The Influence of Diet and Exercise for our Mental health and Well being, A Closer Look
“Eat well and exercise”, this is what we normally read when we research ways to stay healthy, both physically, mentally and emotionally. But how true is this claim? Could it really be true that the brain can achieve a healthy mental state through diet and exercise? Let’s try to review how diet and exercise are important for our Mental health? Living a healthy way of life, or a lifestyle can promote positive adaptation to modulate our brain’s function.
How Isolation due to COVID-19 impact on diet and exercise for Mental health?
As we go through the isolation that the current pandemic (COVID-19) has brought upon us. The lockdown, the loss of jobs, the isolation and the lack of human touch and interaction are concerns. We are forced to isolate more and more. Some handle isolation a lot better than others. It’s totally alright to feel like we need to reach out for help when isolation is just way too much to bear. Online mental health support is available and upon search, there are quite a few who offer this type of service.
Lifestyle modification, diet and exercise online searches have grown increasingly popular as months go by wherein people’s lives are abruptly altered. Due to the changes brought by a pandemic the majority of us some form of isolation or the other. However, for some, staying home has brought about struggles on how to stay healthy. Mainly for those who are habitual to running or riding their bikes, walking with their dogs for a short while of calmness, peace and a breath of fresh air. Some are forced to exercise at home and some have just totally lost their will to exercise. These people who have no proper diet and exercise may have gained unwanted weight which may affect one’s self-esteem or self-confidence.
Diet and Exercise for our mental health during Isolation
According to research and studies, regular good diet and exercise may have significant positive effects. It can affect a person’s mental health and well-being. Besides, it may help in handling episodes of depression, anxiousness, lower levels of stress. Also, it may improve memory, promotes better sleeping patterns and improve a person’s mood altogether. Take one’s mood, for example, psychologists may say group exercises force social interaction and provide a sense of purpose and goals. It can then be said to help self-esteem and overall outlook.
However, too much of anything is not healthy, either. If we diet and exercise too much, it may lead to injuries and exhaustion. Finding a happy middle is the key to promoting good mental health whilst keeping in shape and feeling good and better about ourselves.
Workout Regime: Exercising at Home
Just to make it clear, our bedrooms, are not the best spaces to exercise. Sometimes it is all that we have. When it comes to creating a conducive environment for a good fitness regimen, there are a lot of distracting factors. For example children, pets, television and the bed that invites us to just lay and roll all day. Coming up with a good home workout is half the battle. Along with a good diet, here are a few steps exercise steps that you can practice at home.
1) Core Home Workout Regimen:
- Sit-ups – aim for 10 to begin and work your way up to more repetitions. Note that tucking your feet under a couch, chair or table may decrease the stress needed to lift yourself up. Note any unnecessary strain or aches. Listen to your body so as not harm yourself.
- Crunches – If sit-ups are just too tough for you, go for crunches. Aim for three sets.
- Bicycles – Lie flat on your back with your feet up in the air, knees bent. Place your two hands behind the nape of your neck and rest. Begin pumping your legs alternatively in the air for a minute, rest and then do another minute. Aim to do this for a couple of minutes for a vigorous cardio and core muscle workout.
- Planks – This may be a great toning technique. Hands down, rest elbows and toes firmly against the floor and hold your back, whole body and legs straight. Hold this position for a minute if you can.
2) Cardio Home Workout Moves:
- Jumping Jacks – This will definitely get your heart rate pumping.
- Skipping – Can form part of a leg workout and help you to break a sweat.
3) Lower Body Home Workout Routine:
- Squats – Make sure your back is straight and then drop yourself to a squatting position and repeat. Watch your technique and notices any aches or pains which could be a sign to stop.
- High Knees – Jog in place for 10 minutes but with your knees thrown up in the air as high as you can.
4) Upper Body Home Routine:
- Push-ups – If you are a beginner, it is totally acceptable to bear weight on your knees as opposed to your toes while you have your hands flat on the floor while you push yourself up. This tones the chest, arms and the triceps.
- Dips – Sit on a sturdy chair and then place the palm of your hands at the edge of the seat. Push your buttocks out until it is suspended in the air and then bend elbows slightly as you drop your hips towards the floor.
In closing, there are plenty of ways to handle isolation. In the end, it is for us to decide if we wish to seek help so that we can feel better. Talking to experts who specialises in the field of psychology, counselling or psychiatry. If medication is required, your doctor can advise, it can truly help ease anxiety and depression. Handling Isolation well can mean getting diet and exercise right. We all acknowledge the challenges. Seek professional help if necessary.
Staying at home may be necessary due to the COVID19 pandemic. However, it should not be a hindrance for any of us who wish to get help. There are bulk-billed online telehealth services offered and all we have to do is to reach out for help. If isolation is just way too much to bear, then do not bear it alone. Online mental health support is available and upon search, there are quite a few who offer this type of service.