The World Health Organisation(W.H.O) describes health as “A state of physical, emotional and social well being and not merely an absence of a disease”
REASONS FOR POOR HEALTH IN MEN
The current hectic lifestyle, pollution and unhealthy food habits, irregular work schedule and academic pressures all have greatly contributed to the deteriorating state of health. A friend who is a health-conscious person and follows a daily exercise routine somehow is unable to lose weight. I then realized sometime how much ever we may diet or exercise we are unable to lose weight.
REASONS FOR POOR HEALTH IN WOMEN AND CHILDREN
Women post 40 years too are facing innumerable health issues leading to depression, weakness, anxiety, anemia, etc. The women related diseases and health issues are on the rise, children and adolescents too, are facing medical issues like thyroid, depression, obesity, juvenile diabetes, etc which were not heard earlier. They are so young that they are unable to understand the impact of these ailments on their bodies.
It becomes difficult for the parents to deal with the hormonal changes and disease that the child may be suffering from. Although the medical science has advanced tremendously and meet the challenges of fatal diseases like Leukaemia still the number of diseases also found to be on the rise and they have a great impact on people of all the age groups.
In order to meet the increasing challenges of the competitive work world and cope with deteriorating health issues, people are adapting to the holistic approach of self-healing with the right foods and meditation.
THE HOLISTIC APPROACH BASED ON CHAKRAS
As per one of the holistic approaches, there are 7 chakras which are the main energy centers of our body. Each chakra is influenced by the foods we consume. These chakras sometimes get blocked and create an imbalance in the body but these imbalances can be healed by consuming the right kinds of food. Study of chakras along with respective paired food gives great insight and understanding of different foods needed by our bodies and how eating right foods can help us stay healthy fit and build greater immunity in our body that helps us to fight diseases. The details of each chakra and its paired food required to maintained body balance is shared below:
Muladhara or Root Support Chakra:
Function: It is located at the base of the spine and represents our foundation and grounding. It supports our survival instincts, an imbalance can cause problems with the digestive system, fear, legs, etc.
Foods: To balance this chakra think of RED foods like apples, beetroots, tomatoes, strawberries, pomegranate and raspberry and roots growing underground like sweet potatoes, carrots, turnips, garlic ,beet root, onions , ginger, turmeric, protein foods like eggs ,beans, nuts, fish and lean meats and spices like paprika and horseradish.
Suggested meal: Purple potato salad with fiddlehead ferns
SACRAL Chakra or SVADHISHTHANA
Function: Controls our intimacy, emotions, creativity, helps us pursue our passions, etc. Imbalance causes depression, lack of drive, backpain, etc.
FOODS: Eat ORANGE foods like carrot, oranges, Orange pepper, peaches, apricots, sweet potatoes, Omega 3 rich foods like salmon, nuts and seeds and coconut and cinnamon.
Suggested meal: Coconut, orange, and mango smoothie.
SOLAR PLEXUS CHAKRA or Manipura
Function: It represents our personal power, will power, goals, etc.Its imbalance cause insecurity, ulcers, etc.
Foods: Yellow foods like Bananas, pineapple, corn, lemons, yellow curry, brown rice, rye, beans, vegetables, sprouted grains.
Suggested meal: Mango, grilled corn and black bean salad.
HEART CHAKRA or Anahata
Function: It is a center in which we feel Joy compassion love and is a pathway for a relationship unbalance causes low self-esteem, Paranoia, low energy digestion, etc.
FOODS: Green and raw fruits organic greens, fresh green juices, salads, green smoothie, broccoli, spinach, cucumber, green tea, avocado, lime, mint, pears, kiwi, spirulina, green apple, etc.
Suggested meal: Avocado, strawberry green smoothie bowl.
THROAT CHAKRA or Visuddha
Function: This helps our ability to express ourselves and to speak, It is located in the throat and focuses on the energy. It has an expression in intuition, integrity, honesty, etc. an imbalance can cause blockage in communication, sinus, etc.
FOODS: Blue foods like blueberries, blackberries are a good source of fiber, antioxidants and vitamins liquids like coconut water, herbal teas, raw honey lemon and fruits like apples, pears and plums are excellent for healing this chakra.
Suggested Meal: Homemade elderflower syrup.
3rd EYE CHAKRA or Ajna
Function: Located on the head. It helps in perception and is the center of wisdom and light. It helps in our ability to grow and desire to constantly learn. Its imbalance can cause a lack of direction or purpose causing tension, headaches blurry vision, balance problems, and sleep disturbances.
