As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, our pantries, and our routines, it's important to be realistic and practice self-love when it comes to our diet. To do the best you can on the budget you have usually means considering ingredients and quality as well as diet type.
I recommend that my patients drink half of their body weight in ounces of water per day. For example, if you weigh 100 lbs., drink 50 oz. of water every day. You can substitute herbal tea or carbonated mineral water for some of it, but sugar, artificial sweetener, caffeine, and alcoholic beverages do not count toward your oz. per day goal. Adequate water can actually affect kidney function, and healthy kidneys can help decrease bloating.
Sometimes my patients complain of using the restroom too frequently and they resist the water conversation. Typically though, what people find is that frequency of urination doesn't necessarily increase, although volume does.
When people ask me for a by-the-book fad diet recommendation I usually say to try The Whole 30. The basic premise of this diet is to eat only whole foods for 30 days. It's a great way to kick nasty processed food habits and try basic healthy eating. After 30 days many people don't go back to eating junk food regularly, but it's an individual choice to stick to healthy eating or not.
Avoiding processed foods or foods with long ingredient lists can often make people feel so much better that they don't enjoy going back. Many report improvements in gas and bloating, inflammation and pain, skin, weight, mood, and more.
If someone is not ready for a diet revamp, I just recommend eating more vegetables - if possible with every meal. Digesting vegetables can actually help condition your intestines to be a favorable place for healthy gut bacteria to live. I also advise my patients to include some probiotic and pre-boitic foods. In addition try sauerkraut, kimchee, yogurt, and cultured foods to help replenish your healthy gut flora.
"The COVID 19 Pounds"
It's important to have connection and relationship with your body, and to practice self-care. Hands down that's the best way to have a healthy (and good looking) body. If you need rest, get sleep. If you're stressed out, manage that.
Stress hormones can make it easier to gain weight and harder to loose it. Pushing your body too hard while working out, or restricting calories to severely can just cause your body to panic and keep the weight on. If you're having trouble with as one of my patients called it, "The COVID 19 pounds," make sure to check in with a licensed provider about how to best care for your body. Don't ever hate it or punish it, you need to build a relationship with your body. That's just part of loving yourself and cultivating a healthy lifestyle.