Creating a healthier PAH lifestyle can help you stay as active as possible. And it doesn’t have to mean drastic changes. Changing your lifestyle does involve healthier choices. You’ll soon discover that simply being aware of what affects your condition can lead to big benefits.
For PAH patients, these changes may include simple efforts, such as limiting your salt intake, or more complex issues, such as avoiding certain foods and vitamins that could interact with your medication. Think about your lifestyle, and focus on ways to give your body what it needs.
Ask your doctor about any dietary restrictions in case certain herbs, supplements, or medications you’re currently taking might interact with your PAH treatment. Visit our Living PAH Kitchen for quick and delicious low-salt recipes that can help you enjoy shaking that salt habit.
Here are some common dietary suggestions:
- Control your intake of salt and foods high in sodium
Fluid retention is a common problem for people with PAH. Reducing your consumption of salt and foods high in sodium is one way to relieve water buildup. Try using herbs or salt-free seasonings while cooking, and reduce or eliminate salting your food at the table. Also, shop for foods that are sodium free or low in sodium. Remember to always check nutrition labels.
- Monitor fluid intake
Cutting back on fluids is another way to avoid swelling and fluid retention. Many patients are told to restrict their fluid intake to 2 liters (a half-gallon) per day, but because each patient is different, talk to your healthcare provider about what’s right for you.
- Avoid nausea
Some PAH patients experience nausea as a side effect of treatment. Try eating smaller meals, limiting fluid intake, and avoiding fatty foods. It’s also a good idea to avoid carbonated and acidic beverages. When nausea does occur, eating a bite of a cracker or a piece of dry bread can help.
Be sure to check the labels on the foods you buy. Remember, “lower sodium” is not always the same as “low sodium.”