booster ideas that I can use in the meantime. My diagnosis of emphysema was so recently that I am not set up with a pulmanary specialist yet. And I will get the Understanding Exercise, Diet, and Lung Disease booklet. Thanks! And for those people visiting the site, please pass on = avoid second-hand smoke. You never have to smoke the get emphysema if those around you are doing the smoking for you.
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Avatar_n_tn
<<the doctor said I had bronchitis - from the emphysema>>
You don't actually GET bronchitis from emphysema, though you are more susceptible to lung infections when you have a chronic lung condition like emphysema.  Also, many primary care physicians are able to help patients manage emphysema very well and do not refer their patients to lung specialists (called pulmonologists in the US & respirologists elsewhere) until the patient's symptoms are difficult for the primary care physician to manage.  (For example, patients who require supplemental oxygen, patients whose condition is worsening despite optimal medical management, patients who need Prolastin for Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency, etc.)  Having the primary care physician handle the patient's general needs and lung care needs makes the care of the patient less confusing for everyone, until more specialized care is needed; it's also less expensive for the patient & insurer.
Aloha,
Starion
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Avatar_m_tn
A related discussion, Low carbohydrate "pulmonary diet" was started.
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