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May 5, 2020

Taking Care of the Full Body

In the past few months, we have seen rapid changes in our lives, disrupting our typical work and health routines. Many people are finding it difficult to stay active and exercise on a regular basis, and just as many find themselves eating out of boredom or stress while stuck at home. Here are some tips to make your health a priority during quarantine:

Exercise is one of the best things we can do to stay healthy, both for our body and mind. Robert N. Butler, M.D. Former Director, National Institute on Aging stated, “If exercise could be packed in a pill, it would be the single most widely prescribed and beneficial medicine in the nation.” In addition to preventing disease, regular physical activity can help you sleep better, feel better, think better and perform daily tasks more easily. To get started with exercise, try these tips:

  • Find something you enjoy. If you don’t enjoy it, you won’t do it!
  • Remember, exercise comes in many forms, like walking in your neighborhood, climbing stairs, gardening, an exercise class on TV, lifting weights or cycling to name a few.
  • Make it a habit. This is best done by making a SMART goal (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely). For example, set a goal to walk in your neighborhood at a brisk pace for you, 10 minutes a day, 4X/week at 7 AM, working towards a 40-minute walk in 6-8 weeks.

Including nutrient-rich foods in your diet such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and lean proteins helps boost immunity, prevent chronic disease and improve energy. If you are stuck at home, you might find yourself reaching for less healthy foods when bored, or in the habit of snacking while binge-watching that gripping new show. Here are some tips to help optimize your nutrition:

  • If you are working from home, set up shop outside the kitchen. It can be easy to distract ourselves from work by wandering into the kitchen or opening the refrigerator, especially if they are in our line of sight.
  • Set time aside for regular meals and snacks throughout the day. Use your time at home to learn a new cooking skill or try out some new recipes. For inspiration, check out the Avance Care Get Well, Stay Well, Be Well Recipe Book.
  • Keep healthy snacks that you enjoy in your line of sight in the kitchen and put the less healthy treats in the pantry. This will make it more likely for you to grab the nutrient rich foods when you wander into the kitchen.

Managing stress during this time is important for our physical and mental well-being. With the news constantly changing, it seems we are always having to shift and adjust our day-to-day routines to ensure safety and health. Here are some tips to create a sense of normalcy:

  • Continue getting up and going to bed at the same time and get dressed for the day as if you were going to work or running daily errands. Encourage your family to do the same!
  • Unwind with a good book, puzzle, coloring book or television show that requires minimal sustained mental effort.
  • Minimize intake of daily news. Commit to watching the news for a limited time during the day, just getting what you need to know and getting out of there!

Do not neglect your health during the pandemic. It is critical that you do not put off important preventive care and that you stay on top of your treatment plan for chronic conditions if you have one. Neglecting conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and more put you at increased risk of complications from COVID-19. Your doctor may be able to see you in the comfort of your own home through telehealth. It’s easier than you think!

Visit Avance Care’s online booking page to schedule a telehealth or in-person primary care appointment today!

For nutrition and behavioral wellness appointments, including telehealth options, call 919-237-1337.

If pain is keeping you from being active, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with Results Physiotherapy. Whether you prefer a live appointment in the clinic, one-to-one care through a video visit, or an in-person session in your home, you can receive physical therapy in a way that best meets your needs.

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