With the holiday season coming up, people are more eager to gather now than last year, seeing that there is a decreased number of new COVID-19 cases and the availability of vaccines. But does this mean you should let your guard down? The answer is no! As promoted by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we should continue to keep ourselves healthy along with getting vaccinated and social distancing when in groups. Not to forget wearing our masks when out, something that we should be accustomed to.
Keeping Ourselves Healthy
So how can we keep ourselves healthy, and what does staying healthy have to do with reducing our risks? By staying healthy, we are strengthening our immune system to be in top shape and can help us fight the severity of COVID-19. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, such as getting in your daily exercise, eating enough nutrients, and getting a good night's worth of sleep, are all important factors.
There are many unhealthy choices we make without knowing that weakens our immune system. For example, staying up late to finish one more episode of Squid Game but ending up watching the whole season. Ordering too much food and forcing yourself to finish it because a to-go box is 25 cents, leading to overeating. Or keeping all your assignments to start at the absolute last minute, which causes unnecessary stress. These are just some small things that may not seem to affect your body, but they will slowly build up.
Keeping a balanced lifestyle can look like having a good work-life balance or a good balance between socializing and schoolwork if you’re still in school. Having a plan and splitting up your work accordingly so that you are not constantly stressed over deadlines is a great way to help maintain this balance. Taking breaks in between activities to hydrate, the daily recommendation is 64 ounces or 8 cups, or fueling up on nutrients can help your brain recharge and give you more energy for the rest of the day. Here are some ways to strengthen your immune system.
Since we started school, it has been drilled into our brains that we should follow the food pyramid and get enough servings of each category per day to maintain a healthy food diet. Eating enough fruits and vegetables can give you a lot of natural Vitamin C, which will help strengthen and boost your immune system. Eating protein helps cells build and operate in the immune system. Eating carbohydrates give the body energy to function while you carry out daily tasks and also helps strengthen the immune system in its own way. Overall, eating a healthy balanced diet is the first step in keeping your immune system strong and healthy.
Gym memberships may not be the cheapest subscription we can have, and we may also not have time to be consistently going to the gym. While the gym is the best place to get all kinds of exercise, we should not think of going to the gym as the only way to get exercises done. Get your exercises in by walking places instead of taking the car out for a 5-minute drive or by walking those extra blocks instead of taking the bus for another few stops. Working out helps reduce inflammation and boosts the immune cells, strengthening our immune system.
Adults generally need 6-8 hours of sleep, depending on the person. Sleeping for a certain amount of time is not the only thing we need to keep in mind but also the quality of sleep we get. Ideally, you want to experience REM cycles in your sleep, which are phases we go through to dream and let the body rest. With the proper rest and quality sleep, you are more likely to feel better about the next morning and yourself. Sleep deprivation can cause a higher risk of chronic diseases. Getting enough sleep is crucial in keeping our minds fresh and clear.
They say it takes 21 days to turn something into a habit. So, if we follow through with a routine for three weeks, then we will be able to get rid of our unhealthy lifestyle choices, turning them into healthy choices. Start the day with a cup of water, and remember to hydrate every hour. Choose to cook more and order less takeout to get more organic and fresh groceries. Set an alarm clock for when you should sleep so that you have enough sleep.
Chronic diseases – such as diabetes, cancer, asthma, and heart disease – are leading causes of death and disability. The Liu Foundation offers philanthropic GoLively app and video series promoting evidence-based lifestyle habits to prevent chronic diseases. GoLively integrated Harvard, Stanford, and CDC’s Public Health findings into an easy-to-use behavior conditioning app and series of lifestyle motivation videos to prevent chronic diseases.
GoLively app and videos cover physical, mental, social, financial, and medical health aspects with 10 healthy lifestyle habits. GoLively enables corporate social responsibility to lower the annual $4 trillion spent on preventable chronic diseases in the United States. Healthy habits can lead to improved employee health, saving healthcare cost, increasing productivity, and morale. Download the Lively Habits app to help you keep track of your 10 healthy lifestyle habits. Go Lively!