To print: Use your web browser's print feature. Close this window after printing.

COPD: Avoiding Weight Loss

Table of Contents


Some people with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)—especially those with emphysema—may be underweight and malnourished.

How do I avoid weight loss in COPD?

If you are beginning to lose weight and muscle mass, you probably need to eat more protein and get more calories. This generally means eating more foods containing fat and protein. Because eating too much fat and targeting certain nutrients (such as protein) may have health risks, always consult with your doctor or a registered dietitian before eating more of these foods to gain weight.

High-calorie snacks

Foods that can help you add calories to your diet include:

Adding calories to a meal or snack

Adding the following foods to meals or snacks can help you add calories and protein to your diet.

Adding protein to your diet

Milk, milk products, and meats are high in protein. Try to eat more of these foods, or:

Credits for COPD: Avoiding Weight Loss

Current as of: February 24, 2020

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Ken Y. Yoneda, MD - Pulmonology, Critical Care Medicine

Note: The "printer friendly" document will not contain all the information available in the online document. Some information (e.g. cross-references to other topics, definitions or medical illustrations) is only available in the online version.

© 1995-2020 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.

The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.