Spending more time at home can have some perks, like a puzzle session or finally cleaning out your wardrobe. However, the now nearer proximity to the fridge and pantry may also mean erratic eating resulting in your foraging through the pantry for chips or the freezer for that tub of cookies and cream connoisseur.
Now is not the time to be putting strict dietary rules and restrictions around what you can and cannot eat, however, there are a number of proven, proactive steps you can take to give yourself the best shot at staying healthy and happy while weathering this pandemic.
Check out our list of 5 things you can do to get through this period self-isolation with your health in check!
1. Keep Your Usual Routine
We now life may be very different now, however, we recommend trying to keep whatever routines you can the same as before. Humans are rhythmic beings. Having a routine will help you adjust to life while social distancing and give you a sense of comfort and control as well as help to improve your productivity.
Start by getting up at the time you would otherwise and doing what you would usually do before starting your work day e.g. having breakfast and exercising. Try and have set mealtimes so yo don’t just graze all day long.
2. Drink Up!
We’re not talking about booze (sorry!). Changing your routine might affect when you drink or what fluids you drink. Research has indicated that people eat more when they’re dehydrated because they mistake the feeling of thirst for hunger. Drinking enough water is important for your mental and physical health. It’s simple, but can honestly have a huge impact.
Here’s some tips to up your liquid intake whilst working remotely:
- Set a timer every hour or so to remember to get up and hydrate
- Keep a drink bottle at your desk space (away from the computer of course!)
- Have jug of water with some fresh fruit nearby
- Buy yourself some kombucha to leave in the fridge
- Enjoy sipping on herbal teas throughout the day
- Get yourself a soda stream so you can have sparkling water on tap
3. Plan Your Meals
Now the kitchen is just steps away, it’s easy to grab something to eat on the fly without really thinking twice about it. Set aside some time to plan your meals at the beginning of the week so you can ensure variety and balance throughout the week (e.g. you might have a few vegetarian meals, some fish, chicken and red meat throughout the week).
If you’re not usually much of a planner, there’s no better time to become one than now. Most of us probably have more time to cook so make the most of it and be inventive and learn new skills like making bread or trying out new recipes. if you’ve got kids, cooking is a great indoors activity to get them involved in. Given some foods may be a little difficult to find at the moment, planning ahead is even more important.
4. Focus on Sleep!
A good night’s sleep is extremely important for good health – in fact it is just as important as healthy eating and regular exercise. Good sleeping patterns can be beneficial for your health in many ways, including supporting your immune system, gut-health and brain functioning.
Do your best to go to bed at the same time each night and get at least seven hours of shut-eye.
5. Catch some sunshine
Vitamin D is particularly important for the optimal functioning of your immune system and fighting infection. We get around 80-90% of our vitamin D requirements from the sun, and the remaining 10-20% from our diet. This means in the winter months, or anytime you are spending more times in doors, it is even more important to load up on food sources of vitamin D.
With the restrictions currently in place around the world curbing our outside activity, ensuring we are getting enough of this vitamin is especially important at the moment.
Try to get outside either for exercise or simply sit in the garden or on a balcony for at least 10 – 15 minutes in the sunlight if possible.
Article is supplied by Anna and Alex, our Dietitians and Nutritionists - The Biting Truth.