Intermittent fasting – The Fast and Feast diet

Intermittent fasting is also called “alternate day fasting” or “intermittent energy restriction.” It is the process of fasting and feasting alternately. It consists of eating very little or nothing at all on certain days of the week or times of the day.

What is Intermittent Fasting?

‘Intermittent fasting’ involves alternating cycles of eating and fasting without specifying which types of foods can be eaten on non-fasting days. A person’s intake is often limited to non-calorific fluids such as water, tea, coffee, and diet drinks, or it may allow a very restricted amount of daily calories on a fasting diet. Intermittent fasting became popular over the past decade, but many people are still confused about what fasting entails. Intermittent fasting involves a short period of not eating followed by a period of eating freely. Fasting does not equate to starvation, and with all intermittent fasting regimens, get to eat every day.

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Intermittent fasting is in trend and type of eating pattern in which we have to practice to limit the food intake in a way, that cycles between defined periods of fasting and non-fasting. Intermittent fasting is a type of eating with restricted calorie consumption or the use of reserved calories as fuel for the body.  It is the type of fasting restrictive diet and thus it is categorized under FAD Diet.

During periods of fasting, it’s important to consume lots of protein. Consuming at least 50 grams of protein on a fast day will help keep hunger at bay and muscle mass high. Examples of high protein fast day meals include shakes with lots of Greek yogurts, fruits, and veggies, or a large salad with lean meat, eggs, legumes or nuts. Intermittent fasting regimens involve periods of not eating followed by a period of eating freely. It is important to consume protein during periods of fasting. Intermittent fasting can be an effective way to achieve healthy body weight.

Types of Intermittent fasting
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Types of intermittent fasting

There is more than one way to implement intermittent fasting, and different methods will produce different results.

  • A 20-hour fast every day. This fast ends with one big meal each evening. During the 20 hour fasting period, raw fruits, vegetables, and some lean protein are allowed.
  • The 5:2 system. In this method, fasting is done any two non-consecutive days of the week. On fasting days, either one can consume nothing at all or limits to 500-600 calories. On the other 5 days of the week, eating isn’t restricted.
  • The Eat-Stop-Eat diet. This is a variation of the 6:1 diet which can include two 24-hour fasts per week; this involves fasting for 24 hours, once or twice a week, for example by not eating from dinner one day until dinner the next day.
Types of Intermittent fasting
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  • The 16:8 diet. This is a type of fasting for 16 hours per day by consuming all meals within an eight-hour window. Also called the Lean-gains protocol, it involves skipping breakfast and restricting the daily eating period to 8 hours, such as 1–9 p.m. Then fasting for 16 hours in between.
  • Extended overnight fast. In this version just lengthen overnight fast to last 14 hours. In other words, to fit regular meals into a span of 10 hours and fast for 14 hours overnight. This way most of the fast occurs while sleeping – painless.
  • Alternate day fasting. This consists of eating regularly one day, 20% of your normal intake the next (about 400 calories), and repeating that pattern continuously.

The most researched intermittent fasting methods are included and explained:

1. Lean-gains Daily Intermittent Fasting:

It is a 16–hour fast followed by an 8–hour eating period. Lean-gains intermittent fasting is done every day, so it becomes very easy to get into the habit of eating on this schedule. This is a great method for achieving and maintaining a lean physique.

HOW TO DO IT:

  • Fast for 16 hours every day (about 8 hours of the fast will take place while sleeping).
  • Eat the first meal of the day after the 16-hour fast.
  • After 8 hours first meal, start another 16-hour fast.
  • It does not matter when to start the 8-hour feeding period.
Types of intermittent fasting
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2. Weekly Intermittent Fasting 

If one is looking to bulk up or keep weight on, then this is a great option. Since this is only cutting out two meals per week and can enjoy many physiological benefits of fasting without losing weight.

HOW TO DO IT:

  • Fast for 24 hours every week (about 8 hours of the fast will take place while sleeping).
  • In this example, lunch on Monday is the last meal of the day. Then fast until lunch on Tuesday.

3. Alternate Day Intermittent Fasting (Fast for alternating 24-hour periods)

This style of intermittent fasting is often used in research studies, but, it isn’t very popular in the real world.

HOW TO DO IT:

  • Every other evening starts a 24-hour fast (about 8 hours of the fast will take place while sleeping). In the example below, would finish the dinner and begin a 24-hour fast on Monday at 8 pm.
  • Break the fast and start a 24-hour feeding period every other evening. For example, one can start fasting on Monday at 8 pm and eat the next meal on Tuesday at 8 pm.
  • Ideally, the alternate day intermittent fasting schedule should allow eating at least one meal a day.

Fed and Fasted

There are some true benefits of fasting and some dangers, and some claims are not backed up by science.

types of intermittent fasting
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Based on studies over the past two years from the National Institutes of Health and the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, fasting can have positive benefits when done correctly. Scientists are still researching the topic, but so far there is good news. Intermittent fasting has a link to decreases in weight, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and inflammation. Diabetes, heart disease, and blood sugar levels are generally low in people who fast. Fasting wasn’t linked to significant fatigue or mental impairments either.

