As we are all navigating our way through the COVID 19 pandemic, I can only imagine the amount of fear and anxiety that has taken place. I would like to share some tips to help decrease some of your anxiety when it comes to food and meals.
Self Care Nourishment Plan
Whether you are following a meal on not, now is the time to practice flexibility and creativity with nourishment. Everytime we eat we are acting on self care by nourishing our brain and body. One way to do this is to create a “tentative” nourishment plan for the day by planning out some ideas of what you want to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you can even add your snacks. Depending on how you are feeling each day you can keep your snacks open for a spontaneous choice based on what you may want intuitively.
Practice Food Flexibility
Depending on on what is available to you at home or in the stores, you may not have the foods you like to eat on a regular basis. This means venturing out of your comfort zone to still nourish your body with the foods you have available to you. When doing this identify a coping skill to be used during each meal. Do
Nourishment Safety Net
This is one of those times where you have full permission to eat your safe foods without a planned food challenge. With heightened anxiety and stress, it will feel safe to nourish your body the best you can with the foods that feel good. The main goal is to eat your regular meals throughout the day and focus on your recovery during this time. If you are feeling ready and supported then please follow through with increasing dietary variety and incorporating some of those foods that may give little anxiety.
Basic Brain and Body Nourishment
Do your best to make sure you have some foods from different food groups, such as carbohydrates, protein, fats, dairy, fruits/vegetables. This is the time to buy foods from the various food groups to help you meet all your nutritional needs and in ways you may not have before, think frozen, dried, canned, or pre-flavored. Some alternative options that may be available are:
- Beans: if canned aren’t available, do they have dried?
- Pasta: do they have any fortified versions? Versions made out of other ingredients like lentils? Frozen versions?
- Other grains: rice, farro, quinoa, couscous, pre-made flavored versions
- Proteins: canned meats, frozen protein options (chicken patties or nuggets, frozen seafood, etc), beans, tofu, nuts, seeds, nut butters
- Fats: combo foods, tortilla chips, butter, cooking oil, hummus, nuts, seeds
- Fruits & Vegetables: frozen, or canned
- Applesauce or other fruit pouches
- 100% fruit or vegetables juice
- Combo foods: protein fortified pasta, protein smoothies or shakes, frozen entrees, etc