2021 hasn’t quite had the start we had all hoped for, but don’t let that put a dampener on your plans or resolutions. The pandemic is causing a lot of restrictions for many and as a result it can be easy to fall into bad habits. Your mental and physical health may need a bit of extra support during these challenging times.
It’s a difficult time for many people as changes to routines can trigger anxiety. It’s really important to recognise what you are finding difficult and understanding how you feel about them is crucial when it comes to improving mental health.
Some may find talking to others helps, in which case, stay in touch with family and friends as much as possible. Modern technology means we can still see our loved ones even though we cannot physically be together. It’s so easy to communicate and stay in touch. Another great method to try is writing. Writing things down often helps people to find clarity and enables them to feel in control giving perspective over a given situation.
Hydration is often overlooked but it is an essential part of staying healthy and has many great benefits. Drinking more fluids prevents you from feeling both physically and emotionally tired. If you exercise a lot, you definitely need to drink more. Being dehydrated makes physical and mental activities much more difficult.
Everyone should be drinking around 2 litres of water everyday and making such a small change can greatly improve your health. If you wait until you start to feel thirsty, then you are likely to already be dehydrated.
If drinking tap water is not for you, invest in a Brita Filter. It vastly improves the taste of the water and the jugs have been designed to fit in with most kitchens, meaning you always have cold, freshly filtered water at hand. We have a great choice of styles and sizes available to choose from and each has a digital display to remind you when to change your filter in order to achieve the best results.
If you have been working from home, then you may have fallen into the bad habit of raiding the kitchen cupboards at the first signs of hunger and potentially reaching for comforting yet problematic snacks throughout the day. Try to turn to fresh ingredients such as fruit or vegetables. It’s ok to have a few treats along the way, but essentially it’s about balance.
Yoghurt is a great choice especially if it’s fresh and homemade. We love Easiyo. Their fantastic products allow you to make your own delicious tasting yoghurt at home. It’s an extremely simple, easy follow to process and the choice of styles and flavours available means you’ll never get bored. You can switch ingredients, such as cream, in recipes for yoghurt making meals a little bit healthier. Yoghurt is also great for children to dunk fresh fruit into for snack times and it can also be added to cereal for breakfast or even supper.
Taking regular exercise is not only great for your physical health but your mental wellbeing too. We all lead such busy lives and it can be tricky trying to squeeze in a high impact workout or a run into your tight schedule. Don’t worry, even just walking for 15 to 20 minutes each day is enough to get those endorphins pumping and give you a small boost of energy that will make you feel so much better. What’s more fresh air and Vitamin D from the sun (when it makes an appearance) all contributes to a healthy lifestyle.
Having a meal plan, especially with a family to feed can be really helpful with busy routines. Many meals can be prepared ahead of time ready to reheat or pop in the oven at mealtimes. Batch cooking is a great way to save time also, double your ingredients and freeze half for a quick meal the following week.
Another simple way to get ahead is to use a slow cooker or even a soup maker. With either of these options, you can throw all of your fresh ingredients in and the appliance does it all for you. Slow Cookers can be loaded up, switched on left to do all the hard work throughout the day, providing a ready to eat dish by dinnertime. They are great for cooking large pots of stew, casseroles and even joints of meat. There are many one-pot recipes out there to discover and this provides a simple way to include your 5 a day. Soup Makers offer a much quicker solution, once you have prepared your ingredients the machine will have it all cooked and ready to eat in 20 to 30 minutes.
We hope that these ideas will introduce you to some simple changes that can be made to enable you to boost your mental health and look after yourself and your family. Kickstart your New Year, stay healthy and stay safe.