Fasting every other day, or going for too long without food may lead to serious starvation-like effects such as heart and organ damage and muscle loss. People also stayed hungry while they fasted, no matter how long they kept up the diet.

Fed state

  1. Insulin high.
  2. Glucose high.
  3. Burning glucose.
  4. Storing fat.

 Fasted State

  1. Insulin low.
  2. Glucose low.
  3. Liberating fat.
  4. Burning fat

Changes that take place during Fasting

  • Human Growth Hormone (HGH): The levels of growth hormone skyrocket, increasing as much as 5 -fold. This has benefits for fat loss and muscle gain.
  • Insulin: Insulin sensitivity improves and levels of insulin drop dramatically. Lower insulin levels make stored body fat more accessible.
  • Cellular repair: When fasted, cells initiate cellular repair processes. This includes autophagy, where cells digest and remove old and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside cells.
  • Gene expression: There are changes in the function of genes related to longevity and protection against disease. These changes in hormone levels, cell function, and gene expression are responsible for the health benefits of intermittent fasting.

Fasting is an effective way of achieving a healthy body weight.

In a recent year-long study, adults with obesity lost 6% of body weight (approximately 13 pounds) and maintained this weight loss with alternate-day fasting. Studies also support the use of 5:2 and 16:8 for weight loss. After 3-6 months of 5:2 or 16:8, people with obesity decreased body weight by 3 – 7% (8 -15 pounds).

Intermittent fasting can also help reduce the risk of developing heart disease and diabetes. Recent evidence shows that fasting can lower “bad” LDL cholesterol by up 15%, triglycerides by up to 25%, and raise “good” HDL cholesterol by up to 10%. Blood pressure also decreases by 5 -10 mm Hg with various fasting regimens. Reductions in diabetes risk have also been observed during periods of fasting. For instance, intermittent fasting has been shown to lower blood glucose, insulin, and improve insulin sensitivity in people with obesity and pre-diabetes. Reduction in risk for heart disease and diabetes can be attributed to weight loss associated with intermittent fasting.

Researches On Intermittent Fasting

More recently, it’s been shown that intermittent fasting may help slow aging and extend lifespan. In a very recent study conducted at Harvard University, fasting was shown to help keep certain cell components in a “youthful” state, which may in turn improve life expectancy.

More and more scientific evidence shows that fasting is a great way to lower chronic disease risk, slow aging, and achieve healthy body weight.

The Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

  • Fasting simplifies our day by reducing the number of meals you have to prepare.
  • Intermittent fasting helps to live longer. Scientists have known for a long time that restricting calories can lengthen life. Intermittent fasting activates many of the same mechanisms for extending life as calorie restriction.
  • Intermittent fasting may reduce the risk of cancer. A small amount of medical research has indicated that fasting might be helpful in the fight against cancer.
  • Fasting can help to get lean. Fasting puts the body in a fat-burning state that is rarely reached while following a normal eating schedule.
  • Intermittent fasting is much easier than traditional diets. The reason most diets fail is that we don’t follow the diet over the long term. Fasting is a weight loss method that is remarkably easy to stick to long-term.
Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
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  • Aids weight loss.
  • Protects heart health.
  • Improve insulin sensitivity.
  • Protects brain functioning.
  • Inhibits cancer cell growth.
  • Reduce bad cholesterol
  • Reduce aging process
  • Improves metabolism
  • Promotes longevity
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Improves neurodegenerative diseases
  • Normalizes blood pressure
  • Promotes fat loss.
  • Improves cellular regeneration and repair.
  • Improves lipid parameters
  • Reduces inflammation.
  • Improves allergies.

 Safety and Side Effects

Hunger is the main side effect of intermittent fasting. One may also feel weak and our brain may not perform well. This may only be temporary, as it can take some time for our body to adapt to the new meal schedule. If we have a medical condition, we should consult with the doctor before trying intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting has an outstanding safety profile. There is nothing dangerous about not eating for a while if one is healthy and well-nourished.

Avoid Intermittent Fasting, if you have these problems:

  • Diabetes.
  • Blood sugar regulation.
  • Low blood pressure.
  • Take medications.
  • Are underweight.
  • Have a history of eating disorders.
  • A woman who is trying to conceive.
  • Has a history of amenorrhea.
  • Pregnant 
  • Breastfeeding.

People with type 1 diabetes or women who are pregnant or nursing should not try these diets. Children should not try fasting as it may impede their growth. Keep in mind that intermittent fasting is just one option for weight loss. While some people may find fasting easier to stick to than daily calorie restriction, others may not. All in all, people should choose a diet that they can easily incorporate into their lifestyle and stick to long-term.

