Easy Ways to Eat Healthy During Quarantine
Many people turn to food in times of stress, boredom, anxiety, and idleness as a source of comfort. Unfortunately, this is a recipe for weight gain. Therefore, while many things are out of our control during this pandemic, what you eat shouldn’t. Eating a well-balanced diet now that you’re stuck at home is vital in maintaining a healthy weight and living a healthy lifestyle.
Additionally, good nutrition is crucial for your immune system, especially now that your body needs to fight against COVID-19. But, many individuals are worried they may indulge in highly processed foods since they have limited access to fresh foods. However, simply because you can’t go out to buy groceries each time you need them doesn’t mean you should eat foods high in fats, sugars, and salts.
Here are some tips that can help you eat healthy during the quarantine.
- Prioritize fresh products and ingredients
To start with, stock up on fresh produce such as vegetables, fruits, and dairy products. You can store them in your freezer to prolong their shelf-life. Some of the foods you can stock up on include:
- Kale and spinach
- Frozen berries
- Onions, garlic, and coriander
- Spices, e.g., turmeric, paprika, and cinnamon
- Apples and bananas
- Tomatoes – can be canned or whole
When cooking, ensure you use your fresh ingredients to get all the nutrients your body needs for a strong immune system. Store any leftovers to avoid food wastage.
- Sign up to save
One common misconception about eating healthy is that it’s expensive. Although eating healthy isn’t cheap, it doesn’t have to break your bank. You can easily sign up for the membership program at your local grocer to receive special discounts and deals of your grocery bill each year. Also, loading up on coupons on your membership card helps you save money each time you shop.
- Smart snack hacks
Snacking is the leading cause of weight gain since people always opt for unhealthy choices like chips, sweets, and cakes. Besides, now that you’re around food all the time, satisfying your sugar cravings can be tempting. Snacking isn’t bad for you, but if it falls under the category of greasy, salty, and sugary foods, it’s time to change up your habits.
Some healthy snacks you can make include:
If you have to eat traditional snacks such as cake and chips, go for healthier options like kale chips and low-fat cakes. Another smart snack hack is to drink a glass of water when you feel like snacking and waiting for 30 minutes. If you still crave a snack, drink another glass of water. The filling effect will reduce your desire to eat something unhealthy.
- Establish an eating routine
Having no eating schedule or mealtimes can cause you to overindulge in food, eating more than your required calorie count. Hence, it’s vital to plan your mealtimes in advance and stick to them. The last thing you want is ordering in because it is lunchtime and you don’t know what to cook. Meal plans and routines not only help you to control your hunger levels but also manage your stress and anxiety.
- Practice mindful eating
This is the act of being fully aware of what you eat and your experience with it. For instance, avoid eating straight from the bag as you won’t see how much you’re eating or appreciate what you’re eating. Moreover, don’t try and finish your entire plate when you’re full. Instead, safely store the leftovers for another meal later on.
Another mindful eating practice is removing distractions such as TV, phone, and computers while eating. Such distractions cause you to eat more than is required since your mind is fully concentrated on them instead of your food.
- Eat more vegetables
You don’t have to go vegan to stay healthy since you can plan a veggie day in your week to eat as many vegetables as you can. Some great vegetable options include quinoa, lentils, black beans, carrots, and kale.
Eating healthy during quarantine is key to maintaining your health and well-being during these unprecedented times.