What do I need to do to become healthy?

The priorities that many of us have had a chance to think about in lockdown are the simple things. The simple things, such as eating whole, unprocessed food, which is very hard to do in this day and age. But it is clear that high sugar intake damages cells. So let’s get back to basics and have that real unprocessed food.

Are we prioritising to spend time in the ‘green and blue’ areas? Are we going out for walks, walking by the sea or a lake? Are we getting out into the greenery, and listening to the birds, getting that important sunlight? Since the lockdown, I’ve seen so many people that live on my street out walking, and I think that’s great. It’s a great change in priority.

Sleep is something that a lot of us – and I’m putting my own hand up here – do not prioritise. Can we create opportunities for eight hours of good sleep per night?

Are we socially connecting? Certainly, our social connections have changed over the last little while, and our priorities have changed.

I guess what I’m saying here is, let’s be proactive. Let’s use this opportunity to really think about what the priorities are around our health. And going into this uncertain future, be brave enough to think, ‘Am I really healthy and do I need to make change?’

For me personally, I’m currently doing a course in coaching and something that’s been really useful in working alongside clients to collaborate with them to reach their health goals, is working on what is positive and what is possible for them.

A powerful question for all of us to ask ourselves is, ‘What positive difference will better health make for me and my family?’. When I started with PreKure and preventative medicine, I thought I was really healthy, but I have learned over the last few years that, actually, it’s those simple things done well that can make me have better health and have a better quality of life.

Let’s be proactive.

I talked to my parents, who are in their mid-70s, about what their thoughts on COVID-19 were and how it was affecting them, and I was absolutely blown away by what they had to say:

“Our generation has not had a threat like this, apart from the Vietnam War. It makes us realise how other generations before us have felt, like the First World War when returning soldiers brought the Spanish Flu home. We feel threatened by the fact that we can’t do lots of normal day-to-day things. We feel restricted that we can’t see and help a very sick friend. We feel useless we can’t do anything about it. We miss our grandchildren. We worry for our family on the front line. We worry about other’s finances. For us, this is already how we live, financially. We are having to negotiate how we get on with each other. We must trust ourselves to make the right decisions. We know it’s important to be updated with the news in the morning and at night, but not to listen to it all day, as it does not help anyone mentally.

We talk about ‘what if…’.

We have a lot to feel positive about. We are fit, so we can continue to exercise without others. We, now in isolation, have more contact with extended family members and friends and realise this is how it should be. People that we see when walking, and have done so for a long time, now say ‘hello’. This feels good.

It is time to reflect on our values and to realise how important family and friends are. We know that health is the most important thing we have, and this virus, for us, has emphasised that. We know our life experiences hold us strong. We are lucky.”

And for me, that really embodies what is positive and what is possible.