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There is quite a lot of contrasting findings of intermittent fasting, but the one common message is that more evidence to examine the effects of this method; in particular longer-term human studies. However, current research indicates that intermittent fasting can be an effective method to promote weight loss, so this may be worth considering for some individuals while weighing up the pros and cons of intermittent fasting as discussed in this article.

COMMON ARGUMENTS FOR FASTING DIETS

  • Our ancestors would have had periods of fasting depending on food availability.
  • Some people prefer an ‘all or nothing approach when trying to restrict calories for weight loss compared to a ‘moderation’ approach.
  • Promoters of intermittent fasting report a host of long-term health benefits, such as increased longevity, improved metabolic health, improved weight loss, and a reduction in diseases, e.g. heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

COMMON ARGUMENTS AGAINST FASTING DIET

  • May lead to tiredness, headaches, lack of concentration, and poor mood.
  • May be dangerous if unsupervised by a medical professional depending on the person’s age, medical history, and lifestyle.
  • Not a very balanced approach, potential to interfere with metabolic rate.
  • There was an overall lack of evidence and no significant differences in outcomes found between more moderate daily restriction and this extreme fasting approach.
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Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to the most common questions about intermittent fasting.

Can I Drink Liquids during the Fast?

Yes. Water, Coffee, tea, and other non-caloric beverages are fine to drink during Intermittent fasting. Try to avoid sugar in your coffee. Small amounts of milk or cream will be okay. Coffee can be particularly beneficial during a fast, as it can blunt hunger.

Isn’t It Unhealthy to Skip Breakfast?

No. The problem is that most stereotypical breakfast skippers have unhealthy lifestyles. You make sure to eat healthy food for the rest of the day then the practice will be perfectly healthy.

Can I Take Supplements While Fasting?

Yes. However, keep in mind that some supplements like fat-soluble vitamins may work better when taken with meals.

Can I Work out while Fasted?

Yes, fasted workouts are fine. Some people recommend taking branched-chain amino acids  (BCAAs) before a fasted workout.

Will Fasting Cause Muscle Loss?

All weight loss methods can cause muscle loss, which is why it’s important to lift weights and keep your protein intake high. One study showed that intermittent fasting causes less muscle loss than regular calorie restriction.

Should Kids Fast?

It will be better if you don’t allow our children to do fasting.

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Superfoods – What makes them “Super”?

The word “Superfood” has now turned into a Buzzword. It now seems that every week, we are introduced to a new superfood. But how can we differentiate a food being falsely and deceptively marketed as a “Superfood” from the one which actually is a nutrition superhouse?

Well, for starters, a Superfood is defined as “a nutrient-rich food considered to be especially valuable for health and well-being.” These Superfoods are not only high in micronutrients, but are also powerhouses of essential antioxidants, minerals and healthy fats which are all-important for your body in order to thrive.

Superfoods are often marketed as elusive and exotic foods. However, unlike  “Superman” who was born on the planet Krypton, “Superfoods” are Earth grown, on our very own planet and some are even locally and easily available. You just have to look around! These local superfoods in the yester years were celebrated for their therapeutic, weight loss and wellbeing properties, but are now just undervalued, under promoted and simply lost.

Lets have a look at some of the available Superfoods which provide an amalgamation of different health benefits and rightly have earned themselves the title of “Superfoods”!

Note – These Superfoods need to be incorporated into a well balanced healthy diet in combination with lifestyle changes for them to work optimally. 

Superfood Spices

Turmeric

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Ever regretted saying no to “Haldi wala doodh” or simply put, Turmeric milk, all so lovingly prepared by your grandmother? Well, you should. Turmeric, which is an everyday spice used in various parts of India is not only an  excellent source of Vitamin C, Magnesium, Potassium, and Vitamin B6, but, its two key components , the Circumin and Turmerone also contribute towards its therapeutic properties such as boosting immunity, improving digestion, and have anti inflammatory properties amongst many others. 

Ginger

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Ginger, one of the healthiest spices is commonly used as a home remedy ingredient for treating nausea, indigestion and relieving menstrual cramps because of its powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Several other additional benefits of ginger which will convince you to add Ginger in your everyday cooking are:

  1. Ginger can lower blood sugar levels and improve heart risk factors

  2. Gingerol a substance present in Ginger may prevent cancer

  3. It can help reduce muscle pain and soreness

Garlic

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Garlic which is known as a universal aphrodisiac is rich in Vitamin C, B6, Selenium, Magnesium and Allicin (antioxidant) which renders it effective against high blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases, elevated cholesterol levels and also against ailments like flu and the common cold.

Superfood Fruits

Jackfruit

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The jack of all fruits, the “Jackfruit” which is officially India’s largest fruit is rich in fibre, phenolic compounds, antioxidants and several other nutrients providing numerous health benefits. The interest in Jackfruit internationally has grown multifold because it is considered as a vegan, gluten free and protein rich alternative to meat.

The Jackfruits seeds are rich in protein and aid in healthy blood circulation which is necessary for muscle oxygenation and promoting hair growth.

