By DIANNE HARRISON
It can be hard to find a healthy routine during the uncertainty of a global pandemic, but it’s more important than ever to take good care of yourself and maintain good health habits.
Rather than focusing on specific goals, try to embrace a holistic approach to your well-being that takes all your needs into account. If you’re not sure how to get started, this guide from Village Portland can give you idea about how to build healthy habits for long-term wellness.
Focus on quality
When making changes to your eating habits, the number of diets, specialists, and resources within reach can be overwhelming. Keep it simple by focusing on food quality. The fresher your food is, the more nourishing it is— and the more likely you are to feel satisfied afterward.
By eating food that is local, seasonal, and organic, its quality is likely to be much better than food that was picked before ripening and had to travel thousands of miles to get to you. Shopping at your local food co-op is a great way to get started.
Another way to improve the quality of your food is to put more time into it— that is, carving out more space in your day for meal planning, preparation, and eating. Although many of us have jam-packed days, the effort to slow down and enjoy quality food will be well worth it. You’ll be less likely to rely on unhealthy convenience foods, and you may find that you enjoy mealtime much more.
If you live on the eastside of Portland, cooking classes for both kids and adults are a stone’s throw away.
Detox your life
A detox isn’t just for gut health. Think about ways you can reduce negativity in other areas of your life. Do you have any harmful habits, toxic relationships, or an unhealthy living environment? If it’s your social life that needs a detox, consider setting boundaries that protect your mental health. This doesn’t mean that you need to cut people out of your life if they’re down or grumpy, but it’s important to make your own well-being a priority. Try to ensure that your social life eases stress and makes you feel good.
If it’s your home that needs a detox, try bringing in positivity by decluttering, cleaning, and improving the air quality of your space. Good airflow is especially important during Pacific Northwest winters when moisture can contribute to mold and mildew in your home. The resulting allergens can affect both your health and your mood, so be sure to watch out for leaks, and consider using a dehumidifier if your home is damp.
Sweat with friends
In the era of COVID-19, staying socially connected is more important than ever before. Consider combining your exercise with socializing for a doubly-potent boost to your well-being. Although in-person fitness classes may still be unsafe or inaccessible, there are ways to exercise while also nurturing your sense of belonging.
Many Portland studios and gyms have adapted to offer socially distant workouts. Because these are interactive, they can be more fun than following a video on your own. Getting outdoors with a friend for a run or hike is another great way to stay fit and connected. Just be sure that you practice proper social distancing and respect any trail closures.
Although it may be a little more complicated to maintain healthy habits this year than in years past, it’s important to adjust your expectations and do what you can. A holistic approach that acknowledges the big picture can prevent you from getting frustrated by limitations and help you make progress. If you focus on eating quality food, detoxing negativity, and joining forces with friends to stay active, you’ll be on your way to greater health and happiness.
For more health and safety advice and all-things Portland, look no further than Village Portland.
As a former librarian, Diane noticed that a lot of people would come in looking for more information on various health and medical conditions whether it was for their own personal research or after the diagnosis of a family member or friend. This is what inspired her to begin her writings.