Since the outbreak of Coronavirus, our lifestyle completely changed. We are restricted to home for isolation to maintain social distance to stop the spread. It is a challenging time for everyone because we are forced to change our “habits.” We don’t go to work instead work at home, kids are home schooling, easy stop for dinner restaurants are closed, and no gym is open. Are anyone expected this to happen? Not really. We certainly seem to be adapting an unfavorable circumstance right now because it is a beginning stage of stress, “flight or fight”. When it becomes chronic stress, the real problems start physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. Also, our bodies are made up from what we eat. The foods that we eat manifests in the future after the body is used up own defense mechanism.
We really should pay precaution what we eat during the pandemic period by adding smart consideration and a little restriction to own behaviors in order to improve our immune system, physical wellness, and maintenance of hormone balances.
1. Implement a food tracking app to review what and how much you eat.
It is a good way to build a habit of counting calories. Calories in should be 10 to 20% above the amount of calorie you burn due to the thermodynamics calorie expenditure while digesting foods, so that you can maintain your body weight. There is easy way to measure macronutrients by using your hand.
· Protein: a serving of protein is about equal to a size of the palm. Men-24g, Women-22g
· Carbohydrates: a serving of vegetable and fruit is about equal to a size of the fist. Men-5g, Women-5g
· Carbohydrates: a serving of starchy carbs is about equal to a size of the cupped hand, Men-25g, Women-22g
· Fats: a serving of fats is about equal to a size of the thumb. Men-9g, Women-8g
2. Avoid processed foods
Some people may not have access to fresh produces and horded with ultra-processed foods. Did you notice that you can’t stop eating potato chips once you start eating? The foods highly processed for food marketing purposes are palatable, shorter time to chew, and triggering to eat or drink more. Moreover, some processed foods contain hidden ingredients such trans-fat, artificial coloring, HFCS, artificial sugars which has at least 61 different names. Also, overloading added sugar is recognized as a risk factor of metabolic diseases and heart diseases.
· Restriction of added sugar: the calories from added sugar should be less than 10 percent of your total calorie consumed. Men<38g, Women<25g
3. Alkaline diets
Stress can cause our body acidic which causes weight gain, inflammation in the joints and muscles, and increment of blood vessel viscosity. Specially, we prefer to strengthen our immune system, maintain healthy lean mass and body weight, and increase the absorption of micronutrients from the limited supplies of foods.
Alkaline dieting is more focused on plan based food sources helps it focuses more on minimally processed foods (baking, broiling, steaming, grilling) and vegetable, whole grain foods, and fruit.
An alkaline diet — also known as the alkaline ash diet, alkaline acid diet, acid ash diet, acid alkaline diet and even sometimes the pH diet — is one that helps balance the blood pH level of the fluids in your body, including your blood and urine. Your pH is partially determined by the mineral density of the foods you eat. All living organisms and life forms on earth depend on maintaining appropriate pH levels, and it is often said that disease and disorder cannot take root in a body that has a balanced ph.
The principles of the acid ash hypothesis help make up the tenets of the alkaline diet. “The acid-ash hypothesis posits that protein and grain foods, with a low potassium intake, produce a diet acid load, net acid excretion, increased urine calcium, and release of calcium from the skeleton, leading to osteoporosis.” The alkaline diet aims to prevent this from happening by carefully taking food pH levels into consideration in an attempt to limit dietary acid intake.
Although some experts might not totally agree with this statement, nearly all agree that human life requires a very tightly controlled pH level of the blood of about 7.365–7.4. Your pH can range between 7.35 to 7.45 depending on the time of day, your diet, what you last ate and when you last went to the bathroom. If you develop electrolyte imbalances and frequently consume too many acidic foods — aka acid ash foods — your body’s changing pH level can result in increased “acidosis.”
There are so many known health benefits of alkaline diets;
1) Protects bone density and muscle mass
An alkaline diet can support bone health by balancing the ratio of minerals that are important for building bones and maintaining lean muscle mass, including calcium, magnesium and phosphate. The diet may also help improve production of growth hormones and vitamin D absorption, which further protects bones in addition to mitigating many other chronic diseases.
2) Lower chronic pain and inflammation
One of the anti-aging effects of an alkaline diet is that it decreases inflammation and causes an increase in growth hormone production.
3) Boosts Vitamin Absorption and Prevents Magnesium Deficiency
An increase in magnesium is required for the function of hundreds of enzyme systems and bodily processes. Many people are deficient in magnesium and as a result experience heart complications, muscle pains, headaches, sleep troubles and anxiety.
Available magnesium is also required to activate vitamin D and prevent vitamin D, which is important for overall immune and endocrine functioning.
4) Helps Improve Immune Function and Cancer Protection
When cells lack enough minerals to properly dispose of waste or oxygenate the body fully, the whole body suffers. Vitamin absorption is compromised by mineral loss, while toxins and pathogens accumulate in the body and weaken the immune system. Immune system booster micronutrients are Zinc, Selenium, Iron, Calcium, Folic Acid, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and vitamin E.
Best Alkaline Foods
Although you don’t have to be strict vegetarian to eat a high alkaline diet, the diet is mostly plant-based. Here is a list of foods to emphasize most:
· Fresh fruits and vegetables promote alkalinity the most. Which are the best choices; Some of the top picks include: mushrooms, citrus, dates, raisins, spinach, grapefruit, tomatoes, avocado, summer black radish, alfalfa grass, barley grass, cucumber, kale, jicama, wheat grass, broccoli, oregano, garlic, ginger, green beans, endive, cabbage, celery, red beet, watermelon, figs and ripe bananas.
· All raw foods: Ideally try to consume a good portion of your produce raw. Uncooked fruits and vegetables are said to be biogenic or “life-giving.” Cooking foods depletes alkalizing minerals. Increase your intake of raw foods, and try juicing or lightly steaming fruits and vegetables.
· Plan proteins: Almonds, navy beans, lima beans and most other beans are good choices.
· Alkaline water.
· Green drinks: Drinks made from green vegetables and grasses in powder form are loaded with alkaline-forming foods and chlorophyll which is structurally similar to our own blood and helps alkalize the blood.
· Other foods to eat on an alkaline diet include sprouts, wheatgrass, kamut, fermented soy like natto or tempeh, and seeds.