A determined effort to follow a healthier lifestyle is a must
It is that time of the year again when dieticians and nutritionists are busy assisting people make a healthy start in the New Year.
People who get busy with festivities right from Dasara-Deepavali season up to the end of the year suddenly sit up to make health resolutions only when the New Year comes knocking. But it is important to follow a healthier lifestyle all through the year. A determined effort to do so is important, say dieticians.
Asserting that people can have a little fun and party during New Year, dietician H.S. Prema says it is important that people should not overindulge in fried, junk and calorie-rich food stuff. “Eating is a part of fun and we cannot ask people to miss that fun. But such fun should be occasional, controlled and planned. It is essential that they eat healthy food even as they party,” she says.
Advising people to try fruit cakes or plum cakes instead of pastries and regular cakes with a coating of artificial sweeteners, Ms. Prema says: “Ice-creams can be had with fruit salad and fried junk stuff can be replaced with Indian chats such as samosas, vadas and kachoris. But all this is allowed only occasionally.”
Nutrition and wellness consultant Sheela Krishnaswamy says the best way to stay healthy is to eat right, exercise regularly, get adequate sleep, avoid smoking and manage stress.
Advising people to maintain a level of physical activity that matches the calories consumed, Ms. Krishnaswamy says: “The common grouse of most people who come for consultation is that they do not have time to exercise. But it is essential that people make time for themselves — either to exercise or involve in some recreation or hobby.”
She advises people to choose the right food and avoid ready-to-eat and packaged food. “It is always better to eat fresh, natural and locally grown food.”
Both experts advise people to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, at least five servings a day. “Your meal should comprise of a variety of grains,” they say.
Exercise a must
Asserting on the importance of exercise, the experts say regular workout will help reduce the risk of developing obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases and maintaining lipid levels. Keeping off smoking is also a must, they advise.
Ms. Krishnaswamy says people can choose a convenient time to exercise and stick to it.
“Coffee breaks, lunch time, evening, or pre-dinner time can be used for exercising or walking for short periods. Other activities like stair-climbing instead of using the elevator or pacing while talking on the phone can help burn a few extra calories,” she explains.