Today we are all living through the unknown. We are all wondering what is happening, and what will happen. Nobody seems to have answers and we are all being impacted by COVID-19.
It’s heavy stuff, no matter our age, situation or where we live. As much as we can stay positive, we are recognizing the reality. This is a tough time.
Do we know how long this will last? No, we don’t. So, what can we do? What can we control?
One of the few things we do have control over is how we respond. That matters more now than ever. Below are some ideas to keep your physical, mental and spiritual health as strong as possible, using meals and food as your touchstones:
- Create a routine around meal times. Sleeping the day away might seem appealing; however, it could contribute to increased depression and less exposure to sunlight. Get up at a similar time that you normally would and get to bed at a decent hour. Implement some degree of structure such as having regular times for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Similar to when you would be working or keeping your regular schedule, avoid going longer than four to six hours without a main meal. and keep your breakfast within two hours of waking.
- Get creative with your food. Let’s face it. Everyone is wishing they had more chicken around the house. Now is the time to get creative and try some new things. This may mean using frozen vegetables or eating proteins that aren’t your favorite, but the recipes on Skyterra at Home could be a perfect place to search. Try making a frittata, soup or side dish that you can enjoy for a few days. Pull out the food processor and make energy bites. Use the blender to make a homemade salad dressing. You might as well make a mess in your kitchen because I think we will all have more time or more hands to clean it up.
- Step outside of your protein comfort zone. Add black beans to a burrito bowl. Try making a chickpea salad mixed with feta cheese, strawberries, olive oil, and tomatoes. Hard boil eggs and make an egg salad with mayonnaise, lemon juice and seasonings. Defrost frozen edamame and prepare a simple stir fry. Pull out the crock pot and make a lentil soup or stew. Take advantage of the frozen section if possible and bake frozen fish filets. Avoid hoarding and please don’t fight with anyone over chicken, it isn’t worth it.
- Be mindful with your snacks. Snack food may be calling your name right now. Whether it is out of boredom, sadness or stress, slow down with your snacks by placing them on a plate and sitting down when you eat. It could be easy to let hyper-palatable foods take over your diet; slowing down can at least create more awareness around what and why you are eating in the first place.
- Eat fruit to satisfy sweet cravings. Apples, pears, cuties, bananas, berries and more all seem to be relatively well stocked in stores. Ideas include pairing a pear with peanut butter, making an aged cheese and apple salad, top oatmeal with frozen berries or make an almond butter and banana sandwich.
- Prepare passed-down family recipes. Get into your family history by honoring recipes that have been passed down. This could look like a casserole or baked good that may provide some degree of comfort during this difficult time. Remember to eat mindfully and savor every bite.
- Implement a soothing evening ritual. As the news continues to unfold as the day goes on, the stress may increase. Relax with a cup of herbal tea with ingredients like lavender. Remember too that food at this point in the day may not be the answer. Take a hot bath while using soaking salts, practice legs up the wall for 10 minutes, or read a new book that has been sitting on your shelf.
- Seek telehealth support. If you see a therapist, dietitian or health professional on a regular basis, keep your appointments by requesting remote communication. This will allow you to process and work through everything that is going on right now. Everyone is going through this transition and it is key you continue to prioritize your health.
Often we have to rebuild to get stronger. Right now, we are in “breakdown” mode. If a bone breaks, it strengthens in the healing process. When muscles break down, they repair stronger. Maybe this will finally unite us more than ever, so we can all come back stronger together. From all of us at Skyterra, we are thinking of you, your families and your futures. Please reach out for needed support and connection.
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