The phytonutrients present in leaves help boost your immune system. The raw Jackfruit bulbs help in restoring hormonal balance whereas the ripe Jackfruit bulbs are a storehouse of antioxidants and are adequately rich in fiber which helps promote healthy gut motility.

Pineapple

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This tropical potent fruit is rich in powerful phenols and enzymes which reduce inflammation, improve immunity and even address gut issues. The Bromelain present in Pineapples helps promote healing of injuries, slows down blood clotting and helps break protein molecules in the body which helps in gaining lean body mass and thereby in mobilising belly fat. It also helps in curbing appetite and prevents you from bingeing!

Banana

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If you need a quick recharge, then a Banana is all you need as it is packed with nutrients like Potassium, Vitamin B6, fibre, and its low to medium glycemic index which makes it the ultimate snack to have. Bananas are purportedly termed as the “Original” Superfoods since the nutrients present in them help soothe the stomach, strengthen the bones and also help promote relaxation and better mood.

Indian Gooseberry (Amla)

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This popular fruit which is rich in Vitamin C, Iron and Calcium is a Superfood which is not only inexpensive but it also comes with a legion of its own health benefits such as boosting immunity, promoting healthy skin, hair and digestive system as it is also rich in fiber,  great for heart health, reducing inflammation, improving insulin sensitivity of the cells and thereby proving to be beneficial for people with Type II Diabetes.  Amla can be creatively used in the powdered form, as chutneys, pickles or even juices.

Superfood Grains

Millets

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Millets have been recently rejuvenated and are currently in line as the “Go-to” healthy gluten free grains to consume and rightfully so. They are packed with Fiber, essential vitamins  and minerals. There are nine commonly known and grown millet varieties namely Foxtail millet, Little millet, Pearl Millet, Sorghum, Kodo millet, Barnyard millet, Finger millet and Proso millet. Each of these millets have a lower glycemic index than most modern grains and also have their own unique nutrition profile owing to health benefits such as reducing blood sugar levels, satiating hunger, improving immunity and reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Quinoa

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This gluten free pseudo grain is not only a high fiber grain but it is also rich in  high quality protein. In fact it contains more protein than other grains and also has a high profile of Lysine, an amino acid which is responsible for healing sore muscles after an intense workout!

Since Quinoa is also rich in Iron, Manganese, Magnesium and Riboflavin, it provides health benefits such as alleviating migraines, promoting blood sugar control and aiding in tissue growth and repair!

Amaranth

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This forgotten gluten free supergrain is highly nutritious as it contains good amount of proteins, fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants which provide diverse health benefits such as promoting a healthy gut, preventing premature graying of hair, anti-inflammatory properties and regulating muscle and nerve function, blood sugar and blood pressure levels.

Although this pseudo grain generally makes an appearance in the households of those who traditionally fast, its nutrition profile and health benefits should render Amaranth as an often consumed grain!

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13 foods to eat for a glowing skin and healthy hair

Fish

Fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids have extraordinary beauty benefits, including glowing pores and skin and brilliant strands. About three percent of the hair shaft is made up of omega-three fatty acids. They’re observed in mobile membranes on your scalp and within the natural oils that hold your scalp and hair hydrated. While salmon is commonly the celeb choice, Foy says mackerel, sardines, and anchovies are even better. ‘They’re high-quality because they’re at the lowest of the meals chain, so they’re not dwelling for terribly long, which means that pollution like mercury does not gather in them.’

Red Bell Peppers

Did you know that pink peppers contain a way more pores and skin-boosting vitamin C than oranges? ‘Vitamin C is a pre-cursor to collagen production and is also an antioxidant,’ says Dr. Julia Carroll, a dermatologist with Compass Dermatology in Toronto. ‘When light hits your pores and skin, it creates unfastened radicals. These soar around inside your pores and skin and cause DNA damage, which turns into aging.’ The antioxidants connect themselves to loose radicals and neutralize them so they can’t do damage. Loading up on red peppers will help hold your pores and skin younger-looking.

Spinach

Not only does spinach give you strength, however, it’s also a prime anti-ager. According to celebrity nutritionist Kimberly Snyder, creator of The Beauty Detox Foods, it’s rich in beta carotene, which converts into the powerful anti-growing old diet A. This nutrient is vital for allowing right moisture retention to the epidermis, supporting to save you wrinkles and remove useless skin. For top class absorption, pair spinach with a food that’s high in diet C. Try a squeeze of lemon in a home made dressing drizzled over a spinach salad.

Coconut

The water from coconuts is a outstanding herbal hydration aid and consists of potassium, an electrolyte that enables move vitamins into our cells. Coconut oil, which is excessive in healthful fats, vitamins E and K and minerals, is one in all the first-rate natural vitamins on your hair, boosting increase and shine by using moisturizing the scalp. It’s also highly effective in decreasing protein loss when used as a pre-wash conditioning treatment ‘ protein loss can leave strands vulnerable and susceptible to damage. You can also strive swapping vegetable oil for coconut oil when cooking ‘ it has a excessive smoke point, which means that it’s wonderful for high-warmness cooking.

