8 Ways to Stay Healthy While Staying Home
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have been forced to stay home for extended periods. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can be challenging when social interaction is limited and routines are disrupted.
To help you stay healthy during this time, NYPBeHealthy offers the following tips. Remember to keep in contact with your friends and family via phone or video chat, exercise (even walking at home is safe if you follow the recommended guidelines of six feet physical distancing), and get enough sleep.
1. Get a good night’s sleep
Getting enough sleep is one of the best things you can do for your health. It can improve your mood, increase energy levels, and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Try to go to bed at the same time each night, even on weekends. This will reinforce your body’s natural sleep-wake cycle. Avoid eating large meals within a few hours of bedtime and limit alcohol and caffeine late in the day. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, get up and do something relaxing like reading or listening to soothing music until you feel sleepy again.
2. Eat a healthy diet
There are many things you can’t control during this time of uncertainty and stress, but your diet is something you can focus on. Eating a balanced diet can help you maintain a healthy weight and keep you feeling strong.
Choose a variety of low-fat foods, including lean proteins (eggs, beans, poultry without skin, seafood and low-fat dairy), fruits (2 to 3 servings daily) and whole grains.
Plan your meals and grocery shop with a list to reduce impulse buys. Stock up on nonperishable and frozen items so you can prepare quick, nutritious meals.
3. Exercise regularly
Physical activity helps reduce stress, improves mood and provides important muscle-strengthening benefits. It also increases good cholesterol and decreases unhealthy triglycerides, decreasing the risk for heart disease.
Try to exercise on most (or preferably all) days of the week, even if it’s only 30 minutes a day. Going for a walk, dancing, playing games and household chores all count as exercise. Find a friend to join you for accountability and fun. You could even try using a fitness app to keep you motivated.
4. Take care of your skin
Your skin is the primary barrier between your body and the outside world. It holds your body’s fluids in and keeps harmful germs out, and without it, you would get very sick very quickly.
It’s important to take care of your skin no matter what time of year it is. Healthy habits like eating a nutritious diet, getting regular exercise and practicing relaxation can benefit your health in many ways. But taking care of your skin is especially vital during the COVID-19 pandemic.
5. Drink plenty of water
The health benefits of drinking enough water are many. It can help you maintain a healthy weight, keep your skin looking great and help your kidneys function properly.
The old advice of eight glasses of water a day is helpful, but it’s important to drink as much fluid as you need. Try adding some fruit to your water or herbal tea for flavor.
While you’re staying home, eat three healthy meals a day that include fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean protein. This will help you stay healthy and strong while you’re in self-quarantine.
6. Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is critical for your health and well-being. It’s one of the foundations of healthy living, along with eating right and exercise.
During sleep, your heart rate and blood pressure fall, which lowers your risk of heart disease. It also helps to keep the stress hormone cortisol at a normal level.
Make it a habit to go to bed at the same time every night and create a sleep-conducive environment by avoiding large meals, caffeine and alcohol before bedtime.
7. Take time to relax
While it can be challenging to maintain a healthy lifestyle while staying home during the COVID-19 pandemic, there are some things you can do to stay physically and emotionally strong.
For example, try to be creative and find ways to relax. Listen to music, spend time with friends, or meditate.
It’s also important to take a break and move around periodically. For example, if you’re working from home, set a timer to remind yourself to stand up and stretch every 20-30 minutes.
8. Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is critical for good health, but it can be difficult when you’re living away from home. Follow these tips to make it easier to get a good night’s rest.
Keep a regular schedule to maintain your circadian rhythm and to promote a healthy weight. Avoid sugary snacks, which can lead to overeating. Exercise during the day and de-stress before bed to help you fall asleep more easily. Try meditating or taking a warm bath to relax.