Tired of old boring gym routine? The 6 simple ways listed below can help you stay healthy and in shape through 2014.
- Eat breakfast – Ensure you have a substantial breakfast which includes some protein and fat, and aim to eat it within an hour of getting up.
This will help your body to maintain balanced blood sugar levels and that’s key in order to reduce your cravings.
And do yourself a big favour, skip the fruit juice – it plays havoc with your blood sugar levels.
- Get active – Find an activity that you enjoy and actually look forward to, such as cycling, dancing, running or yoga – and do it twice a week.
Current research suggests sitting for long periods can increase the risk of heart disease, weight gain and diabetes, so if you’re office based ensure you get up several times a day and take a walk. For example, instead of using the elevator, use the stairs; if you are chauffeur driven, get off the car some miles away before you get home and take a walk. Dancing is also fun, you could dance within the comfort of your home – the important thing is that we stay active and on the move.
- Protein – Include some with all meals and snacks: think eggs, chicken, fish, pulses, nuts and seeds, approximately the size of your palm.
This will slow down the insulin response and help keep your weight stable.
- Get into green tea – Replace some of your tea and coffee with green tea. It is rich in polyphenols, a powerful antioxidant that will not only help to keep you healthy but may also slow down the ageing process as may encourage faster metabolism.
Start with two cups a day and experiment by adding fresh mint and a slice of lemon.
- Eat your way to slim by cutting back on carbohydrates such as potatoes, rice, pasta, bread, biscuits – and ensure you load your plate up with healthy seasonal vegetables instead.
Make them interesting by stir-frying, sautéing, baking in the oven, adding garlic and chilli – whatever works for you.
- One final tip… Include mushrooms in your diet. They contain powerful compounds called beta glucans which have long been studied for their immune enhancing properties
- You have to be realistic – Rome wasn’t built in a day. A healthy approach is to aim to improve on yesterday. By repeating this process you will start to feel like you have made great improvements over a course of weeks, months and years. The great Greek philosopher Aristotle was apt when he said:
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
The suggestions above are tested and proven. Amanda Ryder, Sandra Lackenby and Garry Kerr, Cambridge food and fitness experts couldn’t agree more. In addition, from our experience, taking green tea, cutting down on all the fave Nigerian staples (bread, rice, pasta, etc) and the popular artificial juice and eating lots of vegetables will help maintain a balanced weight and can aid weight loss.
Research also tells us that Food is 90% of the health and fitness battle. You can make great changes just through making small adjustments to your eating habits alone. By eating a regular mix of proteins, fats and carbohydrates you will reap the benefits of a slimmer and healthier you.
Each of us can work towards a healthier us. And there are many great benefits of being healthy – these include having more energy, easier breathing, better sleep, reduced risk of cancers, more stamina, lower risk of heart disease and of type two diabetes.
As always, we will like to read from you – tell us what works for you and what doesn’t so others can learn from your experience.
Cheers to a happier and healthier you in 2014.