Avocado Oil

We all were given the message about the advantages of consuming whole avocados; now it’s the oil that’s getting all of the attention. Avocados incorporate top quantities of vitamins A, D and E and omega-nine fatty acids ‘ one of the building blocks of healthful pores and skin ‘ which is quite concentrated within the oil. All of these nutrients assist to even out skin tone over the years when delivered to your eating regimen regularly. Avocado oil has a high smoke point, so it’s versatile sufficient to apply whilst sautéing or roasting greens or as a drizzle on a chilly summer season soup.

Eggs

Whether you enjoy them sunnyside up for breakfast or boiled and sliced over a green salad, eggs are critical healthy-hair helpers. One of their key components is sulfur, an important nutrient that facilitates with the whole thing from diet B absorption to liver function (your body’s detox organ). Sulfur is also essential for the manufacturing of collagen and keratin, which help create and keep bright locks, robust nails and sparkling skin.

Garlic

Truly one in all nature’s best medicines, garlic also helps prevent breakouts and keep clear skin. To make the most of its naturally antibiotic compounds, it’s satisfactory to crush or chop garlic and leave it on the slicing board for a few minutes earlier than cooking

Walnuts

These nuts have omega-three and omega-6 fatty acids, which help the body keep moisture, giving your mane a healthy-looking shine. The protein content of the walnuts helps increase hair follicles, making hair fuller and stronger.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are skin care superheroes, defensive you from solar damage way to their high antioxidant content. A recent observe offered at The Royal Society of Medicine in London observed that women who had been given 5 tablespoons of general tomato paste with 10 grams of olive oil each day for 12 weeks showed sizable development in their skin’s ability to shield itself against UV damage.

Pumpkin Seeds

These little wonders are filled with zinc, in addition to vitamins A and K and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which are vital to constructing a healthy hair shaft. They’re also rich in fatty acids and vitamin C, which are important for generating sebum ‘ your skin’s natural oil ‘ to shield and restore skin.

Hemp

Hemp seeds are made from 30 percentage natural protein and a full variety of amino acids and crucial fatty acids wanted to preserve your pores and skin’s structure. You can sprinkle a spoonful on cereal, or use hemp seed oil in dips or upload it in your morning smoothie. According to a study stated inside the Journal of Dermatological Treatment, signs of skin dryness and itching considerably progressed after using hemp seed oil for 20 weeks when eating one to 2 tablespoons a day.

Pineapple

This sweet treat is excessive in diet C and the enzyme bromelain, which is understood to be an powerful pores and skin softener. Drinking pineapple juice and munching on the fruit help the body synthesize collagen, which supports pores and skin structure, whilst vitamin C and amino acids aid in mobile and tissue repair, providing you with a youthful appearance. Add it to your morning smoothie for a refreshing treat.

Oats

They have high quantities of zinc, biotin, magnesium, and potassium a deficiency in those key nutrients can cause extra brittle hair and more breakage.

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Health or Success: What should be the priority?

How many times have you dashed out in the morning missing your breakfast because you were late for a meeting? Or how many times have you let your adolescent kid get away with store-bought junk food instead of a healthy meal because you just didn’t have the time to spend in the kitchen? Can you count the number of cups of coffee you’ve gulped in the office because you were stressed from work?

A small introspection into the pattern of life we lead today will reveal a simple but shocking truth: this generation prioritizes work, career, money and materialistic success over health.

The great poet Virgil once said, “The greatest wealth is health.” But it’s all in the textbooks now. Because the biggest reason we give ourselves to justify our obsession with materialism is that it is only temporary. “I will cut down on the coffee once this project is over.” “I will start having breakfast everyday once I get that promotion I’m working so hard for.” Or, “I will cook and serve my kids a balanced meal when I don’t have to do two shifts at work and when I have saved enough money.” But is it ever enough? Is there really an end to all the material validation that we seek? Is this condition really temporary?

The answer is a simple no. This rat race for wealth and success is an obsession that plagues the whole generation and one which never stops until the first major cardiac arrest or when the blood test yields a positive result of diabetes. That is when you realize how many opportunities of leading a well balanced life you have missed.

Here are a few ways our materialistic obsession has impacted our health:

  1. Working longer hours means being in stressed conditions for a longer period
  2. Excessive workload harms the work-life balance of the individual, thus preventing a wholesome life
  3. Working indoors for too long also amounts to longer hours of a sedentary lifestyle on a daily basis
  4. Prioritizing work often leads to sacrificing of important daily activities like:
  5. Timely meals
  6. Regular exercise
  • Pursuing of leisure activities and hobbies
  1. Spending quality time with friends and family
  2. A deficiency in time also leads to choice of unhealthy packaged and junk food on a regular basis
  3. A constant want for and pursuit of more is also linked with mental illnesses like depression

According to World Health Organization, “Most of the world’s population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight.”

