Great healthy habits are worthy of imbibing. This is because, as everyone draws up their New Year resolution, a healthy life is needed to achieve it.
Cultivating healthy habits is not a simple task, but it is essential for you. One of the major focus when we talk about good health is the food that you eat.
Your food can help you keep sickness and diseases away and also help you overcome certain non-communicable and terminal diseases. Cancer, cardiovascular disease and the likes are all subdued with a good eating habit.
As the year winds down, the World Health Organization (WHO) has issued some tips that would help the world’s population. Your health is our concern.
The tips are all centered on healthy habits that you should adopt in the New Year.
1. Eat Variety
In 2020, make a decision to reduce the intake of one type of meal – carbohydrate-concentrate.
Often, Nigerians eat rice and then only mix it with swallow which is either eba (gari) or semo. But eating various foods with different nutrients will help the body’s immune system function better.
Vegetables and fruits are packed with different nutrients that your body needs to function better. They power your body enough to keep you strong and healthy. You need your health to be able to hustle in the New Year, 2020.
Each time you draw up your shopping list in the New Year, make conscious effort to see that vegetables and fruits are added.
Sadly, until you consciously add them, no one will wake up and send you some fruits.
Fruits are often not even part of the gifts that people receive during the yuletide.
2. Check The Oil You Use For Trans Fat
One habit Nigerians do not really have is checking the label of an item they are buying.
If you are part of the persons that do this, add it to your New Year resolution to always check labels.
It is in checking labels that you will know the kind of oil that you are using to fry what you eat.
We know that we need fat in our meal, but the wrong kinds increase risks of obesity, heart disease and stroke.
According to experts, fat droplets could to into the blood arteries and begin to clog them. This, in the long run, becomes an issue, requiring the heart to work extra hard to pump blood.
Industrially-produced trans fats are often described as the bad guys and WHO stressed that they are the most hazardous for health.
A diet high in this kind of fat has been found to raise risk of heart disease by nearly 30%. Just going for oil with low trans-fat will save you from so much.
3. Cut Back On Salt
Sadly, when we visit some ‘eating joints’ in Lagos, we find people who add salt to their meal from the container on the table.
It is a worrisome sight each time and this is a bad habit that must be dropped in the New Year. You can add “by fire by force”.
Too much salt in your meal could raise blood pressure and that is the leading risk-factor of heart disease and stroke.
WHO recommends that we limit intake of salt to 5 grams (1tsp) per day, but most times people exceed this.
For us also, the best salt to use is sea salt, which has not been processed. However, it must also be added to your meal following WHO’s recommendation.
4. Cut Back On Sugar
Also, one thing that is worrisome in our day, is the amount of sugar people consume. It is in sweetened drinks, in pastries and other snacks we munch. This is often referred to as hidden sugar.
Again, this excess consumption of sugar emphasises the need to read labels on products that you consume.
Too much sugar in your meal exposes you to weight gain and obesity.
Obesity could trigger high blood pressure, heart disease and then diabetes. These are really avoidable if healthy habits are maintained.
One thing to do is to replace your sugar for your tea with honey and then begin to eliminate intake of sweetened drink.
5. Moderate Alcohol Intake
There are harmful practices that some people who take alcohol engage in especially during festive periods like this.
Drinking till you are drunk or setting up a competition with spirit (gin) is bad.
These practices could damage the organs in your body.
Sadly, alcohol is not part of a healthy diet and intake could increase the risk of liver problem, heart disease, cancer and other ailments.
Meanwhile, as much as some researches have said certain wine could help the heart, the less alcohol one gets the better.
6. Find Time For Exercise
We can never over-flog this issue. Interestingly, WHO has recommended at least 150 minutes of exercise for adults weekly.
Sedentary lifestyle of workers is making this call for exercise even more apt.
Meanwhile, humans are made to always move. Exercising daily is important for us to be able to keep a healthy system.
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Exercise could help aid your weight loss quest, even though it does not make one lose weight when focused on.
Take a walk, dance to that song you love, jump, swim, skip or even push against the wall. The most important thing is that you move your body and sweat.
Exercise helps to detoxify your body. There are some toxins that will only come out through your skin when you sweat.
Finally, find a way to factor in these tips into your New Year resolution and you will have a fulfilled year in sound health.
Remember that you are not getting any younger and you need your health to achieve your goals and dreams.
Kindly share with your friends and family so they will know healthy habits they need to form in the New Year, 2020.