The past year is a reminder of the importance of a healthy lifestyle. COVID-19 hits everyone differently. Those who have underlying medical conditions, live a sedentary lifestyle, and are overweight or obese are more likely to experience serious symptoms. Meanwhile, people who follow a healthy lifestyle that includes eating a balanced meal, exercising regularly, and not smoking might only experience mild symptoms — or none at all.
COVID-19 is not the only threat. In the United States, the outbreak of the highly contagious disease is coming to a close, but people will continue to grapple with illnesses in the future. A healthy routine is your first and best defense of any viruses and bacteria you will encounter throughout your life.
This summer, the first after a tragic year of illnesses and deaths, how can you keep your body healthy?
In the past year, public health officials emphasized the need for proper ventilation. To prevent the spread of illnesses, enclosed spaces, including your home, need to be aired out every once in a while to allow fresh air in.
You may not notice it, but you are breathing in polluted air inside your home. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), sometimes, air quality indoors is worse than outdoors. Certain pollutants such as smoke from the food you cook, odors from cleaning products, dust, and pet dander float in the air. If inhaled, it can trigger respiratory symptoms like coughing, sneezing, and wheezing.
However, people tend to stay indoors and use the air conditioning to keep cool during summer. That means many people will be exposed to indoor pollutants as well as disease-causing germs. It is important to open the windows and doors every once in a while to increase ventilation.
If you are worried about bugs, give storm doors a try. These secondary doors are primarily used to protect against bad weather, but when the skies are clear, they allow ventilation while keeping insects out of the house. They also increase the security of your home.
Acquire an air purifier for your air-conditioned room. Get one with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter that can remove pollutants and germs indoors, keeping your respiratory system clean and healthy.
The summer heat can make working out feel like a chore. However, it is still important to remain active when the weather is hot and humid.
Exercise, especially when done outdoors, can increase neutrophils and monocytes, your natural killer cells, and ultimately boost your immune function. Your body can fight infections better with little need for medical intervention.
Moreover, it decreases stress. The past year has been stressful, to say the least. To counteract the impact of the stress brought about by the pandemic, you need to continue exercising even if it is hot.
Stay Away from Detox Juices
There is no shortcut to health. If you want to be healthy, you need to eat a balanced diet every single day. It is a lot of work, but it is the only way to do it. These detox juices promise to cleanse your body, increase your metabolism, and give you all the nutrition your body needs to boost immune function lie. They are not only ineffective, but they can also be unhealthy.
Many are loaded with sugar to make them palatable. They are also designed to limit your intake of calories, making you feel weaker and without energy throughout the day. Moreover, detox juices may also slow down your metabolism because you are not getting enough calories to break down for energy. Your body will instead switch to breaking down muscle to keep your vital internal organs functioning.
Go on a Much-Needed Vacation
Now that restrictions are being lifted, you should go on a vacation. Vacation lowers your blood pressure, steadies your heart rate, and reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol. In short, it is good for your health.
Head to the beach or hike up a mountain and breathe in the fresh air. Take a day or two off of work. You have survived a deadly pandemic. You deserve time to unwind.
The pandemic should be a wake-up call for the American public. It is time to make health a priority. Too many people live a sedentary lifestyle and eat an unhealthy diet. It is not too late to make better choices that prioritize health. You can start improving your life this summer.