It also asserts that “worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980”, that is, shortly after we stepped into the digital age, which has been responsible in bringing a significant change in the modern work system. (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/)

It is no news that obesity is largely fostered by unhealthy, irresponsible lifestyle choices. Which in turn is encouraged by our modern day madness over materialistic gains. Sure, it is important to keep up with the fast-moving world of today, but it is equally important to partake in the rich experiences that you work hard for in the first place. Know for a fact that the means of earning your wellbeing cannot be of a greater priority that your wellbeing itself.

Interestingly, small changes integrated into the daily lifestyle have a major impact on the greater wellbeing. Here are a few pointers on achieving a healthy work-life balance:

Make a schedule and follow it to the best of your abilities: This is perhaps the most important. When you go about your day without a schedule, you tend to overwork because work has a tendency to appear urgent and important. Careful scheduling however helps you secure enough time for other healthy activities and you know exactly when to stop working.

Do the 7-minute exercise everyday: Whoever came up with that idea did a favour to all the overworked souls who complain they don’t have enough time for exercise. But when it’s only a matter of 7 minutes, it’s easier to comply and commit. Nevertheless, starting off the day with those few minutes of exercise has a profoundly positive effect on your health.

Eat clean and on time: If your main source of diet is a lot of packaged, fried or fast food, back off immediately. Unhealthy food has the worst irreversible impact on your body. Practice healthy habits like carrying your lunch to work and stocking your kitchen with healthy snack options like fresh fruits, nuts, seeds, yogurt, milk, etc. Also important is to include meal times in the afore-mentioned schedule and stick to it religiously.

Never miss breakfast: The most important meal of the day. If you are typically always rushing to work and don’t have the time for a cereal-milk-fruits routine, try whizzing up a breakfast smoothie. What’s more, you can also carry some extra smoothie to work as a snacking option. Check out our Blueberry Peach smoothie recipe here (https://foodnwellness.com/blueberry-peach-smoothie/)

Spend some time on hobbies that do not entail work or responsibilities: Listening to music, reading, or even playing with your pets help wind down the work stress. Spending time with your favorite people is also a huge stress buster. Connect with your family and for a change, take genuine interest in their life happenings to build strong bonds as well as to leave your work tangles behind.

Consult an expert on a regular basis: The whirlwind lifestyle of today does take a toll on health at some point. Which is why it is important to regularly visit someone who can help with expert knowledge on the same. A professional doctor or a certified nutritionist is your best confidant in this case.

Start and end the day with gratitude: No matter how much we achieve, it will never seem to be enough unless we treasure what we already have. Be aware of all your possessions and be grateful for them. Practice your gratitude before you begin and end each day by either making a mental note or jotting them down on paper. Successful people around the world like Oprah Winfrey, Sir Richard Branson, and Tim Ferriss attribute their success to this simple habit.

 

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What is the definition of a healthy diet?

Pretty Simple – Mix of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, plus enough vitamins and minerals for optimal health. Science says that some of the food choices within these categories are better than others.

Are there foods you never should eat? Nothing really. If you crave an ice cream sundae occasionally, have a small one. But don’t make it a daily event. Set off the samosas at parties with healthier snacks at home. Healthy eating making right food choice most of the time.

Nutrition scientists have compiled the following list of foods you should keep to a minimum. Research suggests that eating these foods regularly can create the onset of life-threatening illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and even some cancers.

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White carbohydrates. Bread, pasta, rice, cookies, cake — are best had in the whole-grain versions.
Added sugar. Irrespective of Whether it’s white granulated sugar, brown sugar, high- fructose corn syrup, corn sugar, or honey, sugar contains almost no nutrients and is pure carbohydrate. When we are eating a lot of sugar you are filling up on empty calories, causing our blood sugar to rise and fall like a roller coaster.

Research has proven that soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages are the primary source of added sugar in all our diets and a major contributor to weight gain.

Dairy fat. Ice cream, whole milk, and cheese are full of saturated fat and some naturally occurring trans-fat and therefore can increase the risk of the health problems, notably heart disease. The healthiest milk and milk products are low-fat versions, such as skim milk, milk with 1% fat and reduced-fat cheeses.

Baked sweets. Cookies, snack cakes, doughnuts, pastries, and many other treats are so tempting and we can’t but hog on them, but these commercially prepared versions are packed with processed carbohydrates, added sugar, unhealthy fats, and salt.

Dietary guidelines and the American Heart Association recommend reducing sodium to 1,500 mg per day and not exceeding 2,300 mg per day. But most of us get 1½ teaspoons (or 8,500 mg) of salt daily. That translates to about 3,400 mg of daily sodium. Our body needs a certain amount of sodium, but too much can increase blood pressure and the risk of heart disease and stroke.

