A PROACTIVE way to combat COVID-19
During these uncertain times I believe Social Distancing (the catch phrase of 2020!) and Self-Isolation, where possible, are the key to containment of the terrible COVID-19. This is especially important for many of us, who because of medical conditions or age, are in the more vulnerable group category. However I truly believe in taking a PROACTIVE approach to health. So while in lockdown, here are some daily habits that will help to ensure you and your family have the best chance of preventing viruses, colds and flus:
- Reducing stress - Too much stress increases the hormone cortisol, which can suppress the immune system. Stress-reduction techniques such as meditation, mindfulness, yoga, or other activities you enjoy can have a positive impact on your immune system.
- Eating a balanced diet - This is as simple as eating five serves of fruit and vegetables daily and including a variety of whole grains, healthy fats and protein at each meal. Following these basic guidelines ensures you receive a range of essential vitamins and minerals to support your immune system (see the recommended foot chart below). AVOID - Sugary Foods, Fried Foods, Sugary Drinks, Processed Carbs, White Bread, Pastries, Processed Meats.
- Practising good hygiene habits – wash hands thoroughly, avoid touching your mouth, eyes or face, dispose of used tissues in a closed bin, and ensure you sneeze or cough into the crook of your elbow or a tissue (not your hands!)
- Get 7-8 hours of sleep - Yes, lack of sleep can affect your immune system. Studies show that people who don't get quality sleep or enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus, such as a common cold virus. Lack of sleep can also affect how fast you recover if you do get sick. Set up good sleep routines and habits.
- Exercise - Going for a walk to get fresh air and vitamin D is the best way to look after your health as you can see from the image below - there are so many benefits to walking! This is safe to do even when in Social Isolation, (obviously providing you're 1.5 metres away from people on your walk!). I have also put together a home exercise program which covers all important areas of the body and core, postural, upper and lower body strengthening as well as flexibility and balance. If you would like this PDF emailed to you please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Take paracetamol for Fever/Pain - Stories have been circulating online suggesting it's dangerous to take ibuprofen if you have coronavirus. Alongside genuine medical advice, false messages have been spreading, distorting the facts. Firstly follow your doctors advice. However if you are not on anti-inflammatories and need to take something for fever or pain relief, reach for the paracetamol first. Other natural pain relieving modalities include: Applying Ice (to inflamed areas or new injuries in the first 48 hours), Applying Heat for Relaxation of Muscles, Using natural Pain Relieving creams such as Flexall, Arnica, Fisocream, Pain Away - There are many out there!
In a nutshell (and it's not rocket science!), reduce stress, sleep well, eat well, exercise and of course practice good hygiene. But most importantly, to contain and combat this virus, it is very important to practice Social Distancing and now, Social Isolation.
And remember if you want a PDF version of my suggested home exercise program during this time of No Gym, No Pilates Classes, No Yoga Classes, Home Confinement...Contact me at email@example.com.
- How best to support your immune system against cold and flu symptoms. Accessed on 19.3.2020 from https://www.bioceuticals.com.au/education/article/how-best-to-support-your-immune-system-against-cold-and-flu-symptoms.
- World Health Organization. Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) advice for the public. Accessed 19.3.2020 from https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public.
- Health experts criticise NHS advice to take ibuprofen for Covid-19. Accessed on 19.3.2020 at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/16/health-experts-criticise-nhs-advice-to-take-ibuprofen-for-covid-19
- 9 Key Foods that Reduce Inflammation. Accessed on 19.3.2020 from https://www.happihuman.com/blog/9-key-foods-that-reduce-inflammation?rq=key%20foods%20that%20reduce%20inflammation.