Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.”-Buddha

Health is wealth. Preserving this wealth is only in our hands. A little variation in our lifestyle can help us preserve this wealth and keep medicines away.

Five effective habits to stay healthy:

1. Eat healthily

a) Follow the food pyramid-It gives a simple and idealistic plan for sensible eating every day.

b) Say no to preserved and packaged foods– These contribute very less to nutritional value and are overloaded with calories, unhealthy fats, and sugars.

c) Include lots of seasonal fruits and vegetables in your daily diet

-It is recommended that you eat at least 5 portions of fruits and vegetables in your diet. 1 serving portion of fruit/veggie is 80-100 grams.

d) Cut down on saturated fats– Saturated fats may increase bad cholesterol in your body which may lead to coronary heart diseases, hypertension, and obesity whereas unsaturated fats are good for health if taken in optimum quantity. Saturated fats are found in many foods, such as butter, cream, biscuits, cheese, cakes, etc. Unsaturated fats are found in foods like vegetable oils, oily fish, nuts, and avocados.

e) Drink plenty of water– • Drink 8-10 glasses of water a day

• You can add lemon, ginger, or mint leaves to enhance the taste or flavor

• stop taking fizzy or carbonated drinks

• Cut down on alcohol and caffeine

f) Cut down sugar– Sugary foods and drinks are high in calories and contribute very less to nutrition. If consumed too often, it can contribute to weight gain. Take foods with natural sweetness such as honey, fruits, milk, etc. Avoid sugary drinks, sugary cereals, chocolate cakes, and puddings.

2. Stop stuffing yourself

The biggest problem with an average person’s diet these days is that too much food is consumed than what is actually needed. The result is obesity which is the main cause of a whole lot of chronic diseases.

To avoid this problem

• Plan your meal every day.

• Plan the portion of each meal.

• Give a break of 3-4 hours between two meals.

• Eat the last meal of the day 3-4 hours before sleep.

3. Exercise regularly Exercise is essential for proper health and fitness. You can join some sports or choose any form of exercise like swimming, cycling, jogging, yoga, or simply walking.

Benefits of Exercise

• Strong bones and muscles

• Proper weight maintenance

• Reduced risk of chronic diseases

• Improved digestion

• Improved blood circulation and energy levels

4. Manage your stress positively

Stress is a natural feeling of not being able to specific demands and events. It can come from work, relationships, and financial pressure. When humans face some challenges, the body responds to them in many ways. The body produces some chemicals which trigger some physical reactions such as increased blood pressure, faster heart rate, sweating, slower digestive system, sleeping problems, and many more. Some lifestyle measures can help in managing stress such as

• Breathing, Yoga, and meditation.

• A healthful balanced diet

• Sharing feelings with friends and family.

• Positive attitude.

• Faith in God.

5. Pursue your hobby

Having a hobby that you enjoy brings joy and enriches your life. It helps relieve stress by keeping you productively engaged. Hobbies give you a way to take your mind off the stresses of everyday life. Pursuing a hobby also acts as therapy. Behavioral experts from all around the world are now emphasizing the need to include hobbies in stress management techniques. People suffering from stress are encouraged to pursue their favorite activities. Doing something non-routine is a good way to deal with stress.

Author Meena Chugh is a certified dietician and nutritionist

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