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Time to understand the complications of belly fat, stubborn tummies and pot bellies.

Are you struggling with Round or stubborn tummies. It’s time to take measures to reduce it or else risk metabolic complications, increased risk of cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes. In women, it is also associated with breast cancer and the need for gallbladder surgery. Belly fat lies deep inside the abdomen and is very stubborn in nature having been deposited for a long period of time.

Just do the simple measurement of your waistline and find out where you are. The higher the number, the greater the danger your tummy poses to your health.
• For women, a waist measurement of 35 inches or more is cause for concern.
• For men, a waist measurement of 40 inches or more could spell trouble.

The researchers say that normal-weight adults with central obesity are at two times the risk of dying earlier than individuals who are either obese or overweight. Based on the study results, the researchers have stressed the importance of adopting an active lifestyle and eating the right diet to prevent fat from accumulating around the belly.

Abdominal fats or stubborn tummies can be controlled through a mix of moderate exercise and proper dietary control. Daily physical activity of 30 to 60 minutes is a must along with correct diet. As a thumb rule, reduce fruit juice and carbonated drinks, take in complex carbs, green vegetables and reduce sugar in take.

Food n Wellness, provides wellness solutions for managing the problem with correct diet prescription and exercise routines tailor made for you. It’s time to be conscious and start taking measures to control our body or else the doctor takes charge of our bodies.

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When do we consult a Nutritionist & Dietitian

You’re overweight but healthy.

If you’re technically overweight, but your physician says you’re healthy, the question is: How do you feel about yourself? If you’re happy with the way you look and feel, then don’t call a dietitian. But if you’re not happy with your image in the mirror, consider calling someone who can help you lose weight in a healthy manner.

You’re underweight and want to gain weight.

Gaining weight in a healthy manner can be difficult, and You don’t want to simply load up on bad fats, sugars and empty calories. If you don’t know how to gain weight in a healthy way, consider seeing a dietitian. She can show you how to incorporate healthy fats and nutrient-dense, high-quality foods to encourage healthy weight gain that will keep you energized.

Want to lose weight in a healthy manner.

There are plethora of weight loss tools available on the internet and some fad diets like low carb etc etc to get to optimum weight. If the above have not worked for you, its time to see a dietitian to help you reach your goals with a customized plan.

You’re working out, but not seeing results.

A lot of men/ women work out every day but don’t know how to fuel their bodies properly, which means they won’t see optimal results, like weight loss or increased muscle tone. If you’re not seeing results from exercise and you’re eating healthily, call a dietitian/nutritionist to find out what you’re missing in your diet.

Recently been diagnosed with a food allergy, sensitivity or other related medical condition.

Most doctors don’t give enough nutritional information to show you how to live a full life with a newly diagnosed food allergy or sensitivity. Gluten sensitivities, celiac disease, diabetes, high cholesterol or lactose intolerance, thyroid disorder are very common. A dietitian/nutritionist can show you how to incorporate new foods and substitutes into your lifestyle so you can be healthy and eat well, even within a restricted diet.

You’re pregnant.

If you’re pregnant and feel like you don’t have a good sense about how to eat well or properly nourish yourself, consider seeing a dietitian. If you gain too much weight during pregnancy, you’re at risk for developing gestational diabetes and high blood pressure, which can be dangerous. Many women feel like pregnancy is an excuse to go to town and eat loads of junk, but trust me, If you gain 20-30 kilos instead of 10-15, it will be even more of a struggle to lose that weight after the baby is born.

You’re having fertility issues.

If you’re not in optimal health, it could affect your fertility. If you don’t feel healthy or eat well, and you’re experiencing difficulty getting pregnant, consider calling a dietitian to learn how to better nourish yourself.

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Obesity worldwide

Worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980. In 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight. Of these over 600 million were obese. 39% of adults aged 18 years and over were overweight in 2014, and 13% were obese. Most of the world’s population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight. 42 million children under the age of 5 were overweight or obese in 2013.

9 out of 10 people with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes are overweight. If you are overweight, losing some weight could help you better manage your diabetes.Obesity is preventable.

The fundamental cause of obesity and overweight is an energy imbalance between calories consumed and calories spent.

Are we among the above or some of our near and dear ones among the above. If yes, then what are we doing about it. It is good to be busy, but it is a not a great idea to be busy now and regret later in life. The diseases that come with being overweight are irreversible. No amount of money can get us back to our old healthier self.

It is high time for us to become aware of if we are within the healthy weight zone or, overweight. Overweight and obesity are both extremely dangerous and lead to some serious health issues like

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· High blood pressure (Hypertension)
· High Cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides (Dyslipidemia)
· Type 2 diabetes
· Coronary heart disease
· Stroke
· Osteoarthritis (a breakdown of cartilage and bone within a joint)
· Sleep apnea and breathing problems
· Some cancers (endometrial, breast, colon, kidney, gallbladder, and liver)
· Low quality of life
· Mental illness such as clinical depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders.
· Body pain and difficulty with physical functioning.

