We are in the first month of New Year and many of us have already started working on our resolutions, hoping that they will stick to their promises for the entire year. One big resolution is to take care of our health. However, rather than making extreme changes, let’s look at taking baby steps to improve our health day by day. Today, we will discuss a few basic lifestyle changes that everyone can make to reach their health goals slowly and gradually.
Fibre in the form of fruits and veggies is a must in your health routine. It is important to consume at least one fruit in the first half of the day and add more raw or cooked salad in your meal to get fibre and antioxidants to improve gut health. This multi-colour food is loaded with digestive enzymes, which helps overcome bloating, acidity, constipation, etc.
Try to add cooked cruciferous vegetables at least two or three times a week in your meal because these are known to be powerful veggies as they are loaded with fibre, folate, vitamin C, E, K and other minerals. Most importantly, crucifers are rich in glutathione, which is known as the ‘master antioxidant’ of our body since it has very high free-radical scavenging properties.
Cruciferous vegetables are nutrient-dense sources of phytochemicals called isothiocyanates that are linked to cancer prevention. In addition, cabbage and broccoli contain sulforaphanes and indoles; these are strong antioxidants and simulators that help detoxify and protect our liver.
Limit your consumption of bad carbohydrates such as sugar, refined flour, packaged food, other processed foods, and aerated drinks to a maximum of twice a week. Enjoy your rewards in moderation and include healthy unprocessed carbohydrates like whole-grain and pulses.
Be careful with bad fats that go in your body, especially trans-fat-containing foods like commercially baked sweets, cookies, pastries, doughnuts, cakes, packaged snacks like chips and crackers, vegetable shortening, stick margarine, candy bars, repeated use of the same oil for frying, etc. All these foods add toxins in the body and put pressure on the liver and the heart. Have these foods, if you must, in absolute moderation.
Switch to only cold-pressed or unrefined oils for cooking. Refined oils increase inflammation in the body as these oils are oxidised and have no nutritional value. Cold-pressed oils hold all their nutrients intact.
Replace refined sugar with healthy and natural sugar substitutes like raw organic honey, jaggery, coconut sugar, Stevia, etc. You can then enjoy your sweets in moderation without any guilt because processed sugar is harmful for the body as it keeps the body acidic, adds inflammation and affects the protein fibre in the body — which can accelerate the ageing process.
Drink at least three litres of water on a regular basis to flush out toxins from the body and start with a minimum 30 minutes of exercise, which could be walking, jogging, running, cardio, aerobics, zumba, etc. Make sure you move around throughout the day to improve the blood circulation, which keeps