We all continue to shelter in place so that we can avoid contact with the hundreds of thousands of people infected with COVID-19. As a result, many of us aren’t able to engage in our usual health and wellness habits. Yelp recently released a study on how consumer interests are shifting during the Coronavirus quarantine. The study showed increases in pizza and other fast food orders.
However, many fitness experts, including physique transformation specialist, founder of Health Kik, and multi-athlete Kris Gethin, say that ordering fast food from Uber Eats is the last thing you should be doing to stay healthy during this time. Instead, Gethin suggests that you should actually follow these eight health and wellness tips to keep your immune system in check while in self-quarantine:
1. Do Meditation & Breathwork
Meditation and breathwork switch your nervous system into a parasympathetic state. This state helps slow your heart rate, relax muscles, and increase intestinal activity. You can start or end your day with meditation, or even work some quick, paced breathing exercises anywhere into your day. These mindful moments will help keep your stress levels down, which will, in turn, boost your immune system.
2. Use Hot & Cold Therapy
Scientists determined that moving from hot to cold boosts your immunity because your body produces higher numbers of disease-fighting white blood cells. This can not only help your body fight off the common cold, but also more serious illnesses — like COVID-19. These hot and cold therapies can also reduce muscle pain and help treat inflammation, which are great benefits for people who work out.
3. Stay Hydrated
Although many of us forget to stay hydrated, it’s an important step in illness prevention. In fact, you should drink at least eight glasses of mineralized, antioxidant-rich water per day (increase this if you’re regularly breaking a sweat). Proper hydration helps regulate body temperature, lubricate joints, prevent infections, and deliver nutrients to cells. These all play an important part in preventing many viruses, including the novel coronavirus.
4. Get Outside
Even though we can’t congregate in public places, you should still make efforts to go outside during this time of quarantine. Sunlight is restorative and helps our bodies increase vitamin D, which strengthens bones and immune systems while also minimizing the likelihood of chronic diseases. Sunlight also stimulates the pineal gland, which produces hormones like melatonin, which not only helps regulate sleep patterns but also prevents cardiovascular issues.
5. Continue Training at Home
Even though the gyms are closed, you should keep up with your regular exercise or strength training at home. However, be sure that you don’t spend too much of your free time working out and strain or overtrain your body. Don’t have proper workout equipment? No problem! There are many ways you can still lift weights and exercise at home.
6. Eat a Healthy Diet
A healthy diet is one of the best ways to give your body all of the natural tools it needs to fight off disease. In addition to eating the rainbow, you should consume antiviral or antifungal foods as well as spices such as turmeric, garlic, and apple cider vinegar. All of these foods have natural restorative properties and boost your immune system.
7. Try a Digital Detox
Although many of us are using technology to entertain ourselves during this very stressful and difficult time, most experts say that excess time on technology can harm both our physical and mental health. Therefore, you should set limits on your electronics usage and make sure that you don’t over-consume news-related media.
Last but not least, don’t forget to smile even during the most difficult days. Smiling helps combat stress. It’s also somewhat contagious and can rub off on others around us either in-person or virtually.
While these are definitely very different times for us all, it’s important that we follow some consistent routines and maintain healthy habits even while we sit at home. After all, a healthy lifestyle and social distancing can ultimately prevent COVID-19.
Previously Published on Thrive Global