How Eating Healthy Now Affects Your Body in the Future

Eating Healthy
Think of your health as the amount of money in your bank account. Just as you’d like to have more money and keep growing, it’s also wise to have more health in your body and keep that growing as well.
And while maintaining a balanced diet may not always be convenient or cheap, it’ll definitely pay off both in the short and long-term health plan you intend to have for your body.A healthy diet means you’re doing the following on a daily, or in some cases weekly, basis:

  • Eating a healthy breakfast
  • Eating foods rich in folate, as dark leafy greens, carrots, tomatoes, and bell peppers
  • Balancing your intake of lean protein and whole-grain carbohydrates
  • Cut back on sugar, salt, fats, and alcohol
  • Eat fish 2 or 3 times a week
  • 4 to 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day
  • Drink caffeine in moderation

‘I would say that the most important thing is a well-rounded diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables and whole grains and fiber,’ says Sally Barclay, a registered dietician at the Nutrition Clinic for Employee Wellness at Iowa State.
A good trick is to divide your plate. Mentally visualize your plate divided into 4 quarters. One quarter should be lean protein the size of your palm is ideal; one quarter should be complex carbohydrates, as brown rice or pasta; the last 2 quarters should be fruits and/or vegetables. Also, a good point to keep in mind is the more colorful your plate, the healthier it is for you.

Enhancing your emotional state:

For a quick pick-me-up, the first thing we crave is pastries or some French fries. But the truth is those foods contain refined carbs which even though they may help the brain produce serotonin, they also cause a quick crash. Serotonin is also known as the ‘feel good’ hormone which your brain secretes when you feel pride after hitting a milestone or reaching a goal. On the healthy side of the spectrum, whole-grain carbohydrates produce a more lasting effect on your mood and sustain the levels of serotonin in your body.

Maintaining a healthy weight:Maintaining a healthy weight:

Staying within your recommended daily caloric intake and eating moderately sized meals are two ways you can be in control of your weight. Having a healthy weight means you’re reducing your risk of chronic diseases, like heart disease and diabetes just to name a couple.

Boosting your energy levels:

Eating foods high in iron sustains your energy levels throughout the day since the mineral iron helps carry oxygen throughout the body. Examples of food sources rich in iron are spinach, Swiss chard, almonds, and quinoa. Also, snacking on nuts and fruits, and drinking water helps maintain your energy levels.This is what happens to your body when you start eating a healthy, nutritious diet:

After 1 day:

Fewer hunger pangs
Boost in metabolism
Increased focus and clarity

After 1 week:

Increased energy levels
Better sleep
Decreased bloating
Emotional stability

After 1 month:

Youthful skin
Eating healthy becomes a lifestyle choice
You save money on soft drinks, fatty junk food, and snacks

After 6 months:

Boost in self-confidence
Better sex
Lower blood pressure
Stronger bones

After 1 year:

You’ve reached your goal weight
You’re smarter about your food choices
You feel stronger and more alive
You get sick less often
Your concentration and memory have increased
In their bookPerspectives in Nutrition (1990) by Gordon M. Wardlaw and Paul M. Insel, they state that ‘…nutrients are the nourishing substances in food that are essential for the growth, development, and maintenance of body functions. The essential meaning is that if a nutrient is not present, aspects of function and therefore human health decline. When nutrient intake does not regularly meet the nutrient needs dictated by the cell activity, the metabolic processes slow down or even stop.’
If you think about it in that perspective, you’ll realize that food is much more than just counting calories or reading food labels. It makes us look at food as the sustenance we need to keep going strong for many years to come.

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Tips for Good Health at Every Age

Tips for Good Health at Every Age
Although there may not be a fountain of youth, there are plenty of things you can do to improve your chances for a long, healthy life.
Follow this expert advice from our Palo Alto Medical Foundation primary care doctors to do the best for your health at each life stage.Childhood and Teen Years
‘I think one of the most important things parents can do is help their kids cultivate wellness behaviors right from the start, ‘ says Radhika Varma, M.D., a family medicine doctor at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation.
Habits developed in early childhood are much more likely to be carried into adulthood. So it’s important to minimize or eliminate junk food and soda in favor of fresh fruit and vegetables, and encourage exercise.
‘But you can’t just talk about these things with your children, ‘ she says. ‘You need to actively participate. Take a walk as a family instead of watching TV. Be a healthy role model. It’s the best gift you can give your kids.’
Of course, regular check-ups at the doctor are vitally important, as are immunizations. Throughout childhood, kids should be vaccinated against a host of diseases including polio, diphtheria, measles, mumps and rubella.
Healthy sleep habits are also important. ‘There needs to be a ‘lights out time’ for computers, tablets and cell phones, ‘ says Lisa Hladik, M.D., an internist at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation. ‘Otherwise, kids can easily stay up all night playing online games, texting or hanging out on social media sites.’
Also, make sure children learn early on to be safety conscious. That means using seat belts in the car, wearing appropriate protective clothing during sports activities and donning helmets whenever they use wheels of any kind – bikes, skates or scooters.
And don’t skip the awkward topics. ‘As children grow into adolescence, parents need to start the discussion around risky behaviors involving drugs, alcohol and sex, ‘ says Tarini Anand, M.D., an internist at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation.The ‘Invincible’ Years