Foods: Purple fruits like grapes, purple Kale, blueberries, purple cabbage, eggplant, coco which is rich in flavonoids and boost serotonin to relieve stress and inflammation. These brain foods help to regain focus.
Suggested Meal: Raw Cocoa + Almond Energy Bites.
CROWN CHAKRA or SAHASRARA
Function: It is located on the top of the head represents spirituality, self-realization, it’s imbalance causes confusion, disconnection, depression, sensitivity to light, etc.
Foods: It mainly focuses on fasting and detoxification than on food. Its more focus is on the spiritual aspect of the bodies and the mind. The detoxification helps to flush out toxins thus the energy clears the mind. The meditation and yoga are excellent ways to strengthen and heal this chakra for peaceful mindfully and quietness amidst noise n chaotic life.
Suggestions: Meditation and medicinal herbs, as well as essential oils like sage, lavender, frankincense, and Janipur, helps in balancing this chakra.
Having understood the different chakras and respective foods and their roles in the body balance I found that all these foods form a part of a balanced diet which is required for a body to function smoothly and maintain a healthy life.
The question here is WHAT IS A BALANCED DIET??
A Balanced Diet:
Our body needs foods essentially from five kinds of important food groups for proper functioning and health which includes
1. CARBOHYDRATES: Carbohydrates are energy giving foods. There are two types of foods.
- We have high carbs and
- We have low carbs.
Low carbs are very beneficial for weight loss and diabetes. Healthy high carb foods are needed for providing energy to the body specially to the athletes, growing children and people with active lifestyle.
FOODS rich in carbohydrates: Processed foods, sugar, refined grains..these are junk foods
Healthy high carb foods include whole fibre rich foods like oats, quinoa seeds, bananas, sweet potatoes, beetroots, oranges, blueberries etc.
Carb foods to avoid to loose weight…
- White bread (1 slice has 14 gms of carbs)
- Whole Wheat bread(1 slice has 17 gms of carbs)
Depending on carb requirement of a man/woman a single sandwich a day could put near or over per day carb requirement.
Fruits like banana, raisins, dates, mango, pear and dried fruits are rich in carbs.Thus many fruits too have to be eaten in limited amount when on a low carb diet
4. A person following low carb diet should avoid high starch vegetables like corn, potatoes,sweet potatoes,beets etc.
- e) pastas and spaghetti should be avoided if on diet..and if consumed should be in very low amount as they have a very high carbohydrate content.
- f) morning breakfast cereals too are rich in carbohydrates even without milk.Oatmeals,whole grain cold cereals etc as few examples.
- g) beer is fairly high in carbs( 12 ounce or 356gm of beer has 13 GM’s carbs) per can.
h)sweeten yoghurt contains upto 47 gm of carbs if added with fruits.A person on diet can consume half cup of plain green your God with half cup of blueberries or raspberries this will keep digestible comes under 10 grams.
I)juices are not adviced on low carb diet .eg 368 gms of unsweeten apple juice has 48 gms of carbs. Fruit juices contain more carbs and vegetable juices.
j)a variety of vegetable salads can be used when on a low fat diet for example 2 tablespoons of fat free French dressing contains 10 grams of carbs where else an equal amount of salad with the fat contains 11 grams of carbs.
- k) natural forms of sugar like honey,maple syrup,agave nectar are high in carb.
- l) on a diet it is best to avoid chips and crackers which are very high on carbs
m)milk is fairly high in carbs and if one of enjoys milk n is on diet than must use unsweetened smoothies with almond or use coconut water.
- n) gluten free diet have become very popular because it causes diseases of auto immune system and causes the gut to flame due to gluten.It is best to prepare low carb baked foods using whole foods,almonds,or coconut flour
In spite of being on low carb diet there are many men who do not lose a desired weight. There are other factors besides diet which contribute to the weight loss .The ketogenic diet is a low carb high fat diet that causes weight loss and provides numerous health benefits.This is a detailed beginners guide.” The ketogenic diet 101 written by Rudy Mawer helps to give a complete diet plan to lose weight along with yummy recepies.
2) PROTEINS….. these are essential nutrients also known as building blocks of the body tissue,muscles,skin,hormones and also serve as fuel source .
High protein diet helps to tame ones hunger there by helping to lose weight, reduce belly fat,lowers blood pressure,fight diabetes etc. example one can have one can have fish that is rich in Omega 3S.lentils that give fibre as well as protein and walnuts on your salads and almonds on oatmeal
Best protein foods rich in nutrients and lower in saturated fats and calories are lean meats like chicken and seafoods,beans,soya, low fat diary,eggs , nuts and seeds.
