Quarantine Making You Crazy?

Quarantine Activities

Try and reduce long periods of time spent sitting, whether for work, studying, watching TV, reading, or using social media or playing games using screens. Reduce sitting for long periods by taking short 3-5 minute breaks every 20-30 minutes. Simply stand up and stretch or even better, take a walk around the house, up and down the stairs, or into the garden. By just moving around and stretching you can improve your health and wellbeing. For more ideas and illustrations of healthy stretches see here.

Set up a regular routine to be active every day, by planning a physical activity or exercise break either by yourself, by joining an online class, or by setting up a time to be active online with your friends or colleagues. Making a specific time to be active helps ensure you get your daily physical activity. Put the time in your diary, and it will help remind you. Stick with it, as this will help you build a regular routine, and help you adjust to new ways of working, study and family life under COVID-19 restrictions

Be active with your family and friends, connecting with others can help you and your family in the home and elsewhere spend time together and be active. Planning time to be active with your children with active games at home, walks in the parks, or cycling can be a way the whole family can relax, be together and be active and healthy whilst at home.

Set yourself and your family Be Active goals, by choosing a specific type of activity, time of day and/or number of minutes you will do every day. Get each family member to choose their own goal which sets a bit of a challenge but is realistic with help from family or friends and motivation. Record your progress on a weekly activity chart and, if you think it would help, reward yourself with something you value.



Fettuccine with Shrimp

Play with the art of cooking. You can substitute the Mediterranean
flavored dish in many different ways.

You’ll Need
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 pound shrimp medium uncooked peeled and vein removed
  • 4 large tomatoes seeded and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/3 cup black olives, sliced and pitted
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, minced
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound fettuccine, cooked
  • Romano cheese, grated
  • Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add shrimp, tomatoes, basil, olives, garlic and shallot.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cook until shrimp turn pink, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes.
  • Place pasta in serving bowl.
  • Pour sauce over and toss.
  • Sprinkle with Romano.
  • Serve immediately.
Play with Your Food
  • Try a different pasta
  • Use a different shellfish, seafood or chicken

Will Clower Articles

Greek Lamb and Orzo

 The flavors of the Mediterranean are quite delicious. This is an easy way to prepare lamb on a busy weeknight. Enjoy this main dish with a glass of red wine.

You’ll Need

  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 16 ounces canned stewed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 stalk celery, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • ½ cup orzo
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • Plain yogurt


  • Cook and stir ground lamb in 10-inch skillet until lamb is light brown; drain.
  • Stir in tomatoes, celery, orzo, salt and red pepper.
  • Heat to boiling; reduce heat.
  • Cover and simmer about 12 minutes, stirring frequently until tomato liquid is absorbed and orzo is tender.
  • Serve with yogurt.


Got The Quarantine Blues?

Man Running on Treadmill in HomeDo not exercise if you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Stay home and rest, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority.

If you are able to go for a walk or bicycle ride always practice physical distancing and wash your hands with water and soap before you leave, when you get to where you are going, and as soon as you get home.  If water and soap are not immediately available, use alcohol-based hand rub.

If you go to a park or public open space to walk, run or exercise always practice physical distancing and wash your hands with water and soap, before you leave, when you get to where you are going, and as soon as you get home.  If water and soap are not immediately available, use alcohol-based hand rub. Follow the directions of your local health authority in regards to any restrictions on the number of people with you and/or restrictions on the use of public outdoor play or exercise equipment.

If you are not regularly active start slowly and with low intensity activities, like walking and low impact exercises. Start with shorter amounts, like 5-10 minutes, and gradually build up to 30 minutes or more continuously over a few weeks. It is better and safer to be active for short periods more frequently than to try and be active for long periods when you are not used to it.

Choose the right activity so that you reduce the risk of injury and that you enjoy the activity. Choose the right intensity according to your health status and fitness level. You should be able to breath comfortably and hold a conversation while you do light- and moderate-intensity physical activity.

Source: WHO


10 Tips For Mindfulness Practices

In this highly stressful time, mindfulness should become a critical part of your day. Below are the top 10 tips to help sustain mindfulness.