jill111 / Pixabay

In their 20s and 30s, people often feel indestructible and in little need of medical attention. But it’s important to see a doctor routinely to be screened for depression, infections and signs of early stage disease.
‘There are few, if any, symptoms associated with elevated blood pressure, cholesterol or sugar levels, ‘ says Dr. Anand. ‘That’s why I stress to my patients in this life stage to come in regularly for their annual screenings and to focus on healthy habits.’
STD screenings are also important, Dr. Hladik says. The human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most commonly transmitted STD and can be detected by a simple Pap smear. Between the ages of 21 and 30, women should get a Pap test at least once every three years. Between 30 and 40, your doctor may switch to once every five years.
‘If you’re sexually active, you also need to have a regular chlamydia screening with each new partner, ‘ she says. ‘Chlamydia is the second most common STD. It has no symptoms and, left untreated, can cause permanent sterility. But if caught early, it’s easily cured.’Middle Age
‘At 50, both men and women should have their first colonoscopy, ‘ says Dr. Varma. ‘If no problems are discovered, the test should be repeated once every 10 years.’
Fifty is also the age when men should consider being screened for prostate cancer, particularly for African American men or those who have a family history of the disease.
Heart disease is also more common in people 50 and above, so it’s crucial to eat a healthy diet and get regular exercise.
For women in their 50s, menopause can cause hormonal changes leading to mood swings, hot flashes and sexual problems. A doctor can provide a variety of tools to help combat these symptoms.
Risk for cancer increases in the 40 to 60 age range. For women, annual Pap smears are important to screen for cancer of the cervix. Regular mammograms are also recommended to detect breast cancer early.
Adults over 60 should make sure their vaccines are up-to-date, and to talk to their doctors about immunizations for shingles and pneumonia. And, ‘If you haven’t stopped smoking by now, quit!’ says Dr. Hladik.
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Want to Know How To Lose Your Weight The Healthy Way?

lose your weight the healthy way
Most people today want to have more, have better, run faster and fly higher. Never say enough! In this environment finding a healthy weight loss routine can be even more difficult. So in this day and age, howcan youlose your weight the healthy way?
People have more appliances, conveniences and processed foods to cut down on preparation time and clean up than ever before. But people are heavier. And they are busier than ever before. Conveniences are supposed to cut down on the number of hours spent on preparation, but people have filled those hours with more things and spending less time with their families.
Weight and stress-related diseases are at their peak. Two-thirds of Americans are overweight and 1/3 of those are obese. Cardiac disease, diabetes, stroke, and cancer are at an all-time high. (1)
In order to decrease weight-related diseases, people have turned to the weight loss industry, which has more than met their needs. But finding a healthy weight loss alternative may be difficult to find with the number of prescription and over the counter supplements that adversely affect the body.
People also suffer from distorted body images that are perpetuated by the media. All around us are pictures of airbrushed models who don’t even look as good in person as they look in pictures. Hollywood, which once elevated skinny actresses to top positions, is now recognizing that skinny is just skinny; being fit is attractive. (2)
‘Diet’ doesn’t necessarily mean losing weight but eating a healthy diet for proper nutrition. Some people try a starvation diet – or taking much fewer calories than they need to survive – and only find that they have put their body in starvation mode. Once they go back to former eating habits they gain even more weight than they had before.
Healthy weight loss means you have a realistic understanding of what you want to achieve. This understanding is based on your own body type and lifestyle and not on that of the most recent bony model.
Define your goals for a healthy weight loss, write them down and put them where you can see them every day. Remember that anything can be accomplished one step at a time. A trip of 1,000 miles starts with one step. Take it slowly and make the changes permanent.
Anytime you feel you are being deprived you will fail. Healthy weight loss does not include denying yourself nutrients or your favorite meals. You’ll obsess over them and your failure will be secured.nutrition, balanced dietStart with balanced nutrition and the correct portions of protein, fruits, vegetables, and water. Serving sizes are much smaller than you might anticipate. Become familiar with the correct sizes by using a small food scale. Serve the meals on smaller plates and eat more slowly; it is amazing what your brain can convince your body to accept!
Break the meals up into 4-6 smaller meals rather than 1-3 larger ones. You want to keep your body fueled and never really feel too hungry. Once you start to feel hungry you may also start to feel cravings. The cravings are harder to resist than the actual feeling of hunger. Try to stop both before they start.
Phase out the trash in your diet. You don’t need me to tell you what that is! The processed foods, crackers, sweets, hamburgers and fries, candies and donuts have no place in a healthy weight loss regimen. When you get hungry at 3 pm grab an apple or banana to tide you over until dinner. Leave the candy bar in the candy machine.
Drink lots of water each day. One rule is to drink 4 oz of water for every hour you are awake. Water flushes out the toxins and waste products in your body. You can judge your hydration level by the color of your urine. If your urine has color you need to drink more! Sometimes just remember to drink 8 – 12 ounces of water each time you visit the bathroom.
In a healthy weight loss program, you will also participate in exercise at least 3-4 times a week for at least 30 minutes. It doesn’t have to rigorous. You can walk for 30 minutes each day and you’ll get some health benefits without the sweating, grunting and groaning of the exercise guru. As your level of fitness improves you may find you want to increase your workouts.
A healthy weight loss program is achievable for anyone! There is no one who can’t lose weight when they truly want to; when they ask for the help they need to keep their motivation high and when they get the support they need to make their goals a reality. Too often people are focused on weight loss for a short time and then life gets in the way. Healthy weight loss is not a ‘diet’, it is a way of life that is maintained for life.
(1) Center of Disease Control and Prevention: Adult Obesity Facts
(2) Kids Health: Body Dysmorphic Disorder

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