To help combat coronavirus, America has been under strict social distancing guidelines for over two months, depending on where you live. As states begin to reopen and social distancing rules are updated, here’s how to stay safe while expanding who you’re seeing during the quarantine.

To stay safe, experts have multiple recommendations include continuing to monitor yourself for symptoms, hanging out in smaller groups, keep gatherings outside, and wearing masks to protect friends. And, continue to wash your hands and practice good hygiene rules. And, follow government or state orders. If your state hasn’t relaxed guidelines, then you shouldn’t be relaxing them.

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“Broadly speaking, it will probably be okay to see family and friends in small groups while carefully monitoring symptoms,” according to Sandro Galea, MD, an epidemiologist, and professor of family medicine at Boston University’s School of Public Health.

Trust is an important part of determining who to see while relaxing social distancing guidelines. According to Jaime Ahlberg, PhD, an ethicist and associate professor of philosophy at the University of Florida, “Trust is integral to good friendships and to mitigating risk under conditions of uncertainty, with respect to contracting or spreading the virus. It will be important to be trustworthy — to be truthful and keep promises we make to our friends who want to visit with us regarding our whereabouts, social distancing practices, etc. And it will be important to have trustworthy friends if one is considering spending time together.”

Dr. Gregory Poland, a professor of medicine and infectious diseases at the Mayo Clinic and the director of the Mayo Vaccine Research Group, told Buzzfeed News that no one is safe from the virus, “There is no such thing as safe. All we can do is mitigate or reduce risk.”

Read more about protecting yourself from coronavirus. Check the CDC website for more information on how to protect yourself and check our latest article to learn how COVID-19 differs from the flu.

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Scientists believe that the spread of COVID-19, or coronavirus, started at an exotic animal market in Wuhan, China. You can help stop the incidence of viruses like these by signing this petition to ban the wildlife trade.

This is a good time to reconsider our intake of animal products to stay healthy. Eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammation, heart health, mental wellbeing, fitness goals, nutritional needs, allergies, gut health, and more! Dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, prostate cancer and has many side effects.

Interested in joining the dairy-free and meatless train? We highly recommend downloading the Food Monster App — with over 15,000 delicious recipes it is the largest plant-based recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals, and get healthy! And, while you are at it, we encourage you to also learn about the environmental and health benefits of a plant-based diet.

Catch up on our latest coronavirus coverage in One Green Planet, check out these articles:

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