The COVID-19 pandemic has made us self-quarantined at home and along with that, it has disturbed the whole routine that we follow. Well, the lockdown indeed has started to brew anxiousness, stress, and boredom. The only relief people have is food.
Snacks, comfort food, junk food, desserts, etc will help in taking the edge off. However, too much of it will not be good for our health and that too for your weight. Studies show that during this period of lockdown, there are huge sales of unhealthy snack items. What happens is that people end up gaining weight due to overeating, lack of physical activities and even being lazy.
Why Is It Necessary to Lose Weight?
As per various studies if you are obese or overweight, losing weight will be a great way to lower the risk of suffering from potential health issues. Various doctors and nutritionists feel that many individuals gain a huge amount of benefit in losing even a small amount i.e. 5% of their weight by keeping it off.
Now if you are obese or overweight, you do have the risk of suffering from –
- Heart Disease
- High Blood Pressure
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Certain Type of Cancer
- Back Pain
Besides these factors, coronavirus will lead to more server symptoms and complications among people suffering from obesity-related conditions.
Eating Healthy, Wisely and Timely
Now it is easy to assume that since most people are homebound, they have easy access to snacks and foodstuffs. What you need to realize is that there is a latent advantage in this and that is commonly ignored. As there is no option to eat out, you are restricted to eating home-cooked food.
As we all know home-cooked food is healthier, calorie-less, and even low in trans-fat. For gaining a further advantage, we can gorge on low calories snacks as well as food items like salads, sprouts, etc that is the best replacement for fried potato veggies, etc.
Most of us are not burning off calories during this period of lockdown; it is natural that our fuel food intake would be very much lesser in this period. Here fuel foods which are carbohydrates consist of bread, rice, potato, etc. You need to curtail the intake of these foods completely.
Furthermore, as the human body will not be requiring any energy while sleeping, it is better to avoid carbohydrates during dinner time. Some people might not be satisfied with this curtailed intake of carbohydrates, in that case, you can increase the intake of non-carbohydrate or low foodstuffs like freshly cooked veggies, fruits, beans, etc.
Here the importance is mainly on the regular and timely meals and that should not be over-emphasized. One thing you need to realize is that the metabolism of the human body will work better if nutritious food is consumed at regular intervals than erratically. Most importantly, you should avoid having dinner extremely late and even sleeping immediately.
Here such kind of habit of having regular meals needs to be followed regularly even when there is no lockdown. Also, such habits are very much important for people that are diabetic as it helps in avoiding erratic blood sugar levels.
You Are Under Social Lockdown. It Is Not Exercise Lockdown
There is no point to discuss that exercising is great and there are huge medical and physical benefits of it. Do you know there are additional as well as lesser-known benefits of exercising? That is very much relevant to the crisis period.
Well, the first one is that exercising is an exceptionally good immunity booster, and this is quite important if one is infected with the coronavirus. The second reason is that exercise is a mood elevator and provides anti-anxiety effects too. When you are exercising, the chemical called endorphins is released. This will lead to feeling happy and lowers the feeling of depression and anxiety.
As we are completely homebound, it is necessary to adopt certain exercises that are suitable in restricted areas. Frankly, these could be simple but less aggressive exercises like skipping, static running, etc. You do have the option to go on with the aggressive forms like yoga, crunches, Pilates, etc.
The exercising schedule you follow must have all kinds of muscle building, stretching, toning, and cardio-respiratory exercises. Regarding the time, exercise can be done at any time of the day, but most exercise specialists feel that you should adhere to the fixed duration and time.
About the duration, you can go for 45 minutes to one hour each day for exercising and that would be adequate. Also, you need to make sure that exercising must be done on most days in a week and if possible, every day. Plus, you can follow different exercising schedules for avoiding all kinds of boredom and monotony.
You can go through various online websites and tutorials to gain more details of exercising. You might find out new or improved exercises that target your different muscle groups and even helps your body and mind to feel relaxed.
Sometimes It Is All in The Mind
Like other modern-day diseases, you might be surprised to know that obesity has a strong ‘mind’ factor. Of course, the country requires us to be indoors, but it will not need us to eat more and start gaining weight or become inactive.
Well, contrary to this, the time has come for us to evolve as individuals and try to make changes in things that are wrong in our lifestyles. To that extend, overcoming this tendency of consuming more food and exercising less is somewhat a mind game. Overcoming or winning over one’s temptation is really a daunting task and somewhat unachievable at first. However, it gets easier and even achievable along with the passage of time.
Make Sure to Monitor Yourself
Unlike other species on the earth, human beings are more result oriented. Humans like to easily evaluate and assess the various responses related to lifestyle choices. And regarding weight gain, measuring such kind of benefit is quite easy.
