Dietary intervention studies in COPD patients often are short-term inpatient studies where a certain amount of extra energy is guaranteed. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of an 1 year individual multifaceted dietary intervention during multidisciplinary rehabilitation. Eighty-seven patients with severe COPD, not demanding oxygen therapy were included, 24 of them served as controls. A dietary history interview was performed at baseline and at study end. Dietary advice given were based on results from the dietary history and socio-economic status. The intervention group was divided into three parts; NW: normal weight (dietary advice given aiming to weight maintenance), OW: overweight (weight-reducing advice) and UW: underweight (dietary advise based on an energy- and protein-rich diet).
Results: UW-group: Eighty-one per cent of the patients gained weight or kept a stable weight. OW-group: Fifty-seven per cent lost more than 2 kg NW-group: Seventy-six per cent kept a stable weight or gained weight. Increased dietary intake from baseline was seen for energy protein, carbohydrates and certain micronutrients (P < 0.05) in the UW group. Six minutes walking distance increased by approximately 20 m in both NW (P < 0.05) and UW patients. To conclude, slight, but uniform, indications of positive effects of dietary intervention during multidisciplinary rehabilitation was seen. Dietary intervention in underweight COPD patients might be a prerequisite for physical training.