  1. Boy meditating under the glass dome with viruses flying around. Create Daily routines. Your old routines have drastically changed, and you may get thrown off. Your activity, nutrition, and mindfulness could all suffer. This alone can create stress. So, if you have not already done so, set a special schedule for your quarantine. While you shelter in place, plan for times when you can be active, practice yoga, meditate, and shop for high quality meals. This will provide a mentally stabilizing structure for you to follow.
  2. In our normal lives, it can be difficult to develop mindfulness habits such as meditation. Work schedules and family obligations can make that tough to fit in. So now is a really good time to try morning meditations of at least 15 minutes. Doing so will help you understand the benefit of daily meditation, and it is especially important in these uncertain times.
  3. Keep in mind that if you are stressed about your job, the economy, your health, etc., those feelings can sneak up on you. You may not realize that these feelings are perfectly normal and coming from the completely unusual situation we find ourselves in today. Recognizing that you may have these feelings allows you to better deal with them when they do occur.
  4. Your daily schedule is normally driven by activities that are likely shut down through the month of April. School schedules, work schedules, and social activity schedules create the ordinary time pressures that you no longer have. Because of this, it can be disorienting if you stay up very late, eat very poorly, have irregular meals, and treat this time like a vacation. Go ahead and plan your meals, go to bed at the same times, and set times for interacting with others in your day.
  5. Stay connected through social media. This is such a huge advantage we have today, in that if we want to see our family and cousins and kids, we only need to push a button. We get to laugh with them, chat with them, and find out how they’re doing. This is a great tool to help keep us from feeling too isolated.
  6. Take any opportunity to get outside. Of course, be careful and practice social distancing, but being outside in nature, in the sunshine, is calming for your heart and mind.
  7. So much of our news is awful, and can lead to high stress levels for everyone. It is important to note the daily dose of bad news, but put it into as much of a positive context as you can. For example, you might consider that, yes the global pandemic is horrible, but you are doing the little bit you can to contain the spread. You are being a support to friends and family, as much as you are able. Creating positive context around sustained bad news can help prevent internal stress from building up.
  8. If you shelter in a space with others for a long period of time, you may not be accustomed to this close level of interaction. Make sure to set times for you to be alone, as well as time to be close to those individuals. This balance provides the you-time you need to allow you to unwind when you need to.
  9. Self-limit your exposure to bad news. We all want to be up to date on the latest happenings, and media feed this by producing a 24/7 news cycle of urgent headlines. Give yourself a break from the news frenzy. A constant barrage of bad news actually weakens your emotional immune system, making it more likely that stress can get to you.
  10. Focus on gratitude and positivity. Find and then share at least one instance of good news per day.

Shrimp Broccoli Pasta

This is one of the easiest, quickest, tastiest and most nutritious pasta dishes you will ever make. Take it from an Italian! Submitted by Luigi of South Florida. Thank you, Luigi!

You’ll Need:
  • 1 pound dry pasta
  • 1 pound shrimp (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 pound of broccoli (cut in large florets)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup parmigiano reggiano (grated)
  • Salt


Continue reading “Shrimp Broccoli Pasta”

Coronavirus vs. the Flu

Although there are still many unknowns about COVID-19, there is some solid information from researchers that sheds light on some of the similarities and differences at this time.

Infographic on COVID-19

COVID vs. The Flu: How They Each Make You Feel

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry cough, fatigue and shortness of breath. But these symptoms can also stem from the basic influenza virus as well (normally just called, the flu). A small percentage of those infected will respond with aches and pains, or sniffles. If you have any of these symptoms and especially if you have been near an area with confirmed COVID-19 cases, please contact your doctor right away.


COVID vs. The Flu: How They Each Spread

COVID-19 and the flu can be passed to another person either through the air, as when you sneeze and droplets are expelled from your nose and mouth. But they can also live on certain surfaces like a handrail, tabletop or even a cell phone that has not been disinfected.

One difference between the two is that (according to initial data) COVID-19 spreads to others faster than flu, with an infected person passing it on to an average of 2.5 additional persons. This is compared with a “spread-rate” of 1.3 persons per each infected individual.

The reason for this increased spread-rate may be because it can spread even before you have symptoms. If you are infected but have no symptoms, a person might be less careful about hygiene, distancing, self-quarantining precautions, etc. On the other hand, the flu is most likely to spread only after three days of symptoms. By that time, they person with the flu knows they have it and can take precautions. 


COVID vs. The Flu: How Severe Are Each of Them

In Quality:

Current estimates show that coronavirus is about 10 times more severe than a standard flu. Data from China show that 20% of COVID-19 patients are serious enough to get sent to the hospital. Contrast that with data from the CDC showing that about 2% of flu sufferers are bad enough to have to go to the hospital. Also, if you do get hospitalized, the recovery time there is just about twice as long as for the standard influenza.


In Quantity:

The percentage of the population that get the flu every year is just over 8% of the population. Another 12% have the flu, but no symptoms. By contrast, recent research from Harvard and the University of Hong Kong predicted that up to half the population of the world could be infected. Of course, this assumes that no vaccine is developed and social distancing controls are not carried out at all.


How Deadly Are They:

In the US population, getting sick from the flu will result in 1 death for every thousand people (0.1%). At this moment, COVID-19 is 10 times more deadly, resulting in the deaths of 10 people per thousand.

There are many contingencies, of course: age, gender, pre-existing chronic conditions, etc., which all affect the death rate. Plus, the situation is very fluid at this very early stage of the pandemic. Once more is known, that number (10X more deadly) may change a bit. Suffice it to say, however, that this virus is far more lethal than a regular seasonal flu.