A prosperous and developing nation is shaped by the people who inhabit it. So, on this Independence Day ensure for yourself an extra dose of good health as it is the right of every citizen of this country. Here are 15 great and unique health tips to make you fitter and healthier
Tip 1: Bask in Your Breakfast
The best way to kick-start your day is by filling yourself with a nutritious and wholesome breakfast. The age-old saying, ‘’Eat Breakfast like a King, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper to lose weight’’ should be enough to convince you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A good breakfast provides you with energy all day long, improves physical performance and productivity at work.
What you can do: For breakfast choose eggs (protein + fat), a portion of fruit (vitamins + minerals) and a portion of whole grain foods like oatmeal, pasta or barley (complex carbohydrates). If you are a vegetarian, then you can opt for cheese instead of eggs.
Tip 2: Rockabye Baby
Nowadays people are cutting down on their sleep time due to a number of reasons such as heavy workloads, excessive use of social media etc. Scientific studies have proven that a good night’s sleep (8-9 hours for women and 7-8 hours for men) is crucial for an efficient mind; it helps to improve cognitive skills, memory and keeps gastrointestinal disorders at bay. An ideal situation would be if you went to sleep and woke up at the same time every day.
What you can do: To sleep better, you should ensure that your room is free from bright lights. Avoid using your cell phones or your laptops at least an hour before sleep. Scientists say that the white and blue light emitted by such devices hampers your brain functioning; it disrupts the release of melatonin which helps you to sleep.
Tip 3: Hydration Matters
Drinking ample amounts of water every day is greatly beneficial for your health and well-being. Water helps to flush out toxins, keeps your skin/hair healthy and beautiful and reduces feelings of dehydration.
What you can do: Try to carry a bottle of water and take small sips from time to time. For an extra dash of energy you can add a bit of glucose powder.
Tip 4: Work out time for your workouts
Whether you decide to indulge yourself in some weight training, yoga or sports; the benefits of physical activities or exercise such as these are countless. Working out increases lean body mass (those coveted abs) and torches the extra flab from the body. Working out also improves sleep, the health of your hair/ skin, your sex life and your overall health in general (both mental and physical).
What you can do: You don’t have to lift dumbbells or do crunches if you don’t like to, instead involve yourself in your favorite sport like a game of soccer/ cricket or go for a half hour walk (or jog) on a daily basis (helps in clearing up the head too!).
An important note – Don’t forget to stretch unless you are already into yoga or Pilates! Stretching in the morning (after waking up from sleep) increases blood flow to the muscles and ensures an extra dose of oxygen. This will give you more flexibility and help you to do your physical activities more effectively.
Tip 5: The Inbetweeners
It is recommended by most dieticians and nutritionists that aside from your usual three big meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner), you should eat small meals every 2-3 hours, this helps in improving metabolism. Not eating for long hours (more than 4-5 hours at a stretch) can cause a drop in your blood sugar levels and lead to symptoms such as sugar cravings and sluggishness/ fatigue.
What you can do: Have small (in terms of proportion) yet healthy snacks such as peanuts or chickpeas, a fruit, low-fat biscuits (100% whole grain), energy bars, or fruit smoothies (made from real fruits without the sugar).
Tip 6: Green Tea Wonders
A cup of green tea daily is good for your health. Green tea is packed with antioxidants that ensures better brain function and lowers the chances of cancer. It also clears your system by flushing out toxins and leaves you with an overall feeling of freshness and calmness.
What you can do: Ideally have your cup of green tea in the morning or at the end of the day. But do take care not to exceed your daily recommended caffeine intake (not more than 2-3 cups), as too much caffeine can lead to sleep disorders, restlessness and stomach trouble.
Also, instead of adding sugar (if you like it sweet), add honey or jaggery to your cup of green tea.
Tip 7: Include Fruits and Vegetables in your diet
Doctors recommend that you should include at least 4-5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day. Vegetables are low in fat and contain important nutrients like calcium and manganese that are needed for the body to function effectively. Fruits, like vegetables, are also a powerhouse of various minerals and Vitamins that help you to stay healthy.
What you can do: You can start by including a fruit like an apple or a banana in your breakfast platter. ¾ of your big meals (lunch and dinner) should consist of vegetables, so include dishes like vegetable based salads with dips or vegetable broths.
