As more and more awareness has spread about these problems, there’s been a surge in the number of people looking to become fit and keep slim. There are several fitness products in the markets, ranging from equipment to health drinks, magic teas to calorie-monitoring devices and gadgets etc. There’s an even larger content available on the internet on how to remain fit. While having number of options is always a good thing, with so many choices, it’s easy to get lost!
Key Aspects for Achieving and Maintaining a Healthy Body.
Most of the available products as well as online articles focus on either diet, exercises or the lifestyle. There are a few that may combine any two of these aspects. However, science has proved that all of these have a specific role in maintaining good health and a slim body. Following a good diet will have no or limited impact on your body, if you don’t do regular exercise and vice versa.
Having a healthy lifestyle, on its own won’t work wonders, if you’re consuming unhealthy food and/or not exercising. Therefore, a healthy lifestyle, a well planned exercise regime and a balanced diet are important to keep slim and fit. In this article, we’ll have a look into all the three aspects to give you a clear and comprehensive understanding of how you can get fit. So, read on and get that fit and slim body that you’ve always desired to have!
Balanced Diet – The Starting Point.
The old adage ‘You’re what you eat’ has a very deep and pertinent meaning. It has a scientific backing and implies that your body is constituted of whatever you consume. Before having a look at what to eat and what to avoid eating, you must learn to eat only as much as your body needs.
When you’re eating, your body gives a signal when it’s satisfied; most people tend to overeat to satisfy their desire, rather than to satiate their hunger. This is where the problem lies and you can make a big difference by simply controlling this urge of overeating! In the following sections, you’ll find some important Dos and Don’ts of dietary habits :-
Things You Must Eat.
In order to maintain good health, you must ensure that your body is well nourished. It’s important to see that you get the essential nutrients needed for your daily sustenance. Inclusion of the following items in your diet will not only provide a balanced nutrition for your body, but will even help you lose excess fat to attain a slim body :
Items Rich in Leaner Proteins
When you consume a high portion of proteins as part of your diet, your body remains satisfied for a longer duration. You’ll not feel hungry very soon as they’re slower to digest and keep your stomach full. Eggs, low fat dairy items, lean beef, legumes, poultry, seafood, tofu etc are examples of food products rich in lean proteins. About 2-3 servings of dairy products and 2-6 ounces of meat etc may be distributed throughout your daily meals.
Fibrous Grains and Slow Releasing Carbs
Always choose whole grains over refined ones to get an extra dose of minerals and vitamins. The fibers also assist in digestion. Go for brown rice, whole wheat pasta, wheat breads instead of their processed alternatives. The refined grains and products made from them not only lack nutrients, but are faster to digest; this makes you hungry more often. However, don’t panic if you eat the refined products once in a while, they’ll not hurt you! Having 3-8 servings of grains daily based on your age and level of activity is generally adequate.
Vitamin Rich Fruits and Veggies
Snacking on fruits and vegetables is one of the best ways to provide your body with the requisite nutrients while reducing the calories intake. The fibers in veggies and fruits not only keep you full for longer, but provide the essential vitamins to your body. Try having fresh veggie dips and fruits as midday or evening snacks instead of unhealthy fried snacks. Flash-frozen fruits are a good alternative, if you can’t get fresh fruits. A couple of cups (250 grams) of fruits and 1-3 cups (150-450 grams) of veggies are normally sufficient for your daily needs.
Things You Should Avoid Eating
In general, your body burns carbohydrates for obtaining energy, while the excess fat keeps getting stored making you unhealthy. By reducing carbs intake, you not only force your metabolism to burn the stored fat, but also feel less hungry. A low-carb diet even lowers your insulin level in your body, thereby making your kidneys give away the stored water and sodium.
A scientific study has revealed that women who followed such a diet were able to reduce about 10 pounds within the first week. However, this is a short-term weight loss technique; in order to have a sustained effect, you must avoid eating the following products :
Sugary beverages such as bottled drinks are undoubtedly one of the most unhealthy items that you can ever get. The huge amount of calories that they contain neither get utilized nor make you satisfied. These calories only contribute to your excess weight! If you’re serious about becoming slim, they’re A BIG NO!
