While spending more time inside has been identified as one of the most effective ways to prevent COVID-19, it may also pose some health risks. One, in particular, is its potential effect on bone health.
One of the ways to come out of all this madness with the best possible health is to maximize your time in self-isolation. Too much time sitting, making poor food choices, and being inactive can lead to joint pain, weak bones, and more.
The last thing you want to experience during these troubling times is the added stresses of pain and immobility or an increased risk of a fall or potential bone fracture.
To keep your bones healthy and your body pain-free, remembering a few things is essential over the coming weeks and months.
First, dedicate time for activity each day. Getting up to walk around your home, at least once per hour, for about 5–10 minutes can help. Doing more is even better.
A way to boost activity is to take on some projects around the home like redecorating, gardening, or cleaning out clutter.
Adding some form of resistance exercise to your day (lifting) can also help protect bones.
Next, make sure the majority of the foods you’re eating are healthful. Stocking the freezer and pantry with items rich in protein, calcium, fiber, magnesium, and antioxidants can all help to boost immunity, fight inflammation, limit pain, and promote strong bones.
Foods to keep on hand include: plain Greek yogurt, frozen berries (or fresh, then frozen), frozen cruciferous and leafy greens (or fresh and frozen), nuts, nut butter, eggs, lentils, oats, and canned tuna/salmon.
Each of these foods possesses nutrients that can help fight inflammation to control joint pain and help build and maintain strong healthy bone.
Ensuring you’re eating enough is also important. Although your appetite might be down, nutritional requirements don’t change. Getting adequate nutrition keeps your body replenished and energized.
Utilizing your at-home time to practice healthy lifestyle habits can help prevent bone loss and joint pain. Be smart in your approach to self-isolation and remember that reducing the risk of COVID-19 could increase the risk for other ailments if you’re not careful.