Tip 8: Cleanliness and Hygiene
Maintaining a certain level of cleanliness and hygiene are vital for your health. You need to keep yourself clean at all times to prevent the development of bacterial infections such as acne, eczema, skin rashes or ringworm. Due attention should be given to your skin, hair and also your teeth to eliminate the growth of any kind of germs.
What you can do: Try to brush at least twice a day (after waking up in the morning and before going to bed) if not after every meal. While brushing, use a soft-bristled toothbrush; hold it in the same way as you hold a pencil and brush for about two minutes. Aside from brushing overall cleanliness is mandatory for a healthier and happier you; take baths every day, exfoliate your skin to unclog pores and remove dead skin cells and use a moisturizer to keep the skin soft and smooth.
Tip 9: Make time to De-Stress
A lot of your internal health depends on the health of your mind. Try to keep yourself happy and positive irrespective of the situation at hand. Excessive stress leads to mental and physical problems such as depression, increased chances of a stroke, fluctuations in your weight etc. Thus you need to ensure that your stress levels do not take a toll on your body by making time to de-stress on a regular basis.
What you can do: Try to learn something new every day by reading a good book, or watch a movie. Try to calm your senses by listening to soulful music. Talk to positive-minded people and surround yourself with your loved ones (like your family or your friends). You can also join a laughing club or meditation class. Involve yourself in activities that bestow you with internal peace and happiness. Kick out stress from your system and say hello to happiness!
Tip 10: Massage & Relax
A weekly if not daily session of massage and relaxation will help to remove stress from your body. People who are confined to a desk job every day or any kind of work that involves sitting in one place for that matter often suffer from back pain and stiffness. Stress gets accumulated in various joints and that causes discomfort. Regular sessions of massages can also ensure proper functioning of your joints and muscles.
What you can do: For relaxation, you can take a bath with essential and nourishing oils such as lavender or rosemary. Lavender oil for example heals you internally by removing any kind of pain, improves respiratory problems and also blood circulation levels. Opt for spa treatments like hot oil massages once a month to keep your joints mobile.
Tip 11: Load up on Herbs
Herbs are widely known for their ability to enhance the flavor of food and their overall health benefits. Herbs are anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial; in the old times monks and Indian sages were able to treat a number of health diseases with the help of herbs.
What you can do: Try to include herbs such as tulsi, neem or turmeric in your daily diet. Tulsi is great for people suffering from respiratory problems. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties that help in better digestion.
Did you know that taking a whiff of rosemary could improve your memory and your sense of alertness?
Tip 12: Say no to Smoking and Drinking
A number of health problems could be solved if people could quit smoking and drinking. Smoking causes grave damage to your lungs causing COPD and/or pneumonia and drinking damages the liver resulting in diseases such as hepatitis or cirrhosis.
What you can do: Should you face difficulty in completely quitting, limit your smoking and alcohol consumption. Take up activities that divert your attention from smoking and drinking such as running, meditation etc.
Tip 13: Cut down on the two S’s
You stand the risk of developing a number of diseases if you consume too much sugar and sodium per day. As per the latest research, you should not intake more than a gram of sodium in a day. A high sodium rich diet may lead to lower bone density. Too much sugar can lead to health problems like obesity and diabetes.
What you can do: Try to monitor the amount of salt that is present in foods. Also, cut down on sugary drinks such as soft-drinks and packaged fruit juice. Have juice made from real fruits instead. You can also choose to add honey or jaggery in your food instead of sugar.
Tip 14: Omega 3
Omega 3 fatty acids lower the chances of heart disease, mental disorders and asthma. Omega 3 fatty acids also play a role in keeping your skin healthy as they regulate oil production and hydration of the skin.
What you can do: Try to include fish like mackerel, anchovies, herring, salmon, etc in your diet. These fishes particularly are high in omega 3 fatty acids. Have these lightly cooked or baked for maximum health benefits. You can also include foods like flaxseeds and chia seeds if you are a vegetarian.
Tip 15: Fasting Helps Too!
Fasting is another great way to ensure better health. Opt for an intermittent fast once in every day 15 to 20 days. This helps to enhance your hormone function which will in turn help you to lose weight faster. Did you know that fasting also helps to remove toxins from your body and cleanses the system?
What you can do: If you are a beginner, don’t fast for more than 6-8 hours at a stretch. You can also sip on lime water or green tea to reduce food cravings during your fasts. Avoid too much activity during your fasting days.
Want to know more? Call 1800-121-2323 to get the best tips on healthy living.