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The COVID-19 pandemic has put many of us on high alert, particularly if there’s anyone in your household who has health considerations that put them at special risk. However, while sheltering in place may have reduced your risk of viral infections, many of us are not eating as healthy as possible. Many of us are also not exercising enough. Keep reading to see what changes you need to make to your family’s health this year.
Eat Lower on the Food Chain
Keeping up your family’s health is of the utmost importance. A simple way to improve your diet and take pressure off your budget is to eat a vegetarian diet. While not everyone is interested in making that a permanent decision, being a part-time vegetarian is a wonderful way to
- lower your intake of saturated fats
- reduce your food expenses
- increase your vegetable intake
For example, vegetarian lasagna loaded with fresh veggies such as zucchini and mushrooms will give you a big boost of Vitamin C and antioxidants. Add good cheese and you’ve got calcium. Use wheat pasta for fiber and add a spinach salad for a boost of Vitamin A. Vegetarian choices may be different, but they can be delicious once or twice a week. If your family is not interested in vegetarian options, you can still try to eat out less in order to improve your overall health. This can not only help your body, but it can also save you money in the long-run. Don’t worry about stopping to eat out immediately, you can lessen the number of days per week you eat out or have a designated day of the week or month that the family gets to enjoy something extra.
Keep or Start a Masking Habit
If you have a masking habit in place, keep going. Consider investing in n95 respirator masks for the whole family. If COVID numbers in your area are going up, try to wash or disinfect your mask daily in order to lessen the chances of a case in your home.
If you’re unable to tolerate wearing a mask, consider investing in a face shield that either fits on your collar or over your forehead. Once you get accustomed to this, you may be able to tolerate a face mask eventually, which will be safer. If you find that you get claustrophobic in a mask, try a lipstick bracket to give yourself more space.
Invest in Water Gear
With the right water gear, water becomes an easier go-to. Set up your refrigerator to make focusing on increasing your water intake easy. As soon as your family members open the refrigerator looking for a snack or a beverage, the first thing they see should be a cool bottle of water.
Get reusable water bottles for everyone in your family. This can help your family’s health by staying hydrated. Get a countertop water filter that you fill each night once you fill up the water bottles. Once you get hooked on fresh filtered water for drinking, you’ll find that coffee and tea tastes much better made from filtered water.
Make Exercise a Habit for Your Family’s Health
Structure your day to include exercise to benefit your family’s health. Put out your sneakers and some sweats so that the first thing you do each day is go for a walk. Find a spot halfway through your daily walking habit where you can stretch your back, legs and upper body.
Once you have walking ingrained in your daily habits, find a gentle yoga video that both interests you and entertains you. Make yoga one of your coffee breaks if you’re working from home, or do it late in the afternoon when you need a nap. If you tend to get sleepy after your lunch, start a meditation practice to help you focus and rest your mind. Keeping your mental health strong can help tremendously in keeping your physical health strong. Do exercises that bring you some peace at the end of the day.
Get Obvious In Your Choices
Keep the healthiest snacking choices front and center for you and your family members. A pretty plate loaded with fresh fruit will look great on your counter and make choosing a crisp apple or a bright yellow banana an easy decision. Chips on the counter become your automatic food choice when you want to mindlessly snack on something.
Additionally, if you love salty things and don’t feel satisfied from a piece of fruit, try pistachios in the shell. These treats are not only extremely healthy, high in protein and yummy, but they take some effort to enjoy. If you tend to mindlessly snack, having food that you have to tussle with may make it easier to be mindful about your food choices.
Final Thoughts on Your Family’s Health
Anything you have to labor to get done will be a chore. If the first thing you see when you open the refrigerator is soda, or if all the snacks on the counter are loaded with salt and preservatives, then water and fruit will work. Make healthy choices the easiest choices. This will be imperative to your family’s health.