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COPD Diet: This Is What You Need to Be Eating

About 16.4 million people are living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Millions more have COPD but don’t know it. This condition can leave your lungs inflamed, affecting the airflow in and out of your lungs.

Since there’s no cure, it’s important to do what you can to manage your condition. Keep reading to learn how to develop a healthy COPD diet. With these tips, you can make sure you’re getting the nutrients you need to fight off infections.

Build a healthy meal plan for yourself with these foods to eat with COPD.

Drink Up

First, make sure you’re staying hydrated. Your body needs water to carry healing nutrients throughout your body.

Focus on six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day. Drinking water can help thin mucus, which will make it easier to cough out.

Otherwise, try to reduce your caffeine intake. In some cases, caffeinated beverages can have a negative interaction with your COPD medications. These beverages can include:

  • Coffee
  • Soda
  • Tea
  • Energy drinks

You might want to talk to your doctor about whether or not it’s okay to drink alcohol. They might suggest you avoid alcohol altogether, especially if your medications could cause side effects. In some cases, drinking alcohol could make it difficult for you to cough out mucus.

It might also slow your breathing rate down. 

What to Eat

One study observed that a ketogenic diet could lower carbon dioxide output and improve your COPD symptoms. A keto diet focused on reducing carbs and increasing healthy fats and proteins.

Try to heat high-quality proteins such as:

  • Oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines)
  • Poultry
  • Eggs
  • Grass-fed meat

Oily fish are a great source of healthy fat, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Don’t forget to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Try to eat vegetables that are low in starch and carbs, such as potatoes. Fruits and vegetables are full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals that can improve organ function.

For better lung function, choose potassium-rich foods like:

  • Avocadoes
  • Bananas
  • Oranges
  • Leafy-green vegetables
  • Tomatoes

You can benefit from adding complex carbohydrates to your COPD diet, too. Complex carbs are high in fiber, which could help manage your blood sugar levels. They’re also ideal for improving your digestive system health.

Complex carbs can include:

  • Lentils
  • Peas
  • Bran
  • Potatoes

Don’t forget those healthy fats! Try nuts, seeds, and using olive oil in your favorite dishes for your COPD diet.

These foods can make coping with COPD much easier.

What to Avoid

It’s important to avoid certain foods as well. For example, you don’t want to consume too much salt, which could impact lung function. Instead, use unsalted herbs and spices in your dishes.

Here are the foods to avoid with COPD:

  • Grapes
  • Pineapples
  • Berries
  • Melons
  • Apples
  • Peaches
  • Apricots
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Beans
  • Onions
  • Peas

Knowing what foods should be avoided with COPD can help improve your health and comfort.

Get Happy and Healthy With a Better COPD Diet

Develop a smarter, healthier COPD diet. With these tips, you can focus on your health and manage your COPD symptoms. Enjoy your next meal with these tips today!

Explore our Health posts for more tips!

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