Life Desk :
New Year brings in joy, hope for a better tomorrow and motivates us with energy to look forward to all the challenges that the year may bring. We also make resolutions every year, keeping in mind the mistakes that we made in the previous year and hoping to overcome our shortcomings in the following year.
These new decisions usually revolve around money, health, education and approach to life. The most common resolution on people's list is to lose weight. We might be healthy, however we always yearn to lose few kilos.
This is the No.1 goal for many who want to look and feel better. Being overweight or weighing 5% more than your ideal body weight or obese, (more than 10% of your ideal body weight) can increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. On the other hand, losing weight and maintaining a healthy body weight reduces the risk of all these diseases and makes you feel good about yourself.
Why is Weight Loss Important?
Shedding just 5% of your body weight decreases total body fat, visceral fat or the dangerous kind that surrounds the organs, and liver fat. It can also lower blood pressure and improve insulin sensitivity, according to a study done by Faidon Magkos et al published in the journal Cell Metabolism.
Lowers cholesterol levels : Regardless of the amount of weight loss, overweight and obese women who lost weight over two years decreased their total cholesterol scores, and the effect on health sustained for two years, according to a 2013 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association.
Reduces the risk of bone and joint problems: Weight loss was associated with a significantly lower risk of knee osteoarthritis among women who were overweight. For every 11lbs weight loss, the risk reduced by 50%.
Better self-esteem: Even when you don't reach the your target, a gradual weight loss makes you feel good about yourself. In a 2009 study on 900 patients who recently lost weight of about five to 10 percent of their body weight scored higher on measures of physical function and self-esteem.
Improved sleep: Within 6 months of losing 5% of body weight, obese adults were able to sleep better and had improved moods.
Since the main aim is to lose weight, many of us take extremes routes. Following exotic diet patterns or food habits of celebrities, not taking into consideration personal preferences nor the ability to adhere. It may not be a bad idea to adopt different diets or to workout an extra hour, although sticking to the schedule is equally important to avoid weight re-gain.
There are simple ques that can help us shed weight and stay healthy.
Cut down on sugar:
Sugar, in the sense, table sugar and the foods that are made with sugar. But to start off, just try to reduce the sugar you add to the milk or coffee or tea that you drink everyday.
Reducing sugar intake:
helps in weight loss
can lead to better mental health and helps the body cope with stress
reduces the risk of inflammation
lowers the chances of liver disease and heart disease by preventing fat accumulation
Train Your Brain to Workout
Deciding to exercise regularly either by registering for gym program or joining a friend for a walk, rather than just watching videos of exercises routines can make a difference. Do actually start exercising, instead of just talking about it. Begin with a 10-minute walk or a jog or whatever you are comfortable with. The exercise should motivate you to do it everyday. The benefits of exercise is well known. Be it for a healthy adult who just needs to lose extra kilos or for a patient who has undergone a bypass surgery.
Working out regularly
keeps blood sugar levels under control
reduces bad cholesterol levels which cause heart disease
increases good cholesterol levels
improves the ability of medications to act on the body
keeps the body active and improves mobility
Sleep For Atleast 7 Hours
Sleeping for a minimum of 7 hours is essential for the mind to relax and for the body to detox. Also, you tend to feel fresh, when you go early to bed.
sleep helps in weight control and reduces the risk of overeating
getting enough sleep reduces the risk of injuries
sleep helps the brain process the information we have gained throughout the day
insufficient sleep can affect blood sugar levels and increase chances of diabetes
Choose to eat minimally processed food
Processed food is easier to cook and can be more flavorful, in some cases, however most of it lacks nutrients and has high salt, sugar and fat. Food is meant to provide nutrients to the body and help us stay healthy. But when food is scrutinized to an extent that it has very minimal nutrients or is just fortified, it is wise to avoid them and opt for natural foods.
For example, use wheat flour for those pan cakes or wraps, instead of buying processed sheets. Also, fruits and vegetables that are bought fresh are better than the canned. Fresh foods have more nutrients and antioxidants that help the body fight diseases.
Never forget to de-stress
This is the most important resolution for a healthier you. Make sure you do things that you love and also extend a helping hand that can make people happy.
This also does not mean that social habits, such as smoking or alcohol can help you de-stress. They do more harm than good. If you are used to smoking and sipping a few drinks when you are tensed, quit this immediately.
Instead, choose one hobby that you always love doing. It can be painting or skating or taking the dog for a walk or baking. Hobbies help us relax. Adequate sleep is one other way to de-stress.
Exercising regularly keeps the mind relaxed
Following these simple easy-to-do tips one by one can make you live healthier. The more you pay attention to your body, the more you will know, the how important it is to keep it healthy.