Contributed by- Saumya Shatakshi, Senior Nutritionist
Obesity is a side effect of our unhealthy food choices and sedentary lifestyle. Increasing waistline, clothes that don’t fit, breathlessness after even slight physical activity, lower self confidence, nicknames like fatso are all part of an obese person’s life. Obesity also leads to a lot of health complications and makes you much prone to several diseases like high cholesterol, heart diseases, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney diseases, fatty liver etc.
Over the years it has become a global epidemic. Most of the world’s population lives in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight. Shocking? Isn’t it? According to World Health Organisation, worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980. In 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults (18 years and older) were overweight. Of these over 600 million were obese. 41 million children under the age of 5 were overweight or obese in 2014.
Going by this data, it becomes important to make everyone affected around us understand that obesity is preventable with some basic changes in our personal choices. In this article, Saumya Shatakshi, Senior Nutritionist, Healthians has advised few simple doable changes that will help you to stay ‘flab’ free:
Stay away from eating ‘CRAP’
Few things are a strict NO when it comes to keeping obesity at bay. CRAP includes them all.
- C- Carbonated drinks
- R- Refined sugars
- A- Artificial sweeteners
- P- Processed foods
Though, these foods are ‘taste bud-friendly’, they are definitely not ‘health-friendly’ or ‘waist friendly’. So, remember to stay away from CRAP.
Never skip breakfast
As the saying goes, ‘Breakfast is the most important meal of the day’; always remember to start your day with a healthy helping. Moreover, skipping the first meal of the day makes you hungrier, which will add to your fast food cravings. You will tend to make unhealthier food choices to satiate your hunger pangs. Recall the days when you have stepped out of the house without having a stomach-full of breakfast. What did you eat for early lunch that day? Samosa or a packet of chips bought from the road side vendor, patties from your office canteen or did you order a burger online? Starving yourself and skipping meals is not a smart idea, it does more harm than good.
Rethink your drink
Switch to natural herbs like green tea, cinnamon tea or ginger tea as they control the storage of fat in the body and help in losing weight. Try adding a light dose of triphala powder to your tea. It is a mild laxative that regulates your digestive system and helps in weight loss. Drinking more water acts as appetite suppressant as a result you eat less. Water also cleanses and detoxifies the impurities of our bodies. Instead of packaged juices, opt for fresh fruit juices. Go back to your Indian roots to satiate your thirst. Pick lassi, matha, chach, aam panna, jal jeera, nimbu paani over cold drinks. These natural homemade drinks have no added preservatives and are healthy.
Give your kitchen a diet make-over
Ditch junk foods and start stocking up on healthy staples like fresh fruits, vegetables, wholegrain cereals, low fat dairy products in your kitchen. To make your fruit or vegetable salad tasty, you can also add low fat salad dressings or just squeeze half a lemon on it. It will not only enhance the taste but will help in digestion as well.
Get more exercise, reduce more weight
An active lifestyle will add many healthy years to your life but a sedentary lifestyle will give you many health problems. So, to stay healthy, you should concentrate on having an active life. Add a physical activity to your daily routine that you enjoy doing most. Try and opt for stairs whenever possible, and keep taking short breaks and short walks in between your work. Always opt for healthy hacks like cycling, walk and talk and a stroll with a pet in your daily schedule.
Control your portion size and chew food
Well reducing your portion sizes every time you eat will help you to consume fewer calories and have total control over how much food you consume. This technique will help you keep your weight in check as you are in total control of how much you are eating. Also, chewing each bite for a longer time helps digestion and increases absorption of nutrients, reducing your calorie intake at the same time.
Commit to making your own meals
Eating out is not only puts a strain on your pockets but also adds more pounds to your waistline. When you eat out, you have little control over the ingredients that you are consuming and it definitely cannot help you keep a check on your healthy diet. Try to make at least one to two meals a day at home, following your healthy eating plan closely.
A healthier you is a much happier you. So, let us shed those extra kilos by making some healthy lifestyle changes.
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