Preparing meals can be strenuous - even for those people who are healthy. If you have COPD, careful planning lies at the centre of dealing with this issue.
Plan your meals. Light and well-balanced meals are essential and need to be planned carefully in advance.
Takeaway tango. Preprepared or takeaway foods can be useful, but often have high salt, fat or sugar contents. It is important that you eat a healthy diet.
Freezer frenzy. When you cook, cook double or triple the amount and freeze the rest for a day on which you may not have enough energy for cooking.
Cooking clues. Make use of a microwave oven as it reduces cooking time. You don't always have the energy to stand at the stove stirring pots for hours on end.
Bracing breeze. Make sure that your kitchen is well-ventilated. Get an extractor fan if possible. If not possible, get a normal portable fan. Not only will this blow away odours, but it will also cool down the kitchen.
Within easy reach. Put things where they are easily accessible, especially the things which you use most often.
(Susan Erasmus, Health24, updated December 2008)
Visit the SA Thoracic Society for more information.