Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have found themselves with more time on their hands and fewer people around them. For those struggling with obesity, this has presented an opportunity to take a closer look at their health and well-being.
According to the US government, being obese increases your risk of serious illness, such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer.
It’s no secret that the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to many people eating out of emotional rather than physical need. While this is certainly challenging, it’s also an opportunity to examine your own health and wellbeing and consider making some changes.
Whether you’re currently struggling with weight issues or just want to be prepared for the future, read on for useful tips on how to lose weight safely during the pandemic.
Eat What You Need
One of the best things that could ever happen to anyone is to lose weight. Everyone wants to be happy and healthy, and the relief of shedding those unwanted pounds is unimaginable. But trying to lose weight during the pandemic can be challenging.
It’s easy to go into ‘emergency mode’ when things get tough. Instead of worrying about what you need, stress focuses on the urgent and you ignore the rest. But it’s important to keep in mind that your body needs calories to build and maintain lean muscle and to function properly. So it is crucial to feed your body properly during this time of crisis.
Although your taste buds may be on a food detox diet, your stomach still needs regular meals. So try to feed it healthily as often as possible. You don’t want to deprive yourself of food because you’re worried about being undernourished. This could result in serious health complications. When you feel hungry, reach for a fruit or vegetable instead of a sweet dessert. These will satisfy your hunger while also providing you with essential nutrients.
If you’re regularly putting yourself in stressful situations because of anxiety or depression, then this can also contribute to weight gain. It’s long been known that stress puts the ‘brakes’ on the body’s natural hormone production, resulting in a slowed metabolism and weight gain. If you recognise this as a problem for yourself, then it’s time to take a step back and examine the source of your stress. Try to reduce stress as much as possible during this time of crisis.
If you find that certain situations are causing you more stress than others, then work on changing them. Sometimes it’s difficult to realise that certain situations are giving you more stress than others. But if you look at the big picture, you’ll see that everything you do and experience is shaping you and making you who you are. So try to take a longer-term view. Instead of focusing on the present, dream about the future and the life you want to lead.
It’s easy for someone who’s been laid off work to sit at home and fret about their weight. However, this is a golden opportunity to get active. Going for a walk, getting a workout at the gym, or playing sports with your kids are all ways of bringing a sense of normalcy into your life during this time of crisis.
If you’re struggling with weight loss, then chances are you’ve been sedentary for way too long. Get moving and join a gym or take up a sport. Even if it’s only for a few hours a day, it’s better than nothing.
When it comes to losing weight, there are several tactics that successful trainers and dieticians use. One of the most effective methods is a calorie-counting diet. On this type of diet, you simply eat the amount of calories you need to sustain your current weight. You won’t lose weight quickly, but you will ensure that you lose it safely. After 12 weeks on a calorie-counting diet, patients had lost an average of 4.8 inches from their waistline, and almost half of them had dropped out of the study due to difficulty maintaining the calorie intake. This approach may be difficult during the pandemic, especially if you’re working remotely. However, if you want to achieve your perfect body, then now is the right time to put in the work.
Maintain Social Distancing
The more time you spend in close proximity to other people, the greater the risk of getting sick. This is particularly important during the pandemic when it’s easy for people to get dehydrated and sick. It’s also important to maintain social distancing even when life seems to be back to normal. Keep your distance from other people as much as possible to avoid the spread of the new coronavirus. If you feel vulnerable, then it could be a sign that you should be more cautious.
Even if you feel healthy, it would still be advisable to maintain a distance from other people. Studies show that those who maintain a greater distance from others are less likely to get sick. So it’s not just about you and how you feel – it’s about protecting the greater community.
As we’ve established, your body needs calories to function properly. The problem is that some foods have a lot of calories while others don’t contain that many. The key to losing weight safely and effectively is to consume fewer calories than you need. This can be challenging if you don’t know how many calories you need. Luckily, there are tools to help you figure this out. For example, the Nutrition Facts panel on every food product contains the calorie information you need. If you’re unable to read this information easily, then put the food in front of you and break it down into bite size portions. This way, you’ll easily be able to determine how many calories you’re taking in.
If you’re used to eating highly processed foods, then it can be difficult to shift to whole foods. During the pandemic, it is particularly essential to ensure your nutrition is rich in nutrients. If you’re not getting the nutrients you need in sufficient amounts from food, then it’s time to consider taking supplements. Talk to your doctor about which ones would be suitable for your situation and needs.
Monitor Your Bedding Habits
One of the main reasons people get sick is because of poor sleeping habits. We all know that quality sleep promotes hormonal secretions that help us to maintain a healthy weight. If you want to lose weight safely during the pandemic, then it’s important to establish good sleeping habits. Make sure you’re in bed at a regular time and try to get at least seven hours of sleep each night. Reduce your caffeine intake and avoid unhealthy foods and drinks, especially those that contain sugar. Finally, make sure your bedroom is warm and comfortable. A comfortable bed and bedding can improve your quality of sleep more than you’d expect. This may mean investing in some good bedding and/or a silk sleeping mask to block out excess lighting. If you think that your sleeping habits are putting you at risk of illness, then it may be time to reevaluate your lifestyle and see what changes need to be made to improve your health.
Your body fluids play an important role in keeping you healthy. On the one hand, having a low fluid intake can result in you being at risk of dehydration. This, in turn, can lead to irritability, poor concentration, and even fainting. On the other hand, drinking enough fluids can prevent you from feeling cold and can be a natural source of vitamins and minerals. So, to keep your body in good condition, make sure you drink sufficient amounts of fluid each day. This may mean consuming more calories than you need and it doesn’t always have to be pleasant, but it will ensure you remain healthier.
It’s important to remember that this is a time of crisis and many people will be carrying extra weight as a result of the stresses and anxieties of daily living. Reaching out for help isn’t a bad idea, as there are some great support services and resources available. The key is to find the ones that work for you and use them to the best of their ability. When you’re feeling better, it’ll be easier to shed those extra pounds and move towards your healthier, slimmer self. So, take care of yourself and don’t forget – your health and wellbeing is important.