After 20 years of caring for families at Pueblo Community Health Center, Dr. Rona Knudsen embraces her role as InnovAge PACE’s Center Medical Director, helping vulnerable older adults in the community. <br />
Working for Wellness
August 27, 2020
Be sure your diet includes a variety of foods that can help promote a strong immune system. This includes foods packed with vitamins C, B6, and E - chicken, salmon, nuts, and assorted fruits and vegetables.
Any kind of movement is beneficial to both mental and physical health. During physical distancing and the closing of fitness gyms and facilities, staying active can be a challenge. Try making small adjustments that add more movement throughout the day such as jogging in place, walking the steps at home, or try an online fitness class or series.
Getting a full night's rest is crucial to maintaining a healthy immune system. Research shows people who sleep seven to eight hours a night are less susceptible to illness. If illness does occur, sleep is beneficial to recovery. To help get to sleep at a decent time, try getting ready for bed half an hour earlier than normal bedtime. Be sure you tune out and turn off devices like televisions, tablets, and mobile phones. Use this time to relax, which in turns supports a sounder night's sleep.
Stress affects everyone and can weaken the immune system. Breathing techniques can help take one out of the 'fight or flight' mode and reduce stress levels.
- Take a few normal breaths to observe how that feels.
- Inhale deeply through your nose, drawing air down into your abdomen.
- As you inhale, keep your chest still and let your lower belly fully expand. (Try putting a hand on your abdomen, just below your navel - you should feel your hand rise about an inch.)
- Exhale slowly through your mouth or nose. (If your hand is on your abdomen, you should feel it fall by about an inch.)
- Repeat several times.