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While she was overweight, Monique Johnstone, the communications officer for Western Cape Government Health, insists that three months before she contracted Covid-19, she began a healthier lifestyle, helping her body to fight the virus and recover. She wanted to share her story of living with chronic disease and contracting Covid-19 as a critical health care worker and living with hypertension to raise awareness of the value of a healthy lifestyle, in addition to the Healthy Lifestyle Awareness Day commemorated on Sunday.

 

She realized that the ” worst injustice I can bring upon myself, especially when I have co-morbidities,” is taking her health for granted. People with chronic illnesses such as hypertension and diabetes are considered high-risk candidates for Covid-19, according to Western Cape Government Health, and the chances of contracting serious symptoms are probable. Therefore, when someone with a chronic illness meets people in public spaces or shopping centres, feelings of fear and anxiety may occur.

Johnstone emphasized the value of a safe and balanced lifestyle to keep her chronic condition under control, along with taking her medication regularly. I want people to know the effect and damage it can have on your body while contracting Covid-19 living with a chronic illness, along with being overweight. I joined a walking group in August 2020 at the age of 38 before contracting Covid-19, and began a healthy eating plan to regulate my weight and regain my healthy lifestyle, which I lost control of due to my busy work and fast-paced personal lifestyle with my children.

I was in control of my blood pressure and felt less stressed and exhausted. My breathing, heart rate and stamina have improved by only walking every day. ,I contracted Covid-19 in December 2020 and experienced serious symptoms such as coughing, trouble breathing, nausea, headaches, exhaustion and a fever that lasted a few days.

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” I experienced respiratory problems on day nine of isolation and was rushed to a private hospital and obtained oxygen to support me with my breathing. I was already overweight, but I believe that because three months before I contracted Covid-19 and lost a few kilograms, I began my healthy lifestyle, my body could fight this virus and I survived, thank God.

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