Founder & CEO, POPxo
We are constantly bombarded with so many health tips that it all becomes a confusing conundrum. Make 2015 the year that you go back to the basics and form habits for a healthy, happy life.
You did not pile on the kilos in a week. You definitely are NOT going to lose them in a hurry.So forget following any diet that claims you can. Eat well, exercise hard.
This is not a faddish suggestion. Sugar - especially the granulated kind - is bad for you. It plays havoc with your insulin levels. The more you eat it, the more you crave it. It’s like a drug. Indulge your sweet tooth with fresh fruit. Grab a small handful of nuts while eating fruit - this helps stabilize the insulin spike.
This is a sensible thing to do. Read the labels - if it has E numbers (additives) or chemical-compound sounding ingredients, don’t buy it. Freshly made stuff is the best. If it was made in a factory, treat it with caution.
It’s a good way to get their goodness. Vegetables have kind of gone out of fashion, the focus has been on eating more protein. Make sure you are having a wide variety of veggies. They are full of vitamins and minerals your body needs for healthy functioning.
This should be your fitness goal. Running, cycling, swimming - whatever gets your heart pumping is great. This also strips the body of excess fats. HIIT (high interval training) is also very effective. Run all out for as long as you can, then slow down to catch your breath, and then repeat.
And, no, it does not make you bulky. Learn the correct technique and lift. It builds muscle. More muscle means your body burns more calories even while resting - win-win!
Yoga, pilates - whatever you like. Try and do it at least twice a week. It keeps you limber.
We are talking about bread, rice, pasta. They are refined to the point where all the goodness has been leached out. Then vitamins are added back to “fortify” them. Stick to the whole-grain “brown” versions.
For the longest time, fats were the baddies. Not so any more. Coconut oil, olive oil, avocados, nuts, even ghee - in moderation, are all good for you.
Protein is important. Most of us overdo it. Red meat has been linked to cancer. Check the mercury levels in the fish you regularly eat. Worry about where the meat you eat comes from. Animals are shot up with a cocktail of hormones to make them yield more meat. Choose the organic versions. Try and have meat-free days. Beans, quinoa, lentils - there are lots of good vegetarian protein sources that you can opt for.
You can buy a supplement for pretty much everything. Get the bulk of your nutrition with food. Add a good multivitamin as insurance (I love Vitabiotics ). Essential fatty acids are also a good supplement to take.
Personally, I believe it’s better to avoid it. It’s very easy to make nut milks - from almonds or cashew - and use them as a good dairy substitute.
We are laden with so many neuroses about food. It’s time we took a step back to enjoy it. A weekly cheat meal will make you lose weight more easily. Plan your meals - learn how to cook well and relish what you eat.
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