As lockdown measures ease, how can you best support your health for re-entry into the outside world? Whether you need to reset your sleep routine or get back on track with a five-day fast, nutritionist Kim Pearson has a five practical tips to help ease you back into life after lockdown.
Bring back your mealtime routine
Many people have faced more challenges than ever working from home with the temptation to comfort eat or turn to food when boredom or anxiety strikes. Your mealtime routine may have changed completely or it may be that there is no routine at all anymore. Now is the time to get back into a healthy eating routine, so set your mealtimes and plan what you’re going to eat ahead of time as much as possible. One simple way to meal prep is to cook double portions of healthy dinners and have the leftovers for lunch the next day.
Sort out your sleep
If you’ve been sleeping poorly throughout lockdown, firstly, you’re not alone, and secondly, it’s not too late to address the potential causes. Poor sleep disrupts our hormonal balance leading to increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol and our ‘hunger hormone’ ghrelin, to give just two examples. Working on improving your sleep is well worth the effort. Start out by making sure you are having your last meal four hours before bedtime and avoid caffeine in the afternoon. Switch off your phone at least an hour before bedtime and try a relaxing bath with magnesium salts to help you wind down.
Try a 5-day fast
Fasting has many well-documented health benefits. But while intermittent fasting and time restricted eating do have proven health benefits, experts point out that you need to fast for longer than a few hours to experience more profound benefits such as upregulated autophagy and stem cell generation. ProLon https://prolon.co.uk/is one of the best ways you can achieve this safely at home, since the five-day fast-mimicking diet has the same benefits of water only fasting, while allowing you to eat specially designed, nutrient-dense, plant-based mini meals. Whether you’re looking for a health reset or to lose weight gained during lockdown, a fast mimicking diet is well worth considering.”
Ensure you’re not D-eficient
You might have been reading about the ways in which Vitamin D is vital for immune system health and as we prepare to ease lockdown measures, it is more important than ever to make sure your levels are optimised. When I test clients I regularly discover Vitamin D deficiency, it is surprisingly common. You can find out your level with a simple, finger prick, at-home test kit. You can then take a daily supplement at a dose tailored to your needs. Regular exposure to sunlight is not only helpful for our vitamin D production, it also helps regulate our circadian rhythms, so a daily walk outside it a great habit to get into.
Don’t just pick up where you left off
As we begin to resume aspects of our pre-lockdown lives, it is worth considering which habits you might not want to return to. Are there things you’ve been happier or healthier without? Perhaps you didn’t need that morning croissant every day on the way to work? Maybe you’ve learnt that you can cook for yourself and don’t need to rely on high street bought lunches and takeaways? Some of your pre-lockdown habits could maybe be replaced with healthier habits picked up in lockdown such as that new online workout class or a new-found love of cooking. It’s also worth considering keeping a wellness journal to help you observe and process how you’re feeling during this unusual time.