Some high protein foods for diet are :
Half cup low fat cottage cheese 14 grams ,3 ounces tofu 9 grams, half cup cooked lentils 9 gms, 2 tbsp natural style peanut butter 7 gram or almond butter 6.7 gram , 3 ounces skinless chicken breast 26 gram, fish fillet 17 to 20 grams, one ounce cheese 7 gram, half cup kidney bean 7.7 grams, one ounce almonds 6 gram, one large egg ,4 ounces low fat plain yoghurt 6 grams, half cup oats have 13 gms,one cup of chopped broccoli has 3 gms, 3 ounce of cooked lean beef has 22 gm of proteins, a cup of tuna contains 30 gms ,one cup of quiona has 8 gms, whey proteins ( different brands available in Amazon) per serving contains 20 to 50 gms,Ezekiel bread contains 4 gm protein per slice,pumpkin seeds,chia seeds flax seeds and sunflower seeds are rich in protein and many nutrients besides iron, magnesium and zinc,4 ounces of soya milk has 5 grams ,peanuts are very high in protein and thus can help reduce weight, 4 ounces low fat milk provides 4 gm of proteins
3) FATS…a very rich source of energy but when consumed in high proportion can lead to many ailments like obesity, heart problems,etc
Fats maybe of two types saturated fat or animal fat isthat class of fat which has higher viscosity and energy content and due to the poor solubility issues they are associated with heart diseases. Unsaturated fats or vegetable fat naturally occurring show highest solubility in water and are easily broken down by the metabolic machinery . Trans fats are less soluble like saturated fat
For years it has been believed that eating fat makes one gain weight, rise cholesterol and cause a range of health problems but now it has been known that it is only bad fats which create havoc like arteries blockage ,fatigue , and good fats are needed to protect brain and heart. In fact healthy fats Omega 3s are important for the physical and emotional health.
Like proteins, vitamins, me minerals, and carbohydrates certain DIETARY fats are also important and they are
needed in the body . These fats help to provide energy ,absorb vitamins and protect heart and brain. Healthy fats play an important role to manage moods, stay on top of your mental game fight fatigue and control weight Dietary fat plays important role in cholesterol levels.” cholesterol is a fatty wax like substance which body needs to function properly”, but too much of cholesterol can have a negative impact on the health .HDL (high density lipid)cholesterol is a good cholesterol found in the blood .LDL (low density lipid)cholesterol is a bad cholesterol.It shows that the levels of LDH has to be kept lower than HDL. HDL protects against heart diseases and stroke. Conversely high levels of LDL can also clog arteries if not absorbed properly in the body and low HDL can also make an increased cardiovascular risk .As fat is an important part of a diet it is important to focus on good fats and limit our diet from harmful. Good sources fats are: canola, peanut, seaseme oils, avocados, nuts like almonds , peanuts, macadamia , hazelnuts ,beacons cashews , peanut butter ,sunflower and pumpkin seeds ,flax seeds ,walnuts fishes like Salmon , tuna ,mackerel herring , trout .and fish oil, soybean and sunflower oil ,Soya milk ,tofu etc.
4) VITAMINS and
5 ) MINERALS…….vitamins and minerals are considered as essential nutrients and also known as protective foods because they perform hundreds of functions in the body. They help to strengthen the bones ,heal ounds,improve immune system, also convert food into energy, repair cellular damage and help our body fight diseases .
Proteins , carbohydrates and fats are known as macronutrients whereas minerals and vitamins are often called micronutrients because although our body need them only in small amount but yet if it does not get even though small quantities of these the body becomes susceptible to different kinds of diseases.
Vitamin C is needed for bleeding gums and and Scurvy.It is obtained from citrus fruits like lemon, Amla,oranges etc.
vitamin A is needed for proper functioning of the eyes and prevent blindness. It is present in carrots,beetroots etc
Another important vitamin is vitamin D,deficiency of which cause softening of bones and rickets. Sun basking helps in getting vitamin D .It also helps in absorption of calcium in the body.
We get these from milk green leafy vegetables etc
Folic acid or iron supplements in early pregnancy helps to prevent brain and spinal birth defects in the offspring.It is also given in case of anaemia
The mineral Fluoride helps in healthy teeth keeping away dental cavities.
