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Beating cabin fever: Focus on nutrition, exercise, enough sleep – Alton Telegraph

Posted: March 31, 2020 at 10:44 pm

Beating cabin fever: Focus on nutrition, exercise, enough sleep

ALTON Spring is right around the corner, and many have a bad case of cabin fever both mentally and physically but thats a trade off for possible exposure to novel coronavirus and a bad case of COVID-19 disease.

We know that many people experience stress and anxiety when there is a crisis, Centerstones Becky Stoll, vice president of the mental health and counseling facilitys Crisis and Disaster Management.

If you, or someone you know, are showing signs of stress or anxiety, there a few things you can do.

One way to reduce stress and anxiety is to limit how much time spent reading or watching news about the crisis.

This will give you more time to focus on keeping yourself healthy, which you can do by exercising, eating the right foods and getting enough sleep.

Stoll noted that everyone reacts to stressful situations in different ways. Some people might need to talk with a professional to help them cope.

And that is perfectly OK, she said.

At Centerstone, our clinicians are here to help anyone who may be experiencing stress, anxiety, depression or another mental health condition, and we will continue to provide these services during the current crisis.

And, just because youre staying home, it doesnt mean you cant stay active.

Exercise doesnt have to be at a gym, on equipment or lifting weights or treadmills, said OSF HealthCares Matt Janus, an exercise physiologist at OSF HealthCare systems Saint James-John W. Albrecht Medical Center in Pontiac.

Its just whatever gets your body moving, that you enjoy and can stick with.

The American Heart Association, for basic heart health, recommends 150 minutes of exercise during the course of one week. Often in winter months motivation to stay active wanes, but people are longing to again get active come spring. Janus explained that the 150 minutes of exercise can be broken down into small increments.

Really, if you are doing anything in the house that gets your body moving for ten minutes and gets your breathing up a little bit, your heart rate up, its going to help, he said.

So things, like, doing more activity intensive chores, such as vacuuming or sweeping or taking your stairs for a few minutes at a time, up and down all add up. It might seem silly, but it all goes toward the goal.

Janus also recommended keeping things simple because intense exercise isnt necessarily what is needed for which to strive. Even a living room dance party counts, he said. And there are plenty of virtual dance parties online, especially at Facebook. Many are live, in which participants can see each other for virtual social interaction, but a live party is optional. Those who tune in to social media can choose to simply hear the music to which to dance.

Even if youre just dancing with your kids for a half hour, that can give you just as much benefit as doing a ten minute high-intensity workout, Janus said.

It doesnt have to be all or nothing when it comes to exercise, he explained. Something is better than nothing. Whatever you can do, that you enjoy, to get your body moving is going to be the best for you.

Call OSF Saint Anthonys Medical Center at 618-465-2571 and ask to be connected to its Wellness Services to talk to a specialist who can help plan a path to wellness that fits individual needs. In line with mental health recommendations of keeping healthy eating habits, especially during stressful and anxious situations, OSF Saint Anthonys registered dietitians also can help individuals develop those habits. Visit http://www.osfhealthcare.org for more information.

Call Centerstone, 2615 Edwards St., Alton, at 618-462-2331 or visit http://www.centerstone.org for more information.

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Beating cabin fever: Focus on nutrition, exercise, enough sleep - Alton Telegraph

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