To say that COVID-19 had an impact on the way we live our lives all around the world would be an understatement. From altering our daily routines to interacting with others to viewing our own vulnerability and mortality, we made dramatic, abrupt life changes. And we owe it to ourselves to recognize the lengths we’ve taken to make it all work.
All these changes upended other aspects of our overall well-being, including our mental health, physical health, eating habits and even financial situation. By now, we have all learned to adapt. Whether it has been for the best or not, we understand the playing field better and work toward thriving again.
It’s no surprise that the pandemic triggered a wave of emotions, and it’s not just you, or me. Social isolation, as well as the common daily stress, had all of us feeling a little off. A study conducted by Ipsos, surveyed 1,000 American adults (18 years old and older), and this is what was expressed by these respondents:
- 41% felt overwhelmed
- 33% felt stressed
- 30% felt anxious
- 24% felt lonely
- 24% felt depressed
We all heard on the news that the only people who didn’t come to a stop during the pandemic were our healthcare professionals, who should rightfully be praised as heroes. And although healthcare didn’t stop, many people skipped out on their yearly check-ins with their physicians, and most shockingly, even avoided serious visits.
This is because many felt either unsafe visiting the doctor’s office or questioned the importance, speculating that others were more in need of medical attention. Needless to say, this became alarming to many physicians because patients were skipping a preventive appointment that could detect early signs of disease, allowing for diagnosis and treatments to be considered. Some people even kept children from routine immunizations.
All the adaptations made to make sure patients were seen were not enough to bring those who were extremely afraid of exposure out of their homes and into the clinics. Thankfully, now that time has gone, and people have adapted. They feel safer. Ready to see their physicians more regularly again.
Healthy Lifestyle and Eating Habits
Interestingly enough, while people might have avoided the doctor’s office, they took matters into their own hands to improve their health through exercise and diet, making significant lifestyle changes. Sort of a “the best defense is a good offense” approach to taking care of themselves. And this is where it gets exciting! As a nutritionist, I couldn’t be happier with this wave of enthusiasm to become better versions of ourselves.
People started looking for ways to prepare their bodies from these biological bad guys that can decide to knock on our door at any time. This included no less than:
- At home exercise routines
- Improved sleep habits
- Spending more time in nature
- Eating healthier, more wholesome foods and having more consciousness when it comes to food choices
- Meditation; taking a look at your inner self
You might have also seen a lot of movement around gut health, for good reasons, too. Maybe you’ve heard me say this before but, 70-80% of your immune cells are located in your gut, which means that taking care of your gut health has always been crucial for your overall health.
Think of a small room, where you can only fit a limited amount of people for a party — the more of the good people you let in, the less room for the not so good ones, right? In a way, that’s the same with your gut. The more good bacteria you have, the less room for the bad bacteria to enter and potentially cause inflammation.
Now you might ask, how can I have more good bacteria then? Well, good bacteria can be a picky eater, but we do know that they prefer prebiotic fiber. And when you feed your good bacteria with fiber, it’ll thrive, keeping illness and inflammation at bay. Lucky for you, we came around just in time to bring a smile your gut. vibi+® has 8 grams of prebiotic fiber (that’s right, the one the good guys like) in a delicious ready-to-go bottle you can take with you anywhere.
It’s been a long process, and now it is time to sit down with yourself and reflect how these changes benefit you. If you took this pandemic as an opportunity to experiment new things, you can now choose to continue those things that made a positive impact in your daily life. Now you can make healthy decisions with intentionality.
Alzueta E, Perrin P, Baker FC, Caffarra S, Ramos-Usuga D, Yuksel D, Arango-Lasprilla JC. How the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives: A study of psychological correlates across 59 countries. J Clin Psychol. 2021 Mar;77(3):556-570. doi: 10.1002/jclp.23082. Epub 2020 Oct 31. PMID: 33128795.
Patricia M. Greenfield, Genavee Brown, Han Du,Shifts in ecology, behavior, values, and relationships during the coronavirus pandemic: Survival threat, subsistence activities, conservation of resources, and interdependent families,Current Research in Ecological and Social Psychology,Volume 2,2021,100017,ISSN 2666-6227,