Although vitamins and minerals both are micronutrients there is a slight difference in the sense that vitamins are organic and can be broken down by heat or acid whereas minerals are inorganic and retain their chemical structure. Thus minerals in soil and water easily find their way into the body through plants ,fish, animals and fluids but it is difficult to get vitamins from food and other sources into the body because cooking, storage and simple exposure to air can reduce these vitamins .Vitamins like Vit B and Vit C are water soluble vitamins and are easily lost during washing of fruits and vegetables if they are cut and washed .Also during cooking in order to avoid their loss we cover and cook and lemon is added just few mins before we put off the flame.But nevertheless what is essential is that theses vitamins are very important for the body. FAT soluble vitamins get entry into the blood and travel through proteins.Water soluble vitamins are absorbed directly into the bloodstream as food and broken down during digestion because much of the body contains water. These vitamin circulate easily into the body and excess amount are removed by kidney from the body .
They release energy, produce proteins and cell make collagen with help of these vitamins. Fat soluble vitamins include vitamin A, vitamin D,vitamin K and vitamin E. They help to build bones, protect i the body .Fat soluble vitamins keep your eyes ,last, gastrointestinal tract and nervous system in good repair .They also make bones strong ,protect vision, interact favorably in the body like vitamin E is needed for storing vitamin A .They also protect the body by acting as antioxidants. Fat soluble vitamins are stored in the body for a long period so toxic level can build up .Hence supplements of these vitamins must be taken only under medical supervision.The body needs and stores large amounts of major minerals.Some major minerals travel to the body in different ways. Example potassium is observed in the bloodstream freely and excreted by the kidney. Calcium is more available because it requires a carrier for absorption and transport .Some important minerals are calcium ,chloride, magnesium, Phosphorus ,potassium ,sodium, sulphur. They maintain the proper balance of water in the body. Calcium ,Phosphorus and magnesium are important for healthy bones . Sulphur helps to stabilize protein structures .We must not overload our bodies with sources of calcium because excess calcium ionsvtgen get deposited in our bodies creating bone problems if not excreted properly from the body. The excess sodium in the body is excreted through kidney when the body sensors indicated it’s greater concentration in the body which too is harmful if not removed from the body.Trace minerals are chromium ,copper, chloride , iodine ,iron, molybednum, selenium and zinc. Iron along with protein forms Haemoglobin which carries oxygen in the blood. Chloride help strengthen bones and prevent tooth decay .Zinc helps in blood clotting .Copper helps to form several enzymes Iodine helps in thyroid functioning but all these minerals have to be taken in proper amount and all the supplements my only be taken under medical guidance because exceeding many levels can cause harmful effect on the body.
Beside these main food groups we also need:
It is a fibrous substance that is undigestive and a material in fruits and vegetable foods .They are the foodstuffs which help the easy passage of food and bowl movements. They remove waste products from the body especially the alimentary canal.It also helps in flushing cholesterol and harmful carcinogens out of the body.
- High fibre diet improve health and helps in weight loss .
- There are two types of fibres , insoluble fibre is the one which does not dissolve in water and which helps to prevent constipation. It is found in whole grains,cereals ,vegetables like carrot , celery and tomatoes.
- Second are soluble fibres which dissolve in water and help to control blood sugar levels ,reduce cholesterol and are found in Barley, oatmeal , nuts and fruits like apples, citrus fruits and pears.
- Fibre studies have highlighted that eating a high diet fibre can help to boost immune system. It improves overall look and helps to improve digestive health. Thus preventing hemorrhoids ,gallstones, kidney stones, it also reduces heart diseases by reducing the risk for metabolic syndrome related to diabetes. It also helps to lower blood pressure and improve levels of HDL and shed excess weight around the abdomen. Fibre also helps to reduce diabetes type 2 .It is also suggested that eating a high fibre diet helps prevent colorectal cancer. The evidence is not conclusive yet.It flushes toxins out of the body and helps to improve the health and appearance of the skin
- .The fibre is advice as a part of the diet which helps to lose weight and maintain a healthy way
- . It also helps us to feel fuller and the fibre stays longer in the stomach,thus the feeling of fullness last for longer during the day
- .It thus helps us to eat less thereby helping wright loss.
- High fibre fruits and vegetables are low in calories so including them in the diet helps to reduce calories. It also helps to regulate blood sugar levels .There by maintaining body fat burning capacity, avoiding insulin ,also it helps to remove fat from the digestive system at a faster rate
- . so it can be observed that when you feel up on high fibre foods there is more energy for exercise.It helps to avoids insulin spike,and prevents craving for unhealthy foods
- ..As per the NPM commands water consumption habit is different for different individuals .Total water intake of 3.7 l for the average adult male and 2.7 litres for the average adult female is very important to transport nutrients in the body it also helps to maintain body temperature. Water needs vary from individual to individual and depends on numerous factors like activity geographical location, temperature ,daily activities,etc.we also possibly lose water from a body in terms of urine and sweat.
