Staying Healthy in a Time of Unrest
The Healthy View
While the TAC Sport Medicine Clinic is temporarily closed due to the public health concern surrounding COVID-19, we want to regularly reach out to all of you with our Healthy View Blog. These articles will feature current, relevant topics helping you to stay healthy and engaged over the next few weeks.
During this time of shelter in place, should you have any questions for the Clinic's team of therapists, do not hesitate to reach out by emailing your questions. Your emails will be responded to as soon as possible.
As part of #thePPEdrive, the Toronto Athletic Club and Sport Medicine Clinic recently donated a significant portion of the Club and Clinic's inventory of latex gloves to Michael Garron Hospital in East York. We are proud to support all of our healthcare workers who are working tirelessly to keep us safe in this difficult time.
Learn more about #thePPEdrive here.
Immunity & Stress
Your immune system is your best protection for staying healthy right now.
Most Common Causes of Low Immunity
Let's first list the three most obvious causes that lower your immune system's ability to defend your health against infections:
- An unhealthy diet (fast, junk, and processed food; sugar; alcohol; drugs; etc.)
- Lack of physical movement and exercise
- Lack of sleep or reduced quality of sleep
But there's another cause that's actually THE root cause of all three causes listed above, making it the #1 cause that affects your immunity more than anything else:
Stress - mental or emotional stress
Stress can lead to an unhealthy diet, decreased levels of less physical movement and exercise. Stress can also cause less sleep or reduced quality of sleep.
Most Common Causes of Stress
Why do we usually get stressed out? What causes stress? I believe there are at least 4 reasons:
- Fear and uncertainty about your future
- Sudden and rapid change of your lifestyle and how you live
- Threats to your health and wellbeing
- Bad and negative news in the media and online
This is exactly what most of us are experiencing today due to this COVID-19 situation around the world.
So, the real question is how do you stay calm, grounded, centered, and energized while at the same time aware of what's happening around you?
I know, I know...staying calm, grounded, and optimistic in these times can be much easier said than done for many.
But there's a solution...
As you know, stress, just like everything else, is just an energy. Fear is an energy. You are energy. I am energy. This article is energy. Everyone and everything is energy. You know this. You feel this.
That's why it's crucially important, more than ever, for you to not only safeguard your energy, but to actually recharge it, refuel it, rejuvenate it, every single day.
Recharging and protecting your energy is actually the first domino that triggers a positive domino effect:
Protect & Recharge your Energy > Stay Calmer and Centered > No (or less) Stress > Healthy Lifestyle & Habits > Stronger Immune System > Supreme Health & Wellness
Alternatives to Screen Time
For many of us, over the last 2 weeks, we've spent far more time in front of our screens than we normally would. And for parents, that may mean that your kids have been sitting in front of the tv, on their phones, or playing video games for 5 - 8 hours per day. If you're looking for ways to get your kids to put down their electronics and spend a bit more time doing other activities, we've found 12 healthier alternatives for you to try!
Check out these healthier alternatives, and let us know which ones you're trying with your family!
The Core 4 Stretch
Embrace flexibility: mentally and physically. Undoubtedly, this will be a time where your schedule changes. We can try to use this time to begin focusing on a few important habits that we never felt we had the time for when office work dominated our days.
The Core 4 Stretch series is a term used in the Fascial Stretch Therapy practice that focuses on lengthening 4 major muscle groups that contribute to hip tension. Try to explore this movement on the floor at least once a day on both sides for your hip and back health.
Hydration is Key
Remember to drink at least 2L of filtered water daily to keep your mouth and mucous membranes moist, and to assist the skin in transitioning from winter to summer. Proper hydration also supports gut health by improving the quality of bowel movements - an important way our bodies eliminate waste.
For questions about this and other naturopathic health solutions, feel free to connect with Dr. Cugliari today.
Safe Grocery Shopping
We know you're being more cautious and practicing social distancing, but have you adjusted your grocery shopping to incorporate the suggested precautions? Dr. Jeff VanWingen outlines the steps you should be taking to ensure you're staying safe while handling your groceries and takeout.
When you're in the grocery store:
- Wipe down the cart
- Commit to what you will buy before picking it up
- Don't shop if you have respiratory symptoms or have been exposed to COVID-19
- Plan what you will buy for 2 weeks of groceries
Try not to bring groceries into your house unless you absolutely need them (if you can, leave them in the garage and on the porch for 3 days).
If you must bring them in, utilize these modified sterile tips:
- Sanitize your workspace
- Wipe down all plastics
- Get rid of unnecessary/external packaging
- Move items to alternative storage containers
- Spray down hearty/thick packaging
- Soak and wash each piece of fruit for at least 20 seconds in soapy water; rinse them off to get rid of the soap
Watch Dr. VanWingen's video here to be sure you're handling your groceries correctly.
Have a topic you want us to discuss in these weekly Healthy View blogs? Email us!