Tips For Reducing Covid-19 Risk
The groups most susceptible to COVID-19, besides the elderly, are those with diabetes, heart issues, high blood pressure, asthma and/or obesity. It only takes one of these conditions, called “co-morbidities”, to be at increased susceptibility. Why is this? Each of the above conditions affects the heart. For example: with diabetes, the blood vessels are being assaulted all over the body, including the vessels going to the heart, eyes, brain, organs and extremities. Diabetes is a cardiovascular disease; COVID-19 strikes the heart and respiratory system.
About 70% of the immune system resides in the gut. People with chronic illness have an unhealthy gut. Therefore, the biggest part of our attention should be focused on changing the environment of the gut. We do that with the food we eat. That’s not the end of it, though; it’s important to get 7-8 hours of good solid sleep, manage stress and exercise.
What to eat? It’s your choice when it comes to the vegetable department! Leafy greens, cauliflower, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, cucumber, peppers, beans, root vegetables (beets, turnips, carrots), broccoli, and brussels sprouts are all great choices. Eating fruit everyday is important as well: focus on melon, berries, mango, banana, cherries, citrus, and pineapple. All of these fruits and vegetables will supply you with amazing vitamins and minerals that will help to ward off or lessen symptoms of COVID-19. Seeds and nuts such as walnuts, pumpkin seeds (pepitas), raw almonds, hemp, flax and chia are a good way to bring healthy fats to your diet.
As I mentioned before, good, restful sleep is imperative. An average of 7-8 hours per night is optimal. A few tips for a restful night’s sleep:
• Eliminate or keep alcohol to a minimum
• Turn off all screens one hour before bedtime
• Go to bed at the same time every night
• Exercise so your muscles will need rest from being worked
There are things we can do to reduce stress, but I like to look at it more as “managing stress”. Everybody has it. With so many related health implications, the people who know how to handle that stress are the ones most likely to retain their health.
Meditation has been shown to change the circuitry of the brain, which enables us to process stress in a more positive way. A couple of apps to check out for guided meditation are “Calm” and “Headspace”. Another great activity, Yoga, is both a form of stress reduction and good exercise.
Exercise is important for all body systems. Our bodies are meant to move; movement keeps our tissues supple. Exercise helps to circulate nutrients throughout the body and helps us expel waste products. These waste products can create havoc and illness if held in the body too long. A good, consistent walking program is a way to greatly impact the entire body. Of course, there are many different ways to exercise, but walking is one of the best. It is also the minimum people should partake in.
Incorporating these tips into your life will help you lessen your vulnerabilities. The bigger changes you make and the quicker you make them, the longer your body has a chance to boost its immune system.