Potato Chips and French Fries
Although potatoes are healthy when consumed as vegetables, their Avatar as chips and fries are highly unhealthy. They’re not only packed with calories, addictive (which means you end up eating much more than needed), but don’t satisfy your hunger. Therefore, they cause immense amount of weight gain. Fried, roasted and baked potatoes are even known to contain acrylamides, which can cause cancer. In order to achieve your fitness goals, it’s important to completely ban them from your diet!
Although it might sound absurd, it’s true! Fruit juices aren’t good for your health. Most packaged fruit juices available in the market are processed and contain heavy doses of sugar; some even have harmful conservatives. Moreover, besides being easy to consume, a fruit juice lacks fibers and therefore don’t aid digestion. You should avoid having fruit juices as much as possible; eat whole fruits instead!
Exercising – The Vital Link for Weight Loss.
While controlling your diet is important to ensure that you eat what’s essential and avoid harmful foods, you can’t get into your perfect body shape without adequate exercises. We strongly recommend you to have a good exercise regime and follow it religiously. Joining the gym can give you the required motivation and enable you to maintain a regular schedule. However, it’s possible to do exercises even without taking a gym membership!
In subsequent paragraphs, you’ll find some of the most effective exercises for weight loss. If you follow these exercises, we’re sure that you’ll be able to achieve your goals. Number of repetitions and sets will depend on your physical state. Try to push yourself to do a little more than you comfortably do. Following are a few exercises that you must include in your daily routine
Ever wondered, why the Army personnel remain fit? Running is a daily routine for most Armed Forces. It’s a time-tested way to maintain a slim body, as it sheds away the excess fat on a regular basis. There more you run, the more you sweat and the more you lose those extra inches! Yes, it’s as simple as that. However, in order to have a toned body, it’s important to include other exercises too.
These are one of the simplest, yet most effective weight-loss exercises and target your core and shoulders in addition to back and legs. Just stand straight with your arms at the sides, bend forward and squat. Now placing your hands on the ground, kick your legs back to get into a plank. Pull your legs back under your body and jump up. That’s it! Sounds easy, doesn’t it? But they’re great in quick fat burning.
Stand in the burpees position; squat so that your knees get parallel to the ground with your buttocks are in sitting posture. Now, jump off the ground, while lifting your arms above your head. Land back on the floor in semi-squat position; remember to keep your knees soft to avoid a jerk.
Apart from being an excellent weight loss exercise, swimming has several other benefits. It can help your body fight heart attacks, stroke, type 2 diabetes etc. It engages all your muscles and provides a great workout to your cardiovascular system. Swimming is a special exercise, which burns calories while being relaxing too!
Almost all of us have done rope skipping in our childhood. It puts your entire body to work and is therefore extremely effective as a weight loss exercise. Just 10 minutes of intense rope skipping is as good as running one km in eight minutes
Having a Healthy Lifestyle
This is perhaps the easiest to achieve, yet the most neglected aspect of maintaining a healthy and slim body. It’s simple because all you need to do is to make a few changes to your daily routine. In order to become fit and maintain your fitness, some of the important habits that you should inculcate in your lifestyle are :
Get Adequate Sleep
As per the doctors, most people need between seven to nine hours of sleep at night. If you deprive yourself of the necessary sleep, your metabolism goes for a six! Not only that, a sleepy person tends to eat more. You must establish a nighttime routine for yourself and switch off all other distractions. Take a warm bath, read and go off to sleep in time.
Drink Enough Water
It’s a known fact that more than 60% of your body is made up of water. Your body consumes water for various functions; if you don’t replenish it, these functions get disrupted. Water not only boosts your metabolism and removes waste from your body, but also suppresses hunger. You must drink about 8-10 glasses of water (about three to four liters) everyday.
When you cook yourself, you not only burn some extra calories in the activity, but even tend to avoid unhealthy food. People who cook six to seven days a week are generally more healthier than those who tend to eat out.
In order to get slim and maintain fitness, a combination of good dietary habits, an effective exercise regimen and a healthy lifestyle is if paramount importance. If you’re thinking about getting that slim body, consider following the points given in this article. You’re sure to see the results!