- In order to prevent dehydration we have to drink adequate amount of water. Health authority commonly recommend 8 ounces glass is equal to 2 litres or half a gallon which is known as 8 by 8 rule and is very easy to remember.Some believe that we need to sip on water constantly throughout the day even when we are not thirsty.
- One study in women show that a fluid loss of 1.36 present after exercise impaired mood and concentration increases.The studies show that the dehydration of 12 3%from body is caused by exercise .It can also have negative effects on performance leading to reduced physical and mental performance
- .Drinking water about half an hour before meals helps to reduce the number of calories as we end up consuming less food especially in older individuals.
- Also study shows that dieters who drank 17 ounces or 500 ml of water before each meal loss 44% more weight than compared to those who did not drinkwater.It can cause temporary increasing of metabolism and drinking half an hour before meal for each male can help make automatically less calories which will help to reduce weight .
- We also know that certain foods also have water like fruits , and vegetables also have water which contribute to the total water intake in our body.
- Water balance has to be maintained in the bodyduring certain circumstances. Back after exercises there is increased sweating, in dry climate etc the intake of water becomes more.The water requirements also increases during athletic training.
- The simple guidelines for drinking water is : drink when you are thirsty .After exercise make sure to drink enough water and fluids with electrolytes to compensate for the loss fluids .
The calorie requirement differ for different age groups and we need to be careful while eating and selecting our food .
SO What’s THE CALORIE?
It is the unit of measurement of energy ( heat).Here it describes the amount of energy provided by a food that we consume.
Women needs around 2000 to 2500 calories approximately a day, a man needs 2500 to 3000 calories a day ,the child requires 1000 to 1500 calories a day. calorie requirement depends on different factors like age ,work, weight and height ,lifestyle, climatic condition etc
In order to loose weight a woman needs to consume 2000 calories and man needs to consume 2500 calories
IMPORTANCE OF COOKING METHODS
- Also the method of cooking used helps greatly in loosing weight .
- Low fat cooking techniques helps to reduce saturated fat in foods.
- Lower the amount of calories which is useful for weight control. Some of the cooking techniques which are used instead of the conventional oil fry methods are Roasting and Steaming.
We could try roasting meat or chicken or fish of vegetables in the oven .For shallow frying we can use non stick frying pan or wok with very small amount of oil such as canola sunflower.Its measure with a teaspoon per person rather than just pouring oil .A little water can be added to prevent it from drying .
Steaming vegetables and chicken or fish after marinating with green masala also helps reduce calories
A method to prepare fat free foods using heat.Here we can choose lean cuts of meat or trim pieces . In the roasting , in a baking dish with little of water and spices, herbs, mustard oil can be used as marinade to prevent the drying out. cover it with Aluminium foil for the part of the cooking time to retain moisture
HOW TO ROAST VEGETABLES.
- Wipe them with with the clean paper or treat them with unsaturated oil ,then use baking paper on the tray for easy cooking time .
- Take meat out 10 minutes before the vegetables are done .cover them which help them to stay moist.
- Trim all visible fat before cooking and remove chicken skin .Add lots of vegetables.
- After cooking change the casserole so that if any fat that is left will remain behind.Also the harden fat on the surface thickens and can be removed.
- If you are in a hurry drop in some ice cubes to thicken fat. Use less fat variety of cheese instead of blended cotton cheese.
- Icing sugar or without Vanilla is a grave alternative for light milk which can be made by powder skimmed milk instead of cream for flavour.
- We can also add some corn flour to thicken if needed. Reduce the amount of cheese .we can use parmesian cheese ,it is more flavoured and is needed less and hence less calories.
- Use unsaturated margarine instead of butter.
On diet to reduce fat use light spread. Use a variety of cooking oils like sunflower ,olive oil ,. natural oil in cooking with a teaspoon and do not put it directly.reduce the amount of oil used. If possible use cottage cheese, humus ,avocado, unsalted and spread as alternative on bread to n reduce fat .varieties of milk, yogurts and creams must be reduced to lose weight. . Use lemon juice to create desired flavour.
Considering all the above factors now it becomes easier to follow a proper diet plan and exercise hence for a man who wishes to maintain a healthy and disease free life with a lean , glowing physical appearance he has to consider all these factors before adopting a particular diet plan and exercise regime.
Below is a one example of a diet plan given by the diet expert Anjali .This is for a ready reference as an example on food pattern to be followed by men while on diet
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