Malnutrition can be a problem with people with COPD. Failure to cook or eat healthy food can result in the deterioration of overall health and may further compromise the lung function of those with this disease.
Malnutrition may occur despite adequate dietary intake of nutrients. Researchers have found that increasing dietary carbohydrates increases carbon dioxide production, which leads to reduced exercise tolerance and increased breathlessness in people with COPD. On the other hand, those with a higher intake of fruit (which is high in carbohydrates) have proven to be at lower risk of developing lung diseases.
People with COPD should, therefore, consider eliminating most sources of refined sugars, but not fruits, from their diet. It may surprise you to learn just how many sources carry refined sugar. Just for reference, the various names for refined sugar include: White Sugar, Beet Sugar, Brown Sugar, Cane Sugar, Confectioner’s Sugar, Corn Syrup, Demerera, Dextrose, Granulated Sugar, Grape Sugar, Molasses, Muscavado Sugar, Raw Sugar, Refined Sugar, Sucrose, Table Sugar, and Turbinado Sugar.
Especially during times of financial stress, whether caused by medical costs, inability to work, or the overall economy, it is way too easy to seek the availability, the instant gratification, and the relative inexpense of fast food or pre-prepared dinners at the supermarket. The problem is, of course, that most of the pre-prepared foods available are incredibly high in carbohydrates, in sugars, and in sodium.
Perhaps not surprisingly, sugar is the number one food additive in the United States.
Don’t take me wrong. I love a good apple fritter or bacon cheeseburger as much as the next guy, but I try to keep them to a minimum.