All you must use is a weighing scale. And how often? Well, just once a week is enough. By measuring your body weight, you will get a clear idea of where your body weight is headed. Ultimately, it is easy to maintain one’s weight by making some good lifestyle choices, especially in this period of lockdown.
Frankly, what we are going to gain in these three weeks will take years to lose.
Steps in Losing Extra Pounds In Safe Ways
1) Put Down Your Snacks
Keep in mind that when you are snacking right, it will add the required nutritional values to your diet. When done poorly, this so-called snacking will lead to excess energy, a high amount of unhealthy fats, and added sugar. This will lead to serious weight gain.
Nutrition experts recommend that one needs to select snacks that have a high amount of proteins. Also, proteins are significant for appetite regulation. A snack that is rich in protein will assist in regulating one’s appetite throughout the day and even avoid any kind of overeating during the main meals. One can try Greek yogurt along with berries. Even a protein-rich dip filled with veggie sticks, natural nut butter, or a handful of baked zucchini fries or nuts can be a great snack.
2) Have Lunch with A Salad
When you are planning on losing some of the extra kilos, try to fill your plates with nutrient-dense and low kilo food. By adding a few delicious and healthy additions like spices, roast veggies, and even a tasty dressing, you can move from the basic salad to ones that are very much satisfying and delicious.
Having foods like veggies that are rich in fibre will help you to feel fuller for a long time. This will help in preventing you from overeating. Also, if you are going to have lettuce, you can add a tin of tuna along with three cups of salad, a palm portion of some good proteins, and a decent savings of wholegrain carbs with olive oil dressing.
Here your choice of protein can be lean lamb, chicken breast, salmon, and some couple of eggs. While the carbs can be quinoa, sweet potato, and two whole-grain crackers.
3) Go for the Mediterranean Diet
Currently, most of the doctors and health experts are recommend following the Mediterranean diet as it is one of the healthy ways of losing weight. Not only it is one of the interesting, nourishing diets, but it is simply focused on weight management. Plus, it is considered as the healthiest diet in the world.
People having or following the Mediterranean diet suffer from lower rates of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and even mental health conditions. Plus, this provides you with a better time to go to your kitchen and refine your cooking skills. Through cooking more, you can lower the intake of such foods and know what things you are putting into your body.
When you are cooking more, you will reduce the intake of the foods and even know what you are putting in your body. Hence, you will be able to make a healthier food choice.
4) Focus on Season and Make Veg A Hero
Most health experts feel that seasonal produce is delicious as well as nutritious. Plus, they correspond to what one has been eating. For example, vitamin C filled fruits like grapefruit and orange are found abundant in winter and they are excellent for fighting the pesky colds. Also, root veggies like parsnips, carrots, potatoes, and pumpkin are seasonal in the autumn and winter. Also, they are perfect for making stews, casseroles, and slow-cook meals.
No doubt, vegetables are the major source of fibre and these are necessary for keeping us full for a longer time and help in maintaining a healthy gut and are low in calories. So, when you are increasing the consumption of vegetables and reducing the meat as well as grains, you will remain full, however, consume fewer amounts of calories.
5) Get Rid of Booze
You might be planning on losing some kilos immediately. So, the single thing you can easily remove from your diet is alcohol. As you know alcohol is energy-dense and provides no amount of health benefits. Also, it will lead to more snacking and having larger portions of food. Plus, it leads to exercising less.
Sometimes you might not want to reduce the intake of alcohol. In that case, just plan when you would be consuming alcohol and then limit it to one to three drinks a time. Along with that you need to do forty-five minutes of vigorous exercise for the cardiovascular benefit and increasing the calorie expenditure.
Now, this can be a brisk walk or running outside. You can try the home workout or whatever you select. However, a healthy diet along with regular exercise can help you gain the best and suitable weight loss along with positive health outcomes.
6) Going for Whole Foods
Nutrition consultants and dieticians feel that one must focus on consuming whole food as much as possible. Here you must select the whole grain over the refined grains. It will even include various vegetables and fruits, seed lean proteins, nuts, etc. Of course, you can even try the plant-based options and the diary food and their suitable alternatives like soy.
Try to make use of canned food like beans, lentils, chickpeas, etc. These are very much nutritious and versatile to prepare food and use in the kitchen. Try to opt for stews, soups, salads, pasta, and stir-fries. If you are not able to get any kind of fresh veggies or fruits, then it is fine to go for tinned or frozen varieties.
Maintaining A Balance
Ultimately losing weight and being fit during the lockdown is all about balance. Also, it is about making your diet realistic. Rather than sitting idle and gaining weight that might lead to serious health conditions, it is better to be active.
Keep in mind that you need to have good immunity to fight against the COVID-19 virus and the best way for that is to be active and exercise continuously.