A diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) can be life-changing. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to manage symptoms and maintain control of your condition. Here are a few areas you can concentrate on to lead a healthy and fulfilling life with COPD.
A Guide to Living Well With COPD
Nutrition can significantly affect your overall wellness and help you manage conditions such as COPD. Getting an adequate number of calories is crucial to prevent malnutrition, which can cause weakness and fatigue and increase your risk of infection. However, it is also essential not to overeat. Excessive weight can put even more strain on the cardiovascular and respiratory systems as the body requires more oxygen.
Fill up on fruits and vegetables, as these tend to be low in calories and high in nutrients. Reduce your intake of simple carbohydrates and unhealthy fats and eat plenty of protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates. Also, drink about eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day to promote circulation, boost your immune system, and maintain a healthy weight.
With COPD, it may be more challenging to stay active. However, doing so can improve your endurance, tolerance, and muscle strength over time. Because exercise releases endorphins, it can also improve your mental health.
To avoid exacerbating your symptoms too much, try exercises such as yoga, tai chi, walking, and light strength training. Stretching and breathing exercises are also helpful.
Pulmonary rehabilitation can provide access to a multidisciplinary medical team that offers a combination of treatments. These include nutritional counseling to help you implement healthy dietary choices and exercise tips, and physical therapy to teach energy conservation and breathing techniques. You may also receive group support or psychological counseling to manage the mental health effects of a chronic condition.
If you’re living with COPD, turn to the compassionate, experienced professionals at Integrative Medicine of New York, PLLC. This healthcare team provides a range of services, from preventative medicine to cancer treatment and immunotherapy, to patients throughout Long Island, New York City, and the tri-state area. Call (516) 759-4200 to schedule a consultation. Visit the website to learn more about the practice.