Love yourself. Choose a healthy living. Enjoy life, says nutritionist Theepa.

Life can be hard when one has to choose healthy eating over those attractive come—hither shouting images of succulent, shiny, yummy but sinfully junky foods. What's worse— they taste just as good as they look. Unavoidable thanks to the numerous such joints dotting every street — and they are not even in the corners. They are all over, winking at you, inviting, smiling, and shining. Quickly they get produced on your plate and before you know it land in your stomach. Literally. And then they stay. Happily adding on the inches and pounds, making you grow from overweight to obese.

Countries like the UK have introduced a ban on the J Food adverts for kids. “Because kids who feast on have lower IQ levels and are the perfect candidates for cholesterol, diabetes, high blood fat. This was found in a 2008 study conducted there,” says nutritionist Theepa K. Some countries even levy special taxes on foods that are loaded with the ‘J' factor like caffeine, oil and yes, sugar. “However,” says the lady, with a twinkle in her shining eyes. “All is not lost. You can find salvation. By making ‘ healthier' choices. Yes, even at a junk food joint.” She then goes on to tell us the how and whats.

Simple choices

Try eating steamed salads and go low on the dressing. Instead squeeze some lemon (vitamin C) with salt and pepper with a sprinkle of olive oil. It does taste yummy and will not promote the fat cause in your body.

Try those yummy cups of corn. They are steamed, salty, quick, ready to go and easily available. Perfect for a food craving. Or even popcorn. Maybe with a little flavoured cheese sprinkled on it.

Many of the fast food places now offer grilled options. Take those instead of the deep fried variety. Get the taste, not the expanding waist.

Remember those fizzy drinks? Just say no to those flavoured empty processed sugar calories. Instead have a hot bowl of clear soup. Or a cool, naturally sweet fresh fruit juice.

Breakfast is a must seven days a week. Grab some muesli on the go. It packs the nutrition and the fibre your body needs first thing in the morning. Avoid the frosted cornflakes or fruit loops. “Too much sugar,” says Theepa.

Yes, pizzas are delicious. You can make them healthy by using the whole wheat base or the multi grain base available in stores today. If you must call for one, try not adding an extra topping of cheese. Instead ask for extra mushrooms, veggies and olives.

Chinese food is yummy and full of veggies. Only ask the restaurant you are eating at not to add flavour enhancers like that mono sodium granulate. Those are bad news.

If you simply must eat a pizza or burger, have it as a meal instead of a snack. And once a week is quite enough.