Stay Physically Healthy During Quarantine

Stay Physically Healthy During Quarantine

April 08, 2020

Warning: This article is intended for people in quarantine without any symptoms or diagnosis of acute respiratory illness. It should not replace medical guidance in case of any health condition.

WHO recommends 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity per week, or a combination of both. These recommendations can still be achieved even at home, with no special equipment and with limited space. The following are some tips on how to stay active and reduce sedentary behavior while at home in self-quarantine:

Take short active breaks during the day. Short bouts of physical activity add up to the weekly recommendations. You may use the suggested exercises below as inspiration to be active every day. Dancing, playing with children, and performing domestic chores such as cleaning and gardening are other means to stay active at home.

Follow an online exercise class. Take advantage of the wealth of online exercise classes. Many of these are free and can be found on YouTube. If you have no experience performing these exercises, be cautious and aware of your own limitations.

Stand up. Reduce your sedentary time by standing up whenever possible. Ideally, aim to interrupt sitting and reclining time every 30 minutes. Consider setting up a standing desk by using a high table or stacking a pile of books or other materials, to continue working while standing. During sedentary leisure time prioritize cognitively stimulating activities, such as reading, board games, and puzzles.

For optimal health, it is also important to remember to eat healthily and stay hydrated. WHO recommends drinking water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages. Limit or avoid alcoholic beverages for adults and strictly avoid these in young people, and pregnant and breastfeeding women, or for other health reasons. Ensure plenty of fruits and vegetables, and limit the intake of salt, sugar and fat. Prefer whole grains rather than refined foods. For more guidance on how to eat healthily, please see the WHO fact sheet on healthy diet.

Leave a comment