A 15-Minute Practice That May Treat COVID Side Effects
Many people who contract COVID-19 recover within a few weeks; however, some people experience long COVID and experience symptoms for weeks and months. “Long haulers” are known for their debilitating side effects.
Walking and moderate exercise may alleviate long-term COVID side effects, according to a new study. In particular, it can reduce inflammation that leads to diabetes and depression.
Even better, you don’t have to exercise intensely to reap the benefits. Walking for 30 minutes daily, split into two 15-minute sessions, is all you need.
How exercise can help with long COVID
According to Dr. Purvi Parikh, MD, allergist/immunologist with Allergy & Asthma Network, COVD infections cause long-term symptoms mainly diabetes and depression. Low impact activity may be a good addition to your regimen as soon as it is safe.”
Physical activity helps repair blood vessels damaged by infection, he says.
Dr. William Li, MD, internationally renowned medical doctor, researcher, Angiogenesis Foundation President/Founder and author of New York Times bestseller, Eat To Beat Disease, says while there is an autoimmune and inflammatory component to long COVID there is also a neuropathic component. “Exercise assists the body in repairing these problems.”. Exercise for long COVID is well-founded.”
Manageable forms of exercise to try
Maintain a low level of intensity with any physical activity if you have long COVID. Overexertion can worsen the symptoms.
“I would start with walking, yoga, and low-impact activities as sometimes vigorous exercise can worsen long-term conditions,” Dr. Parikh says. “Heavy exercise temporarily increases inflammation in the body, and COVID is a disease of persistent inflammation.” I recommend moderate walking for 15-20 minutes daily and gradually increasing and other low impact activities that don’t significantly increase heart rate until you know your body can cope.”
Also, yoga improves muscular endurance and oxygen uptake (a person’s ability to take in oxygen).
Here are some easy ways to exercise, according to Dr. Li:
- Going for a walk around the block (or even around your house)
- Taking a hike in the woods
- walking your dog
- Playing tennis
- Using a treadmill
- Going for a bike ride or using a stationary bike.
This activity gets your heart rate up and is aerobic. About 30 minutes is enough to help lower inflammation, improve immunity, stimulate circulation, and restore gut health. COVID patients must exercise to get better.”