We all have either made half- hearted attempts to bring our body weight within the healthy zone or a minimum risk zone, with various degree of success. It is not a great idea not to care about our body, as we risk taking body into a critical ailment zone. If we don’t take care of it or even start thinking of now, we may land up some of above ailments and then taking medical treatment or a starvation – diet treatment.
None of these 2 options are great for us, as we will be forced to accept change in our lifestyles.
Food and Wellness works with clients to be able to understand the root causes of excess weight and customizes diet plans providing the best achievable solution over a reasonable time span. Its time for specialised health care for your body as each of us are unique. What works for me may not work for others.

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Gout or Gouty Arthritis : On an alarming rise

Gouty arthritis might not be an ailment that has been talked about as much as say, Diabetes, Obesity or Cancers, but it has been something man has been living with since ages. From King Louis XIV of France to Queen Anne of England to Sir Robert Walpole, Britain’s first Prime Minister—victims of gout were as commonplace then as it is now.

What is Gout and what causes it?

Simply put, Gout is a form of arthritis and is caused by an accumulation of excess uric acid in the bloodstream. Uric acid has no useful function in the human body and is a byproduct of the breakdown of a group of chemicals called purines, a basic building block of DNA, present body tissues and also in many foods. Accumulation of uric acid on its own is not a harmful affair and elevated levels of uric acid do not necessarily ensure a gout attack. However, when the excess levels of uric acid form hard crystals that get deposited in joints, tendons, and other tissues, the patient experiences intense pain in those areas.

Signs and symptoms

The most common manifestation of gout is acute arthritis, or severe pain in joints. Usually, the metatarsal-phalangeal joint, which is at the base of the big toe, is most commonly affected by gout, accounting for almost 50% of the cases. Other areas prone to attack include the forefoot, instep, heel, ankle, and knee. The attack typically begins abruptly, often at night, and the pain is accompanied by swelling and redness in the affected area. Sometimes, the intensity of the pain can cause other ailments like fever, flu or muscle aches.

A man’s disease

Although all humans are at risk of gout, it is mostly seen in men past adolescence. It is rarely seen in women before menopause, as estrogen protects women from developing gout until after menopause when the estrogen levels fall.

You are also prone to gout if your family holds a history of an affected. Your medical history such as if you have undergone an organ transplant, or regularly take medicines such as diuretics, aspirin, cyclosporine, or levodopa, the vitamin niacin, also increase your risk of being affected.

Gout left untreated usually increases the frequency of attacks, and over time, uric acid crystals form gritty, chalky nodules called tophi, that may need to be surgically removed. Further neglect of gout could also result in serious issues such as joint deformity, kidney stones (formed by the same urate crystals), and as a result kidney disease and kidney failure.

What to do in the middle of an attack

  • Rest the affected joint in an elevated position until the bout of pain reduces.
  • Use ice compression to ease the discomfort and reduce the swelling.
  • For pain relief, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs could be taken; however, avoid drugs like aspirin that are high in purines.
  • Do not neglect gout attacks for too long. Consult a rheumatologist and get a joint fluid analysis done before the problem gets recurrent.

Watch what you eat

Gouty arthritis also affects overweight people or those who have weight-related health issues including diabetes and high blood pressure or cholesterol. Dietary causes also account for about 12% of gout. Alcoholic drinks, especially beer, and organ meats such as liver and seafood and oily sea fish like anchovies and sardines, are high in purines. Therefore it is of utmost importance to maintain a general healthy and balanced diet and an effective exercise routine to keep body weight in control throughout the year, so as to reduce the chances of painful gout attacks.

Consulting a certified nutritionist is mandatory so as to have a clear knowledge of which foods to avoid or eat in moderation that would address the requirement of maintaining a healthy weight, yet that are not high in purines.

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Gluten Allergy or Gluten Intolerance

A gluten allergy is caused by gliadin, a glycoprotein that, along with glutenin (another protein), helps to form the gluten protein. Gluten is found in wheat and other related grains such as barley, oats, and rye. Gliadin is also one of the major allergens associated with wheat allergies and a trigger for celiac disease, a serious autoimmune disorder of the small intestine.

“Gluten Intolerance” is the term used to refer to the entire category of gluten issues: Celiac Disease, Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity and Wheat Allergy.

Celiac disease is an inherited autoimmune disorder that affects the digestive process of the small intestine.

Celiac disease is a problem with digesting gluten.

Symptoms of a gluten allergy are often similar to those in celiac disease and may include Abdominal pain, Diarrhea, Constipation, Fatigue, Heartburn, Bloating, Anxiety and Anemia.

Additional symptoms of a gluten allergy may include:

  • trouble breathing
  • ulcers in the mouth
  • asthma
  • depression
  • osteoporosis
  • weight loss
  • rash
  • swelling of the lips
  • irritability
  • anaphylaxis (in extreme cases)

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