The global pandemic caused by COVID-19 has made us spend much more time at home than we did before, so we must adapt our habits to the new circumstances. Leading a lifestyle with healthy habits strengthens us to face possible contagion of diseases, for this reason, we recommend that the advice that we offer here be followed.
In this new situation in which we spend less time away from home and have more time, there are many people who dare to make new recipes, but beware! Not everything is based on making pastries. It is a good time to learn to cook, dedicate time to it and plan weekly menus, look for recipes that incorporate those foods that we did not usually eat because they required more time to prepare, etc. We must be practical and use this situation to reverse this trend, learning to eat healthily, if we were not already doing so. These basic recommendations can help us achieve it:
It is advisable to spend some time thinking about and writing down both the meals and the dinners of the week, without forgetting breakfasts, snacks, and possible “healthy” snacks.
If we do not find a specific product in stores and supermarkets, we can always look for alternatives that are equally valid.
To know the size of the portion and frequency of consumption that we should make of each food group, you can consult the following link:
Purchase planning for several days
According to the planning of the menus, the shopping list would be drawn up, taking into account that it is advisable to reduce outings to avoid contact with other people in closed places. It is not advisable to go out every day to buy bread (we can freeze it in portions or make it at home) and those products that may have been forgotten. If we have the menu planned, with the necessary dishes and ingredients, outings will be reduced, in addition to avoiding the temptation to buy products that we do not need. With everything well organized, we will be able to reduce food waste.
When shopping, it is better for one person to go, preferably always the same person and not from a risk group, keeping a safe distance, not touching your face while shopping, not touching bulk food without adequate protection. and better to pay by card or mobile.
Maintain mealtime routines
Spending more time at home can lead us to modify our healthy habits and our schedules, delaying mealtimes, which can lead us to snack and feel tempted to resort to inadvisable foods such as snacks, both sweet and salty, pastries and sweets, sugary soft drinks, and processed foods, which should be limited.
In those moments between meals when you feel like eating something, you can resort to foods such as fruit, take a handful of raw or roasted nuts without salt, a natural yogurt, or why not? occasionally, an ounce of dark chocolate.
And we cannot forget to hydrate ourselves properly, remember to drink water, make it our drink of choice, and drink infusions, which we can flavor with lemon, mint, etc.
Sometimes we eat out of boredom, anxiety, which added to the fact that we move less, work from home sitting down, cannot go out to do physical activity, can lead us to gain weight, with all the health problems that this entails.
Did we engage in physical activity before the period of physical distancing with others began? You can take advantage of this moment to start a gentle practice of physical activity and gradually increase frequency and intensity. Now we have more time to think about which exercises to do and which ones we like. You will notice, after a few days, greater flexibility and agility.
You can do physical activity both inside and outside the home. Here are some recommendations:
Physical activity inside the house
If you are not used to practicing physical activity, you can take advantage of the opportunity to move around with household chores (cleaning the home, putting things in order, food, etc.) It is a good time to clean up those things that you do not use. Moving furniture (always safely), reaching for objects on shelves, cleaning windows… all this involves energy expenditure.
Likewise, we can carry out many other activities inside the house that help us to be in shape.
Below you can find some videos to do physical activity at home for adults.
If you telecommute…
Currently, it is very common to work from home in the telecommuting modality. If so, it is important not to neglect fitness:
- Get up at least every hour, stretch or walk a few steps.
- Carry out a “healthy break” every two hours: get up, take a walk, stretch your arms, gently stretch your neck. Have a drink such as water or tea or coffee and fruit.
- While sitting, move your legs, stretching them out and twisting your ankles. The same with the neck, gently from time to time, turn the head from one side to the other and do stretch tilting the head.
- Do I have to answer a phone call? Take the opportunity to get up and talk by taking a walk around the room or the corridor. Are you going to participate in a video conference? Take the opportunity to get up a little earlier and go for a walk or stretch.
- Work in a different place where you rest. If it is not possible, at the end of the working day, collect everything that is used to be able to disconnect.
If you must remain isolated…
Even when COVID-19 is diagnosed and you have to stay in isolation in a room at home, you still need to pay attention to how much you move. Therefore we recommend the following:
- Stretch: move your feet, ankles, legs, hips, arms, elbows, and wrists, and finally your neck and head.
- Take short walks in the space in which you are in confinement.
- Interrupt the time you spend lying down or sitting in front of the mobile screen, game console, or TV. Do not stay more than 2 hours in a row.
If the disease has been overcome…
If you have been through COVID-19, either at home or especially if you have been hospitalized, it is important to gradually recover your physical condition. If health personnel provide any recommendations, it is important that their instructions are followed. If they are not available, it is advisable to consult the primary care health team about what can and cannot be done. In any case, you can always at least do exercises sitting down such as turning your ankles, standing stretches, raising your arms, moving your shoulders forward… as long as it doesn’t cause pain or fatigue!
Physical activity outside the home
It is important that the intensity and time of activity be increased progressively. Warm-up before starting, and finish gently and with stretches. Once you are on the street, it is essential to keep your distance from other people:
- If you are walking, at least two meters away.
- If you run, increase the distance to 10 meters and
- If you go by bicycle, separate yourself at least 20 meters from the cyclist in front.
The loss of the usual routine and the reduction of social and physical contact with other people carry negative psychological effects.
The negative effects of confinement also seem to be mitigated when we adopt an altruistic attitude helping others for the benefit of society, instead of dwelling on the idea that they impose a restriction on our freedom.
This type of situation generates an emotional storm. Fear is one of the basic emotions that appears most frequently in alarm situations (losing our job, getting sick, losing our loved ones, etc.). It is also common to feel irritable and anger appears (towards politicians, towards citizens who break the rules, towards service companies, etc.). Likewise, grief and sadness are also very common in the face of the loss of loved ones and the uncertainty about how long the situation will last.
All crises are an opportunity for change. People have the ability to adapt to adverse situations and overcome circumstances such as the loss of a loved one, job loss, etc., which is what is called resilience: accept pain, accept reality and learn from all this.
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