World Health Day: Building a Healthier world for all
The COVID-19 pandemic that struck the world in late 2019-early 2020 brought to the fore the glaring disparity and inequality in the world. Not only did it affect people with pre-existing conditions like high blood pressure, kidney ailments, lung and heart troubles more than healthy individuals, it also affected economically weaker sections of the society greatly. World Health Day 2021 theme– Building a fairer, healthier world, highlights this ‘unequal world’ that we live in. As the world and our country are still grappling with newer strains and mutations of this novel coronavirus, we can take steps to lead a healthy, active life to strengthen our immunity.
Living a Healthy Life in COVID-19 Times
Patients with high blood pressure or hypertension have been considered to be a high-risk group for COVID-19 as per data analyzed from countries like China and the USA. It has been observed that 30-50% of patients hospitalized due to covid-19 had high blood pressure as a pre-existing condition.
While it is important that everyone should take special care to stay indoors, maintain social distancing and practice hygiene measures, people with high blood pressure and other conditions need to be extra careful and stay healthy.
To lead a healthy lifestyle while staying indoors, we need to focus on different aspects that include- taking the basic precautions such as wearing a mask etc., taking part in hygienic practices, maintaining a balanced diet, taking timely medications for high blood pressure and other pre-existing conditions and maintaining an active lifestyle.
Here are some ways to stay healthy while staying indoors!
Safety and Hygiene Measures
Washing your hands for 20 seconds with water and soap or using a hand sanitizer is recommended to keep the virus at bay.
The stress levels, anxiety, and changed lifestyle can take a toll on your mental health and cause a rise in your blood pressure. Adopting an active lifestyle by choosing an activity of your choice like yoga, floor exercises, walking, running, and others can help you stay fit, manage the stress, strengthen immunity and keep your parameters like blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol within normal limits.
Follow a Healthy Diet- DASH
Along with maintaining an active lifestyle, patients with high blood pressure should not just eat a healthy, nutritious diet but should also try and follow the DASH diet. This includes:
- Limiting your caloric intake.
- Adding a serving of fruits and vegetables to your lunch and dinner.
- Adding a serving of fruits to your snacks.
- Limiting your meat consumption.
- Using fat-free or low-fat condiments and dressings for your salads.
- Eating foods with lower sodium content.
Monitor Your Blood Pressure Levels
Even while being indoors, continue to monitor your vitals and other parameters, especially your blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, make sure you have enough stock of your medications to manage your condition. Get your routine doctor checkups virtually to avoid unnecessary exposure to the disease.
It is important that men and women who suffer from high blood pressure must take their health seriously, especially due to the high risk that they face from COVID-19 disease.
This World Health Day, WHO aimed to spread awareness about how we, the people, can help reduce the existing inequality by making healthcare accessible to all, no matter where they are or what they do. While the inequality seems unfair, we can try and build a fairer, healthier world where everyone is entitled to the same healthcare facilities, drugs, and infrastructure.
Note of Caution: This article is for information purpose only. Always consult your doctor in case of any blood pressure or other health-related problems.