Below is the edited transcript of the video above:
We’re living in intense, challenging, confusing, and even bewildering times. The world keeps changing day by day, and often hour by hour. It’s hard to even keep up with the latest news, the latest public health information, or the latest coronavirus tips and recommendations. If you’re on social media, you’re probably also dealing with conspiracy theories, unproven advice, and fatalism from friends and acquaintances.
And social isolation doesn’t help. In times of crisis, humans naturally come together to support and comfort each other. In this crisis, we have to curb our natural impulse to reach out physically, and instead make do with mostly digital-only contact.
A lot of people are scared — and rightly so. You might be worried about your ability to reliably access important medications or to get the food you need for your family. You might be worried about your job, your retirement savings, your health and safety (and that of the people you love), or about your ability to travel and visit family.
While there’s a lot of uncertainty and many things out of your control, there are still things that you can do to help yourself and others. In fact, they can be doubly effective; first, in the benefits they provide, and second, by affirming that you do have some control, which can reduce stress and boost your mental state.
Understanding Your Health Reality
We’re hearing a lot of coronavirus prevention tips like washing our hands, using hand sanitizer, and maintaining social distancing. And while these are very important ways to stay healthy, there’s also something else we’re not hearing as much that I think is critically important. Every time you take a bite of food, you’re either optimizing or weakening your immune health. And so, what you eat helps to shape your underlying health reality.
While there are no guarantees in life, and COVID-19 can become devastating for anyone, you can give your body a fighting chance to respond effectively and resiliently in these times by eating well and taking care of yourself. And that is no small thing.
Optimizing Your Food Security
Now, I realize a lot of us don’t have all of our normal options to choose from. At least in my community, grocery store shelves are pretty bare right now. Maybe they are near you as well. And maybe you have to travel a little further than normal to find what you need. But here’s what I want you to know about that. The supply chain isn’t fundamentally devastated. Food will keep coming, at least in most communities. And so, you may need to practice patience and be extra persistent and resourceful during this time. Ask your local grocery stores and markets when they expect food deliveries, so you can prepare accordingly — and order online if you can.
But now is also a great time to localize our food economies as much as we can too. So, if you have the ability to access CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture), local farms, and other direct relationships with farmers in your community, you might want to consider doing so. And here’s a bonus coronavirus tip for you: It’s also a great time to plant seeds. There’s an incredible sense of food security when you have an edible garden in your own backyard, or front yard, or in pots on your balcony or patio. Even a crop as simple as sprouts or microgreens can provide you with essential phytonutrients, as well as the joy that comes from tending plants and watching them grow.
Use Your Time Wisely
Some folks have more time on their hands right now and are bingeing Netflix and trying to escape from the craziness. And some people are eating unhealthy foods that give them comfort. I understand if these are things you may want to do. But one of the best coronavirus tips I can give you is to take some time, and some of your precious, sacred attention, to learn, grow, and discover how you can optimize your health.
How can you make choices that will set you up for greater security, health, and vibrancy now and long-term? See how you can go about preparing the healthiest and tastiest meals possible. Don’t be the person who resolves to get good at cooking, and days later they have perfectly toasted Pop Tarts.
How do you have more food self-reliance and food security? Spend time in your home or community garden planting seeds. Make diet and lifestyle choices that serve the health and vitality you want (and need). And keep on learning, and growing, so you can create food and lifestyle habits that are aligned with your values and that support your health.
Whatever happens with COVID-19, I think we have important choices to make as a society about whether we go back to business as usual or take this as an opportunity to adjust what we’re doing and how we’re living for the greater benefit of all. And we have important choices as individuals and families about whether we take this as an opportunity to make the choices we knew we should have been making all along.
Focus on Community (Even from Afar)
A lot of people feel lonely in the modern world. But as a result of the coronavirus, we need to stay at home, shelter in place, and practice social distancing. While we know this is an important strategy in the fight to stop the spread of COVID-19, it can also lead to increased feelings of loneliness or isolation.
We’ve lost the ability to attend large social gatherings (or, in some cases, even watch them on TV). Our sporting events, concerts, conferences, and festivals have been canceled by organizers, creators, and government officials. But staying home doesn’t mean you need to close your heart to relationships and stop all communication with other human beings. It just means you have to get more creative in how you nurture those relationships, lean into them, and find new ones.
