April 24, 2020

COVID 19: 4 EASY WAYS TO KEEP DEPRESSION AWAY THIS SEASON

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What are you doing to keep your body, heart and mind healthy this period? With a state of lockdown declared in most parts of the world, people are still adjusting to living in a new way due to the coronavirus pandemic that has ravaged the health systems and economies of the world.

As the lockdown due to COVID-19 persists in most countries, and an increasing number of people live in isolation, some of the disturbing questions on everyone’s mind will likely include: ‘when will this be over?’; ‘how do I manage stress, anxiety and depression starring me?’ We may not have an immediate answer but as we continue to adhere strictly to measures implemented by the government in order to remain safe and well, here are four easy ways to stay on top of your health and mental well-being

Exercise Daily: The lockdown has not only shut down the activities of businesses and people, it has led to people living a sedentary lifestyle also. This state of physical inactivity comes with obvious health risks such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and heart diseases. The more weight we gain as a result of eating and sleeping without any form of activity, the harder our heart must work.

The heart is a muscle, and the less it is worked, the weaker it becomes. Being in a state of inactivity for a long period of time impacts negatively on our body especially our joints, heart and mind.  Regular physical exercise is one of the pillars of healthy living. It protects against a variety of non-communicable diseases, improves cardiovascular health and helps control body weight, anxiety and depression. Daily exercise boosts our mood.



Eat healthily and Supplement your food: Recent research has focused on the role of nutritional supplementation in the management of depression. The production of neurotransmitters needs adequate amounts of nutrients. Among these nutrients are amino acids (tryptophan, tyrosine, and glutamine), minerals (zinc, copper, iron, magnesium), and B vitamins (B6, B12, folic acid). They are found in whole grains (zinc, copper, magnesium), eggs, cheese, yogurt (tyrosine, glutamine, zinc, magnesium), beans, vegetables, especially green leaf ones, broccoli, cabbage, spinach, corn, fish, poultry, etc.

Amino acids are molecules the body needs to produce the neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine (chemicals responsible for mood regulation. i.e feel good chemicals). These neurotransmitters are responsible for modulation of moods and are therefore essential in the management of depression. ASTYMIN is specially formulated with the relevant essential amino acids such as tryptophan, phenylalanine and methionine.

Keep in touch with family and friends: The emotional support provided by keeping in touch with family and friends enhances our psychological well-being because of the encouragement and relieve from such interactions. Our social network at a time as this gives a greater meaning to life. It also reduces risks of dementia, depression, and anxiety.

Our minds detest being kept at bay – being kept in isolation. This feeling is worse in older people. As it is in the case of the lockdown due coronavirus pandemic, we all do feel the distasteful experience of being lonely. Let us, therefore, stay in touch with one another so that while you may be alone, you are not on your own.

Learn new skills: The health benefits of learning something new extend much further than we may think. Learning a new skill can profit our overall health. It is a way of having fun; it fights boredom and depression. Learning something new keeps our interest level high.  It changes our brain chemistry, which ultimately increases the speed at which we learn. It fuels creativity, fights off dementia and helps us adapt to change more rapidly.

Unlike the monotonous activities like watching TV or scrolling on our phones, we can decide to make a list of the new skills we want to learn this period. We can begin to watch videos online to learn these skills. Be it from sports like table tennis, swimming and games to cooking, baking, sewing, YouTube videos will help in learning new skills.

We must choose to get moving. Try as much as you can to avoid the harmful effects of a sedentary lifestyle and take control of your health and mind in this lockdown that we have all found ourselves!

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