It's not always that simple to find a reliable health guide these days to point us in the right direction to some of the fundamentals in maintaining a healthy lifestyle be it home or while you're on the go. Whether it's saying no to junk food, getting more fruit and vegetables into our diets, eating enough fibre foods, finding time to exercise or even giving up on red meat. We need to step back for a moment and reflect on where we go next. Unlike days gone by, we now live in a fast-paced world with little time to look after the most important aspects of our lives.
There's far to much stress and strife to deal with and we have to take extra care to avoid even some of the most common illnesses we face daily. As I write more articles on health and happiness, I'm finding some that need addressing more than others. Please feel free to browse some of my health and travel stories on my site in more detail. While you may find some that will excite you, others may shock you.
I'll try my best to find as many reasonable solutions as I possibly can. Because of my extensive knowledge on vegetarianism let's get going with some of the reasons why fruit and vegetables are extremely important for our health. I hope that this short health guide will greatly help you maintain a sustainable and happier lifestyle.
It may be old hat that fruit and vegetable are good for optimum health but there's a good reason for all of us to get at least five servings a day. Did you know that high levels of micro-nutrients found in many fruits and vegetables are less likely to develop breast cancer in women? Carotenoids - micro-nutrients in carrots, spinach, tomatoes, peppers and sweet potatoes have been found to inhibit the growth of tumours especially in ER-negative breast cancers. That is, tumours not reliant on oestrogen for growth. They also help reduce the spread of breast cancers. There have been extensive studies on the link between carotenoid levels and breast cancer. Below are some of the best fruits and vegetables you can eat for not only keeping cancer at bay but also other diseases too.
Getting enough fibre in your diet is good for your gut and heart health and reduces your risk of obesity. Foods high in fibre (5 grammes or more a serving) include quinoa, split peas, lentils, oat bran, dates, prunes, and high-fibre cereals. To make sure you get the recommended 25 grammes a day see my article on Fibre-Rich foods.
Mini exercises should do the trick to stay both healthy and trim. You don't have to run for kilometres or climb mountains to exercise. Scores of mini-exercises are just as effective. For instance, you could walk for 10 minutes a day. You won't only feel fitter. Later you'll also have enough energy for longer walks which will help you burn more kilojoules.
If you're going to a mall, park your car as far away as possible and walk to the shops. This will build your confidence so that you can take on longer distances later and progressively fitter. Before getting out of the bed in the morning, do 10 light stomach exercises while lying flat. Do more every day until you reach an amount that you feel happy with. Fifteen minutes of moderate exercise a day could add up to three years to your life.
Did you know that green tea could be good for your eyes! Studies have shown that antioxidants in green tea are absorbed deep into the eyes and protects them from disease. Antioxidants are natural chemicals that neutralise free radicals, the potentially dangerous molecules that have been linked to disease. Green tea is rich in antioxidants and has many other health benefits too like helping to fight off cancer.
Do you have small children who turn up their noses at vegetables? I'm sure you do. Try this approach for fast results. Give them their meals and snacks at the same time each day and make sure they have no treats or drinks besides water in the hour before they eat. Get them to sit at the table for meals, preferably with the rest of the family and say no to distractions such as mobile phones, toys or television. I know, this is not going to be easy.
A fun way to introduce toddlers to new vegetables is to take them along when you buy veggies and get them to help prepare and cook them. Combine new foods with something they're already familiar with and disguise the unpopular veg in other food. For instance by mashing beans with potato. Presentation is also important, so cut the food into attractive shapes and your child may be more inclined to eat it. You have nothing to lose if you don't try.
Are you becoming more impatient for instance when waiting for a call or an email? Chances are junk food could be to blame. Originally junk food was meant to provide us with a fast meal that didn't take too much time out our busy day. Like so many other technological innovations it allows us to save time. But ironically it also reminds us how we spend our time and makes us feel more impatient. The conclusion is that our impatience spoils activities we should find relaxing.
And if you're a man and keen to have kids one day it's a good idea to cut down on processed and junk foods. Tucking into foods such as takeaway chicken, hamburgers and chips which are high in kilojoules and trans fat, could increase your risk of becoming infertile. Men who eat mostly plant-based foods have better sperm movement compared with those who live on unhealthy food. The sperm of many junk food eaters is found to be less likely to survive the journey to fertilise an egg.
Fast food could very easily lead to asthma and children who eat three or more burgers a week have a 40 per cent higher risk of developing asthma than kids who eat fewer burgers or no burgers at all. Asthma risk is lower in kids whose diet consist of fruit, vegetables and fish because the antioxidants in them have anti-inflammatory properties. The saturated fat in burgers is specifically found to promote asthma-related breathing problems.
Did you know that eating a lot of red meat could increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes? If you eat just 100 grammes of red meat such as steak each day you'll be almost 20 per cent more at risk of contracting type 2 diabetes than vegans and vegetarians who eat no red meat at all. If you consume just 50 grammes a day of processed meat such as two slices of bacon or one Vienna sausage, for example, you'll have a 50 per cent higher risk. Rather say no to red meat altogether. You'll be a lot healthier and your body will love you for it.
Most of us can't imagine skipping that first cup of coffee whether in the morning of at work After all, it's what kick starts our day, right? Wrong. Studies have shown that coffee drinkers are no more alert than non-coffee drinkers. The caffeine "high" most people experience is simply the body's reaction to getting what it craves.
Coffee drinkers develop a tolerance for the stimulating effects of caffeine and that early morning cup simply reverses the effects of caffeine withdrawal (which causes fatigue) Rather choose an alternative because too much coffee raises blood pressure and causes increased anxiety. If you can't live without it, try not to drink more than a couple of cups a day.
Please take note that the information on this site is designed for educational purposes and is intended solely for a general readership. The contents herein are not intended to offer any personal medical advice or to diagnose any health issues you may have. This information is also by no means a substitute for medical care by a licensed healthcare provider. For that, you'd need to consult your medical doctor or a health care practitioner for any advice should you require prescription medication.