It is a strange time right now. The coronavirus has really made us look at our lives and our health in a different way. We are forced to stay home and now more than ever most of us are thinking about our health because the worry of getting sick. This is a good time to really think about priorities in our lives, our bonds with our families and our health.
Flu and cold season come around every year and now a new virus is also a part of that. I have heard multiple medical professionals say that they wish people would prioritize their health and hand washing like they are now during every flu season and then flu would not be so bad. Crazy thought though, what if instead of worrying about our health during certain times of the year, we thought about it year-round? If we focused on a healthy lifestyle year-round our immune system would be ready and capable of fighting off more illnesses when these “sick” times of the year come around. Instead, most people don’t think about the importance of nutrition, physical activity and managing stress until fall and winter and that is when the supplements start flying off the shelf. Notice that I said supplements, people still don’t consider a healthy diet the first line of defense against illness, when science proves that it is.
When I say healthy diet, I am not talking about all these crazy diets out there for weight loss, these diets do not provide your body with all the necessary nutrients to keep your immune system healthy. Making an effort to eat fresh fruits, vegetables, fiber, lean protein and healthy fats are what your body needs to function and fight off illness. These foods should be the first thing to incorporate into your diet when considering your immunity and health and then supplement with an extra boost of vitamins and minerals through immune boosters like vitamin c, zinc and vitamin D3.
Another immune suppresser our society deals with is stress. Stress has been proven to suppress the immune system. Stress can be managed through small daily changes such as physical activity even if that is just a walk. You can also practice meditating or anything else that helps you relax. I know this can be easier said than done, I have a baby and a toddler so I know the struggle of trying to find time to relax, especially now that we are all stuck at home with each other. When I find the time, I try to do something for myself whether that is a quick workout, taking a bath or just watching a TV show that is not Sesame Street. Do I get this opportunity everyday? Absolutely not, but when the moment presents itself, I take it.
No matter how you feel about the coronavirus and all that is happening because of it one thing is true for everyone, we are being forced to take a closer look at our health and our personal lives at home. Don’t let this life lesson slip past you. How can you be healthier year-round so that you aren’t freaking out about getting sick when things like this happen? How can you bond more with your family now that you are all forced to spend more time together? What do you now appreciate more?
This is a stressful time for everyone, which like I mentioned is not good for the immune system. Try not to worry, have faith in humanity and the future and enjoy this time that you have with your loved ones that is being forced upon you. The best thing you can do right now is focus on your health and your family’s health by nourishing your bodies inside and out. Cook a delicious and healthy meal together and get outside to enjoy the sunshine. We are blessed to live in Colorado during a time of quarantine so take advantage of that! Wash your hands, keep your distance and stay healthy everyone! We will get through this and come out better than we were before.