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Time and again, I’m compelled to write on being healthy, something I have been going through and thinking about a lot, myself on and off, but cautiously for about a year now.
It revolves around these small changes that need to be made which eventually has a great effect for our betterment and well-being.
Well, I have learnt from my experiences! Though we have different body types and lifestyles, I am sure many others can also be benefitted from what I am going to share here.
I am not sure how many of you realize but the kind of environment and air quality we are living in today is not the same as a decade back or our childhood.
The environment is changing many folds day by day along with the air and food quality.
With the economic advancement (which is actually a good thing in disguise), lifestyle and eating habits have also changed.
Due to more job and commuting options, we tend to travel a lot these days which adds to the sedentary time altogether. No doubt, our sleep cycle is affected big time. Even if we get back home in time, we spend hours on the TV, laptop or mobile for the sake of busting our work stress. This make us indulge in guilty eating late at night and thus, affecting our sleep cycle adversely.
While it is important to earn our bread and butter, it is equally important that we see how we invest our earnings in the right kind and amount of food we consume.
For instance, those of us who are in the teaching profession have to start their day early, especially women and because of work commitment, the right and timely intake of food is neglected. We often end up feeling sluggish and lethargic. Long standing hours, back to back lectures, so much of talking, travelling to and fro to institutes – makes us feel lifeless even when we return home later in the afternoon/early evening. And amidst this, the last thing you would like to be advised will be to go for a walk.
I would say, it is imperative and not too difficult that we make small changes in our routine to closely monitor what we are buying to eat.
When fruits or vegetables are available fresh in market, why should we buy the packaged ones?
Like I have stressed earlier, avoid packaged fruits & vegetables, in order to avoid packaged tablets and syrups!
Why does buying colorful, shiny expensive fruits adds to our social status these days? Try buying from a local hawker instead of rushing to a grand super mart. You may also end up getting some blessings from the poor guy selling stuff door to door trying to earn a living.
Remember!! All that glitters is not gold, my dear!
Have you noticed that the apple that comes with a sticker does not taste the same as a seasonal apple? We should always buy seasonal fruit, as it would be fresh, free from preservatives and will be more natural.
Natural symbolizes that it is something created by nature and there is a reason why certain fruits & vegetables are available in certain time periods of the year only.
What good would a watermelon do to you in winters when you should actually be enjoying the oranges? Same applies to Mangoes that should be relished in summers.
Warning !! Beware of using it as a dessert, my friend! Rather use it as a snack or whole meal.
If you can, smell the fruit when you buy it. If the fragrance takes you back to your childhood days, buy that. This reminds me of my dear friend Prigya from my old Bangalore days when we just started our careers. She used to buy each and every mango or any piece of fruit, for that matter. If she would find only one piece worth it, she would just buy one from the whole lot.
Also, it is necessary that we try to inculcate those foods in our diet that are easily and locally available to us and more important, it is Native – meaning it is the most suitable for the climate we live in, making it the best choice.
Did we grow up eating quinoa or brown rice? I don’t remember but still managed to come so far and survive. Even I was fascinated by brown rice few months back, but with my experience I try to avoid it now and relish the polished white rice that is lighter on my gut as well.
Control your portions so that you can enjoy eating everything in required amounts. Monitor what you are eating and when. Has it occurred to you as to why you are made to follow the keto diet or the no carbs diet? Maybe we have not been taking a balanced diet so far. So yes, the key to proportionate eating is to watch what is going down that throat.
If you had enough Paranthas/bread in breakfast, try skipping chapati in lunch and just have sabzi with curd/buttermilk.
If you make it a habit to obligatorily take a lighter snack in the evening, you will automatically end up eating a lighter meal at night. Keep nuts and fruits handy. They are the best replacement for chips, of course if taken in a limited quantity. Don’t forget to carry your own water bottle as you step out of house. Sometimes the thirst is mistaken for hunger. Try it out yourself!
Besides taking care of what and when we eat, it is important that we add an activity to our routine in our daily life. I would suggest start with at least a brisk walk of 30-40 minutes.
For teachers, try putting a flat pillow under your calf muscles while you relax your legs after returning home in late afternoon and there you go, ready to rock a nice brisk walk in the evening. The pillow hack is applicable for my friends in IT as well who have long sedentary work hours.
If you are thinking of joining a gym, do some research and find a Fitness Academy/Studio instead which will not make your body machine-dependent but would use your own body weight against yourself. Even if you have an ideal weight, still indulge yourself in certain activities for the sake of being fit. Swimming, cycling, lawn tennis and badminton are a few to count on.
If you can make time for a light 15-20 minute walk post dinner, it would work as a blessing to maintain your weight as well. A small cup of milk does wonders before bed if you had an early dinner. The walk and milk will also help you fall asleep in time. One should not forget that sleeping on time is essential because if you do not relax your body, it will not let you burn calories either and is also a major cause of water retention.
Be selfish, set time and track your meals and fitness activities. Take my word, these are just the little things to be taken care of and you will see results before even realizing how easily the new habits were articulated in your routine.
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A Creative Writer by choice and an IT person by profession, Shruti likes to make
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