Even as the threat of the pandemic continues to sweep the nation, we must try to carry on with our “normal” everyday routines at home, albeit with a few adjustments such as work-from-home arrangements and ECQ hours that limit our movement within the community. With all the stress, our overall wellbeing is affected.
Staying healthy is the number one priority these days. Whether you’re under community quarantine or self-isolation, it pays to take extra measures to care for your overall wellbeing so you can keep fighting the good fight. Here’s how to stay healthy at home amid the crisis.
Eat a well-balanced and varied diet.
While there’s no food proven to help prevent the virus, eating clean and healthy always helps build a good line of defense. Whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and protein provide the essential nutrients for normal immune function.
Since you're stuck at home, use this time to prep your meals. There are dozens of recipes available online for you to experiment on given the ingredients in your pantry. Be mindful of food portions, too. Overeating isn’t healthy and could mean more trips to the grocery thus risking exposure to COVID-19.
Limit online food orders.
It’s normal to give into your cravings from time to time, but home-cooked meals should still be prioritized. Despite the lockdown, there are restaurants that have reopened with delivery services available to cater to their customers.
These are stressful times and one way to cope is to indulge in fastfood and other sugary and processed meals. Even if these businesses implement strict hygiene requirements and offer “contact-less” options, you’ll be more at ease if you know what exactly goes into your food and how it was prepared. In addition, preparing your own food helps you to save a few more critical bucks.
Practice safe food handling.
Safe food is healthy food. To minimize contamination and risk of foodborne illnesses, proper hygiene practices and sanitizing protocols are a must.
- Always covering your nose and mouth every time you cough or sneeze
- Washing your hands thoroughly with soap for about 20 seconds before and after preparing or eating food
- Cleaning and disinfecting high-touch surfaces regularly, including countertops and your phone
- Washing fruits, vegetables, and other grocery items before storage
- Separating raw food from cooked food to avoid cross-contamination of harmful microbes
- Cooking and reheating food in adequate temperatures
For optimal health, adopting and maintaining an active lifestyle is necessary. However, self-quarantine may result in more sedentary behavior and low levels of physical activity. The key is to keep your blood pumping. If you’re working at home, make sure to take short breaks in between to stand up and stretch, allotting a few minutes to walk around the house. Doing simple home chores helps, too.
Since most gyms and fitness centers are closed during this time, there’s a handful of workout classes you can check out virtually. In fact, some trainers hold live sessions for their clients. Remember to work out according to your limitations only. We want you to avoid needing to head out to the hospital.
Adequate water intake keeps the body strong to fight off bacteria and infection. As a general rule of thumb: a total of eight to 10 glasses a day is ideal. If you can drink more than that, the better especially now that the pandemic coincides with our summer season. You may add citrus fruits and herbs such as mint and rosemary to add taste.
Of course, being healthy doesn't only include physical wellbeing. It’s important to keep your mental health in check, too. Studies show that people are at risk of anxiety and depression due to self-isolation. News today can sometimes be stressful so if you can help it, regulate your social media intake. Relax and meditate instead or check in with your family or friends. Find meaningful activities that you enjoy like reading books, gardening, and cooking.
Apart from these, maintaining a healthy sleeping routine is also crucial. It helps reduce stress levels Take naps during the day as well to recharge your mind and body.
Get more sunlight.
Vitamin D is a good immune response. If you’re working at home, your makeshift workplace can sometimes be dreary. During your breaks, step outside for a moment. If you have a balcony or garden, bask under the sun. You may also opt to work beside an open window.
Pandemic or not, always work towards maintaining a healthy body and mind. It’ll help boost your immunity and give you that line of defense to protect you against illness, and keeps you motivated as we hunker down for a longer lockdown.