How to stay healthy during Lockdown

On 24th March our prime minister imposed a nationwide lockdown for the next 21 days in an attempt to slow down the spreading of Coronavirus. As the situation is getting worse, self – isolation has to be one of the precautionary measures to avoid coming in contact and protecting ourselves from this deadly virus. This news led to chaos overall the country.

With the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be easier to bring a lifestyle change in this break. How many times have we heard ourselves say “I can’t exercise or follow my diet due properly due to work, studies or busy schedule”. Sounds familiar. eh? Thus, this quarantine period is perfect for us cribbers, procrastinators and all those fitness freaks and ones who are already on a weight loss program to work on diet, exercise and inculcate a  healthy lifestyle along the way. Let’s give our body the proper care it deserves. Gyms are shut and though food is exempted they weren’t available on the shelves.

Nourishment for Immunity

Well, nourishment is essential for health, particularly during this time when the immune system may require to fight back, it can be easier than you may think to maintain healthy eating habits with stocking up good foods during your quarantine. As there is limited access to fresh foods, let’s start stocking up according to the meals and food group our body needs on a daily basis and make a proper routine to achieve our health goals.

On waking up start your day with gargles, this will not only disinfect your mouth but also prevent tooth decay. For this take 1 cup of water with some salt. Gargle well. Then have 1 glass of warm water. As we need to boost, improve and optimize our immunity add some drops of lemon in it.

Exercising during lockdown

We are guilty of lazing around way too much and our daily activity is on a pause. In addition to that, our calorie intake has been increased tremendously. So let’s start incorporating exercise as there should be calorie expenditure in order to stay fit.

Dancing, playing with children, and performing domestic household chores such as dusting, cleaning etc can be the way to stay active at home.

Also, there are a number of apps that help and guide you but the following recommendations can be followed at home, with no specific equipment, and with limited area.

Push ups/knee push ups- 12reps * 3 sets
 Squats- 15reps*3 sets
Burpees- 6reps *3sets
Mountain climbers- 20reps*3 sets
Lunges- 8 each leg*3 sets
Plank hold- 30secs- 1 minute
Side Planks – 30 sec – 1 min , each side
Stairs climing * 5 times
Jumo Squats 10 reps * 3 sets
Bicycle Crunches – 10 reps * 3 sets
Sit Ups – 15 reps * 3 sets
Glute Bridge – 10-12 reps *3 sets.
Jumping Jack – Start with 200 and increase it gradually
Skipping – 5 min initially
Jogging in place – 45 sec * 3 sets

Stress management is an important aspect in keeping ourselves healthy mentally and physically. During this strenuous time so you can engage in breathing exercises for 10 minutes or so, atleast twice a day.

Sample diet for an Indian household

BREAKFAST

– As it is the first meal it should be full of nutrition. You can stock up foods that are high in protein and fiber for breakfast.

Protein – Eggs are the best options as they are full of protein and lesser in calories. You can add chicken, beans, sausages, whey protein.

Diary high in protein- cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, cheese, fresh cream.

Fiber – fruits – apple, pomegranate, berries, strawberries, melons, veggies – lettuce, spinach, tomato, etc .

Grains – high in fiber like quinoa, oats, muesli, multigrain bread

Fats– olive oil, butter, avocado, mayonnaise, peanut butter, nuts, and oilseeds.

List of dishes you can prepare –Multigrain sandwich stuffed with cottage cheese/sausages/chicken patty/beans patty and add veggies to it and some cheese. Open burger wrapped up of lettuce and stuffed with cheese, avocado, and chicken patty/cottage cheese. Quinoa meal with lots of veggies, muesli, and oats with fruits along with milk, top it with flax seeds/nuts/chia seeds; Sandwich with peanut butter, Smoothies high in fiber viz made up of veggies like spinach, cucumber, mint leaves with lemon drops or milk-based smoothies blended with fruits and nuts or can use peanut butter or add 1 scoop of whey protein. Oats crepe or besan chilla with stuffed veggies is easy and nutritious.

MID MORNING

– For snacking in between, go for low-calorie foods like cucumber and tomato salads, lemon water or buttermilk. We generally start snacking out of boredom which is very high in calories.

LUNCH AND DINNER

These are the major meals of the day and we are feasting on these days due to lockdown. The following can be included for lunch and dinner. Though the food groups are more or less the same due to lack of supplies and access to fresh foods but the portions have to be controlled and calorie counted. For dinner try and take a lesser portion as compared to lunch as it is the last meal of the day and our metabolism slows down by night.

Protein – By protein, we can only think of chicken, fish, steaks, etc. All flesh-eater can stock up the canned and frozen meats like chicken, tuna, beef, sausages. As an alternative to include plant protein and for vegetarians go for dairy, nuts, seeds and beans, tofu, tempeh, lentils, chickpea, peanuts.

Diary high in protein- cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, cheese, fresh cream.

Fiber – Veggies – lettuce, spinach, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, green beans, okra, cabbage, cauliflower, tomato, zucchini, bell pepper, celery.

Grains – high in fiber like quinoa, multigrain bread, multigrain roti, daliya, couscous, brown rice, multigrain bun, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat spaghetti.

Fats – olive oil, butter, avocado, mayonnaise, nuts, and oilseeds.

List of dishes you can prepare – Indian gravies like makhni, haryali, white gravy, tomato onion gravy with chicken/fish/tofu/paneer and enjoy with multigrain roti/bread / brown bread / brown rice ( can add almonds, cashews or mix seeds for flavor). Multigrain roti with vegetables. Don’t forget to add protein. You can prepare veggies rich in fiber and add a protein like palak paneer, soya beans or beans. Quinoa meal with veggies and beans/soya. Daliya with protein options and lots of veggies. Cous Cous meal with protein options. Give a variety by eating salad once in a while – add protein and lots of veggies along with fats. You can have wraps made up of lettuce / spinach / multigrain roti. These are really tasty and full of nutrition ( can prepare in form of shawarma ). You can also prepare moong dal chilla. Any Chinese based meal ex. Chicken/paneer/soya chili, noodles made up of multigrain. It can include multigrain pasta along with cheese/cream/butter or prepared in Indian meals. While preparing burgers to include veggies and very little fats and patty made up of protein.

SNACKS–

This meal usually consists of all the junk food. Try and shift to healthy habits and options listed below. Have green tea, flavoured tea, black coffee, lemon tea instead of a normal tea which is high in calories.

Protein –Beans, chicken, whey protein, eggs.

Diary high in protein- cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, cheese, fresh cream.

Fiber – fruits – apple, pomegranate, berries, strawberries, melons, veggies – lettuce, spinach, tomato, celery.

Grains – oats, muesli, multigrain bread

Fats– olive oil, butter, avocado, mayonnaise, peanut butter, nuts, and oilseeds.

List of dishes you can prepare – Flavoured yogurt – blend fruits with curd, a small bowl of fruits, green smoothies which helps in digestion, milk-based smoothies along with whey protein or nuts or fruits. You can enjoy veggies in different forms like carrot fries with a small portion of cream, baked veggies with baked beans / baked chicken/paneer, a bowl of moong sprouts, bowl chickpea salad/beans. Apple slices with peanut butter, mix nuts and seeds, celery sticks with cream cheese, hummus and veggies. Egg boiled with 1 cucumber.

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