Hello there, my Northern Hemisphere friends. It’s Russell Winwood the COPD athlete, and I want to talk about some hot weather tips. Even though it’s currently winter in Australia where I live, there are many chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients for whom it’s summertime. I love spending time outside when it’s warm out, but there are certain aspects of summer that make it harder to do this when you have COPD. However, there are 3 ways that you can manage COPD in hot weather that may help you get outside in the summer.
1. Check the Pollen and Pollution Forecasts
Pollen is a product of plants, and many plants bloom when it’s hot out. This puts more pollen in the air, which may exacerbate, or worsen, your COPD symptoms. The heat and humidity of the summer months also tend to increase the effects of other forms of air pollution, and this can also cause COPD symptoms to worsen. To ensure you’re only going out when pollen and pollution levels are at their lowest, make sure you take a look at the daily pollen and pollution forecasts for your area. This way, you have the best chance of avoiding exacerbations when doing activities outside.
2. Move Your Exercise Inside
Exercising regularly can be beneficial to your lung health, but exercises can be more difficult to do in high heat, especially if you have a chronic lung disease. For this reason, you may want to consider moving your exercise time indoors when it’s hot.
For example, you could do your daily walking on a treadmill in an air-conditioned gym. You can also take advantage of other low-impact cardio machines, such as exercise bikes. Gyms also usually have a variety of free weights you can use to maintain the strength of your arm, leg and chest muscles. Just be careful not to overdo it.
3. Stay Hydrated
Water is vital to the functions of the body, and people tend to lose more of it when it’s hot out. This can be an issue for COPD patients because being dehydrated can lead to thicker mucus, and thicker mucus is often harder to expel from your lungs. If you can’t get rid of excess mucus, it can build up in your lungs and make it more difficult to breathe. It can also increase your risk of developing lung infections. For these reasons, it’s important for chronic lung disease patients to drink water whenever you’re feeling thirsty, especially if you’re exercising outside in warm weather. In fact, you may want to consider taking a bottle of water with you anytime you go outside.
By following these 3 tips, you may be able to continue exercising and maintaining good lung function even when it’s hot outside. Until next time, this is Russell Winwood wishing everyone good luck and good lung health.
Lung Health Institute Offers Treatment Options for Chronic Lung Disease Patients
At Lung Health Institute, we offer several treatment options that can help supplement treatments prescribed by your doctor. For instance, our team offers 3 Anti-Inflammatory Initiative™, or AI2™, plans that may help COPD patients.
Our AI2 plans provide patients with many kinds of helpful information, such as tips about foods that may help decrease inflammation. These plans also offer information about sleeping, lung-healthy exercise and how to track progress. By using this information in their day-to-day lives, COPD patients may get several benefits. For example, these plans may help boost your immune system naturally. AI2 plans are also designed to train your body to use fats as inflammation-fighting fuel.
Take the next step to Breathe Easier™. Contact one of our patient coordinators today for more information or to schedule a free consultation.