Watch your weight

Weight gain is a major problem these days and every one wants to look slim for cosmetics or health reasons. Many are unhappy with their present weight but don’t know how to change into a healthy lifestyle. You may want to look like the models or actors in magazines and on TV, but those goals might not be healthy or realistic for you. Besides, no magical diet or pill will make you look like someone else.

Also read: Know your food groups

Weight loss is not very difficult. You can eat and enjoy food and lose weight. There is no need for starvation any more. People who lose weight quickly by crash dieting or other extreme measures usually gain back all the kilos they lost because they haven’t permanently changed their lifestyle and eating habits. The best weight management process is that which you can maintain for a lifetime.

Try to keep these suggestions and follow these simple rules for a healthy weight.

>Weight gain is a major problem these days and every one wants to look slim for cosmetics or health reasons. Many are unhappy with their present weight but don’t know how to change into a healthy lifestyle. You may want to look like the models or actors in magazines and on TV, but those goals might not be

healthy or realistic for you. Besides, no magical diet or pill will make you look like someone else.

Weight loss is not very difficult. You can eat and enjoy food and loose weight. There is no need for starvation any more. People who lose weight quickly by crash dieting or other extreme measures usually gain back all of the kilos they lost because they haven’t permanently changed their lifestyle and eating habits. The best weight management process is that which you can maintain for a lifetime. Try to keep these suggestions and follow these simple rules for a healthy weight.

Skipping breakfast

Breakfast is the most important food of the day. This meal is very important since it meet the needs of the nourishment after the 10–12 hours of gap. This meal should never be missed since it will be very harmful to the body. An ideal breakfast must provide at least 30 to 40% of total calorie requirement of a person. Breakfast needs to have a good balance of protein, fat and carbohydrate to provide the right amount of fuel to keep going through the morning.

Fatty foods should be avoided and breakfast should be light, fulfilling meal like whole meal toast, whole grain cereal porridge like oats, wheat flakes, broken wheat, milk or yoghurt or eat stuffed vegetable with curd or sandwiches with egg or idly, Sambhar for a very healthy and whole some diet. Some fresh fruits can be added to it. A good break fast will stabilize your blood sugar, emotions, and nervous system.

Salads

When we talk about salads first thing comes in mind is the raw tomatoes, cucumber, radish, cabbage, carrot, lettuce with salt and lemon dressing which is common among us. No, that is not all. Salad can be made tasty by the addition of other low calorie ingredients. Salads are rich in B complex vitamins and minerals and lots of fiber. Salads can be eaten as “appetizers” that will not increase appetite or as a main course. Salad greens particularly ice berg lettuce, spinach, watercress are good source of folate which is an important nutrient. Salad leaves are also a use full source of the anti oxidant nutrient. They also contain beta-carotene and vitamin C. Salads are generally vegetable based. It can be eaten raw or tossed with low calorie dressing or oils like virgin olive oil makes it healthy and tastier. Sprouts, cooked shreds of chicken or fish can be added for proteins. A healthy combination of soup, salad or soup, salad and a whole wheat bread sandwich makes a complete meal.

Watch your drinks

Water does not contain any calories. There is a general notion that drinking water will put on weight which is wrong. Water is essential for all the body processes especially digestion and absorption. Drink 12 –15 glasses of water per day. Those who find it difficult to drink so much plain water at least drink 5-6 glasses of plain water. The rest of the water can be taken as thin buttermilk, lime water, tender coconut water or fresh fruit juice with out sugar. Never wait till thirsty keep drinking safe water in regular intervals

especially before every meal. Count the calories which you take in carbonated beverages, juices, and other drinks in every day. Avoid those extra calories and enjoy the plain water and sugar-free drinks to quench your thirst.

High fiber cereals

A healthy way to loose weight is through eating three to four meals a day. The diet should be balanced nutritionally. It must contain balanced proportions of protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamins, minerals, and fiber and also should be low in calorie. There are some foods that increase the bulk but with few calories and there are some others that alter intestinal hormone level and help you to lose appetite.

Cereals such as bajra, jowar, whole wheat, ragi, brown rice provide you bulk and give a feeling of fullness with their high fiber. They are also good in protein, iron, carbohydrate and B complex vitamins. They can be used for one meal since calories are slightly high. Oats, wheat flakes, broken wheat and brown poha, can also be part of a weight-loosing regime. You can take skim milk and if you prefer them sweet add ½ teaspoon honey which makes it really filling and nutritious.

Replace your snacks

Instead of munching on your way on a packet of biscuits or namkeen, try fresh fruits like watermelon, muskmelon, papaya, oranges, fresh figs, pineapple, sweet lemon and strawberries. Fruits are sweet but they are relatively low in calories but a good source of fiber and are packed with vitamins and minerals. Watermelon and muskmelon are the least in calories. They contain only 16 kcal and 17 kcal in 100 gms of their edible portion. They also contain good amounts of iron. Muskmelon is rich in sodium and potassium where as watermelon has less sodium and high amount of potassium.

Fruit is a valuable source of antioxidants, which helps to protect against degenerative diseases including cancer and heart diseases. Fruits and un sweetened fruit juices can help to cleanse the body by flushing out waste products and harmful toxins. Fresh fruits will provide most of our daily requirements of vitamin C from oranges, pineapple, sweet lime, and strawberries. Papaya and oranges are a rich source of beta-carotene, the natural

form of vitamin A. Since fruits are low in calories and nutrient dense it is an excellent food for loosing weight. Fruits like mango, banana, jackfruit, sapota, custard apple, need to be avoided since they are high in calories and carbohydrates.

Small and frequent meals

Some people have a habit of eating when bored, lonely, or stressed, or keep eating even if they are full. Try to change these habits and follow a three meal pattern with in between fruits. Eat slowly and chew the food properly because it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to recognize how much is in your stomach. Many people find it’s helpful to keep a diary of what they have eaten and when. Reviewing the diary later can help them identify the emotions they have when they overeat or whether they have unhealthy habits. Try to make small changes since they are easier to stick with than drastic ones. Reduce the

size of the portions you eat and slowly implement the healthier foods options in

your diet. Reduce the intake of fast food like pizzas, chips, and refined foods.

Don’t banish favorite foods

Don’t ever banish your favorite ice cream or chocolates or chips. Making these foods forbidden is sure to make you want them even more. If you feel like having a piece of cake or your favorite ice cream at a party go for it. But enjoy salads and fresh fruits on the same day on the other meal rather than eating chips or heavy meals to balance it out.

Physical activity

A healthy weight loss can be achieved by only including any form of physical activity along with these minor changes in the diet pattern. Use stairs when ever possible. Try to include walk or aerobics or cycling or swimming which ever you like to be a part of your day for 1 hour. By incorporating these changes in your daily habits not only you can lose weight but can remain healthy, which is more important.

Ms Mumtaz Khalid Ismail

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