In the modern world, there are all kinds of ways we can connect and communicate. You can still send letters the old fashioned way, write emails, and make phone calls. And you can also utilize technology and the Internet for video chatting and other virtual meetups.
And these virtual gatherings are one of the things that Food Revolution Network is so excited to support right now. We want to be a trustworthy resource for all the people who say, “Hey, in a time like this, I want to be safe. I want to keep my loved ones safe. I care about my health, and I care about my community. I want to be learning and growing so that I can contribute to health and vitality.” With all the panic, chaos, fear, and uncertainty, this is a time for learning, for understanding the science, and making compassionate, loving, and conscious choices.
We’re Here for You
This is a scary moment—for ourselves, our families, our communities, our nations, and the world. Millions of people suddenly have to worry — not just about the virus, but about how to keep earning income and putting food on the table.
Fred “Mr.” Rogers often said, when times get scary, “Look for the helpers. You’ll always find people who are helping.”
At Food Revolution Network, we are here to help you rise to the challenge. So, stay safe. Take good care of yourself. Keep learning. Keep loving. Remember you were born for this moment. We were all born for this moment. We all have within our DNA, within ourselves, the capacity to respond courageously and resiliently to all sorts of challenges. Our ancestors proved that. They went through times and hardships we can hardly even imagine. We, too, have the capacity to respond with courage, love, and conviction, and that’s what we’ve got to do.
And however things go in the world around us, I want you to know we’re here for you. Let’s remember to keep loving, keep caring, keep looking out for those who are most vulnerable. Keep doing the things that will help us to make the best choices we possibly can in response to uncertain times. We don’t control what goes on in the world around us. There’s a lot beyond our control. But we do get some say in the choices we make. And those play a fundamental role in shaping our destiny.
So, coronavirus tips aside, thank you for all the choices you make to stand for love, compassion, courage, sustainability, and possibility in these troubled times. Together we will find ways to get through this. As Richard Hendrick wrote recently:
“Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul.
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.”
Thank you so much for your partnership in this movement of sanity, and love, and compassion, and health. Let’s do this. Let’s create a better world together, in all the ways we can, with the choices we make every day.
10 Coronavirus Tips & Resources to Bookmark Right Now
1. How to Protect Yourself from Coronavirus: Supporting Your Immune System When You May Need It Most
Food Revolution Summit speaker Mark Hyman, MD, discusses what we know so far about COVID-19, testing and treatments, and how you can help “flatten the curve.” He also shares coronavirus prevention tips on how to protect yourself and your loved ones, emphasizing the power of food to help you optimize your health.
Avoid hearsay and get coronavirus tips, facts, and the latest updates from the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC). You’ll find information for individuals, communities, and healthcare professionals on what’s being done and what the latest science says you should do.
See the latest statistics on the outbreak from the CDC, WHO, and John Hopkins University all in one place and compiled by data infrastructure company, Enigma. All updated in real time. Warning: Checking this frequently can be scary. But if you want a lot of current information, all in one place, this is the dashboard for you.
Our blog has thousands of articles, recipes, and other resources that can help provide you with the guidance you may be looking for on a specific subject. Recipes, too! Make use of the search bar to explore resources on topics of interest.
If you’re concerned about possible food shortages, this is a list of highly nutritious foods you can obtain in quantity, store easily, and that will stay fresh for long periods of time. Having the security of an exceedingly well-stocked pantry full of healthy foods can reduce stress — and greatly reduce (or even eliminate for a period of time) the need to go grocery shopping.
If you’re self-quarantining or practicing physical distancing, you may have the urge to turn on the television. Limit your exposure to the news or too much Netflix binge-watching, and instead get informed, inspired and empowered by these plant-based food documentaries.
Discover some of the best foods to optimize your immune system and which supplements you might want to consider taking.
Growing your own food may be one of the most powerful steps you can take for your health — and the health of your family and the planet. This article can help.
This article covers the dos and don’ts of how to store fresh fruit and vegetables in your home. Get maximum nutrition and delicious bang for your produce bucks.
Discover what science says about the best way to wash your produce to remove pesticides and pathogens.
Tell us in the comments:
- How are you responding to the COVID-19 pandemic?
- What strategies are you implementing to optimize your health?
- What do you think of these coronavirus tips and resources?