Everyday we hear some new factoid on health and fitness. Things that are considered healthy today suddenly are denounced as evil tomorrow and food items that were considered avoidable yesterday are praised as God’s gift to mankind. In this constantly changing landscape of health fads, follow these simple rules to achieve and maintain your health and get fitter.
1) Choose Organic-
When buying grains, veggies, fruits, etc always try and find the ones labelled organic or if possible buy them from a farm that is known to use traditional or organic methods of agriculture. Indiscriminate use of pesticide and fertilizers is causing serious damage to not only the crop but also rendering the soil barren and dead. The crops growing using chemical agents are known to contain a toxic residue and causes damage to the peoples health. The pesticide residue that gets retained in the grains, fruits, etc is very harmful and is now known to be the cause of many serious illnesses. Studies have shown that the pesticide is present in the milk of the cattle who are fed on the pesticide laden crops. Organic, on the other hand is a safe and healthy way of farming. It is not only safe for human consumption but is also good for the environment. Studies have shown that the organically grown crop is tastier and has high nutrition value. So go Organic!!
2) Unrefined foods-
Refined foods are the ones that looks neat and tidy and look factory made. Unrefined on the other hand might look crude but are high on health value. The process of making the foods refined is heavily chemical dependent and intensive. It involves passing the food items through a lot of chemical adding processes which leave a very strong residue. The chemicals that are added to make the foods refined get retained in the food items like sugar, salt, oils, etc. which are harmful to our health. On the other hand raw or unrefined foods do not have these harmful chemicals and are relatively safe to eat. Raw sugar or unrefined oils , for example are not as harmful to the body as their refined avatars are. The food looses a lot of nutrition value when refined and a lot of unneeded and toxic chemicals are added to it. So stay away from refined foods.
3) Eat Local-
When we say local we do not mean just the country you live in or the city. Choose foods that are grown around you or in an area similar in geographic conditions as yours. Our body is greatly influenced by our surrounding. The amount of sunlight, rain, wind, etc shape not only our exterior self but also our metabolism. So is with the plant kingdom around us. They are also shaped by the nature they grow in. Our bodies are conditioned by the natural surrounding and are tuned in to the nature around us. So if we consume foods that are grown in a similar surrounding it blends well with our system as against the foods grown is a completely different place. This does not mean that you cannot try new things or that if you relocate your bodies will not adapt. Of course, life can take us all over the world. And once there slowly our bodies do adapt to the new setting. But even then, if you keep eating foods that are not local to that region your body goes through a turmoil. So where ever you are eat local.
4) Avoid ready foods-
Ready to eat meals, drinks or packaged snacks contain a large amounts of preservatives and additives that keep them ‘fresh’ till the moment you eat them. Foods that would go bad in a day or two when packed can be eaten even 2 months later. How is that possible? Preservatives. Are they healthy? Are the nutritious? Of course not!!! They have a lot harmful chemicals in them which are very bad for our health when consumed in large quantities. Even the companies who make some of these products are now advising not to consume too much of their product in a week. Eat freshly prepared meals where the nutrition is still intact and does not cause any adverse effect on our health. So the next time you are passing by the chips, colas, frozen foods or microwaved foods, move on to the fresh produce section.