Living with COPD
Maintaining Good Health with COPD
COPD, which stands for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, is an ailment of the lungs. It causes the tissue of the lungs to become thick and inflamed and makes it harder for air to flow in and out. There is no cure for COPD, but there are many ways to treat and manage the symptoms. This article discusses three of those ways.
Maintain a Normal Weight
Being overweight can make it harder for you to breathe if you have COPD. In can also increase your risk of developing other serious illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes that can make managing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease even more difficult to manage. On the other hand, you don’t want to lose too much weight. Being underweight can lead to weakness, exhaustion and to an even poorer prognosis than being overweight. To achieve the best results, focus on editing lean proteins such as dairy, poultry, nuts and beans. It is also better to eat several small meals a day rather than two or three large ones.
Protect Your Lungs
The lungs are made of delicate tissue. Air enters them directly, making them especially vulnerable. When your lungs are already ill, it is important to make sure to protect them as much as humanly possible. For instance, if you work around chemical fumes or toxins, talk to your doctor about masks that may protect. Do not smoke and try to avoid being around second-hand smoke. When summer rolls around, keep an eye on the local news for pollution alerts and pollen alerts. Try to stay inside when these numbers are high. Do what you can to avoid respiratory infections. Wash your hands frequently, use hand sanitizer and avoid large gatherings or people who are sick. Finally, if your doctor has prescribed oxygen, use it as directed.
Engage in Physical Exercise
In moderation, activity can strengthen your muscles and lungs and make breathing easier. It can also ease depression and anxiety. Before you start an exercise program, make sure to check with your doctor to avoid overdoing your workouts. Some of the most common exercises for people with COPD include stretching, resistance training, and low impact aerobics such as walking or swimming.
It can be disheartening to learn that you have COPD. This condition, though, is not a death sentence. In fact, if you take care of your body and follow your doctor’s instructions, you can protect your lungs and live in good health for many years.