Wise Tips and Dietary Guidelines for Executives
Health is Wealth. Today people are working 12-14 hours, earning twice or thrice may be 10 times what our parents earned but spending lakhs thereafter on medical treatment. Diseases like diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and cancer, which occurred in people between 50-60 years of age, is now seen in those of 30-40 years of age. Another major problem is infertility and again lakhs and lakhs are being spent on this. Indigestion and gastric problem due to hurry, worry and rich, fatty curry is a common occurrence. But the biggest trademark of the executives is the ever widening abdomen and heavy hips.
Overweight and obesity is a common sight in most multinationals and IT companies. Here again people are spending huge amounts of money on various, widely advertised centers and methods of weight loss. I have personally counseled hundreds of executives and spoken in many of the companies in our city namely Intel, Infosys, Motorola, Netkraft, BHEL, etc,. on Fitness, Healthy Eating and Weight Control. There is no short cut. One has to make a serious commitment to making a lifestyle change and stick to it. There is no compromise and you have to be very regular in your commitment. We have found that the Miracle Formula for Fitness is a combination of the following:-
- Walk-25-30 minutes daily
- Water-2-3 liters daily
- Diet- Healthy, balanced, regular eating, and controlling fatty food intake.
Never skip breakfast. However rushed you may be or however early you have to get out, you have to eat a proper balanced breakfast. It could be 2-3 slices of whole wheat bread with an egg (avoid butter) 2 egg whites may be eaten without the yolk, if there is high cholesterol levels. A glass of skimmed milk along with this is ideal. A vegetarian may use jam, veg sabji ˝ cup or green chutney (without coconut) on the bread. Idli or dosa with sambar plus a glass of milk is also an option. Here again try to avoid coconut chutney on a daily basis. Tea or coffee may be had early morning or at 11am. A glass of milk is ideal with breakfast.
We suggest that you carry a couple of fruits with you to work – apples, pears, oranges, guavas, etc,. are the best choices. Try to have one at 11 am or 12 noon so that you break the gap between breakfast and lunch. When you do this it rejuvenates you to keep working efficiently and helps to keep your metabolism up and protects against over eating at lunch.
Lunch is the most important meal in the day. It must be eaten and must be properly balanced. Those who compromise on breakfast or lunch start snacking by 6pm or overeat at dinner. Roti or rice or a mix of 1 or 2 roti plus ˝ -1 Cup rice or only 2-3 roti or only one-cup rice may be eaten. This must be accompanied by a dhal, plus a vegetable sabji and salad. Curd may be eaten along with it and also 1-2 pieces of non-veg preferably chicken or fish. Red meat mutton, beef or pork may be eaten not more than once a week if necessary. If eating out try to avoid non-veg soups and the gravy of the non-veg as those are very fattening.
Teatime is important. Even if you are not too hungry try to have a cup of tea and if necessary 2 Marie biscuits. Avoid rich cookies and cream biscuits. This will ensure that you don’t start snacking or binging (overeating) by 6pm. If you are still at office try to have a fruit at 6pm. If you are home by 6pm be very sure to eat only a fruit first as soon as you get home. Remember you are at the end of the day, tired and all your defenses are down. 6pm is most people’s undoing. If even after the fruit you are still hungry go for a glass of skimmed milk or a skimmed lassi. You must resist the desire to snack here. Even if you eat perfectly all through the day but eat some oily snack like a samosa or mixture at 6pm you will ruin everything. The potato and maida in the samosa are digested in 1-2 hours and you feel much better but the oil used to fry the samosa takes 6-8 hours to be digested and will enter your blood stream as calories after 12 midnight. Your body is asleep so the calories cannot be burned and will be stored as fat.
If you have to go out for dinner have a bowl of salad and curd or another fruit just before you leave. This will help you to resist all those oily starters, chips and nuts. Yes, they are delicious but too, too dangerous for your heart and health. Note- An inch more on the waistline is a year less on your lifeline. Even at a party or executive dinner, ask for salad as a starter.
Dinner must be the lightest meal in the day. We believe in a 40% breakfast, and fruit. 40% lunch and tea and 20% dinner. However it is dangerous to skip dinner or have only a soup, only a salad or only a glass of milk for dinner. It must be a properly balanced meal of Roti, dhal, salad vegetables and curd.
It is smart to avoid rice, rava, pasta, sevia, idli, dosa, etc. at night and have roti or whole wheat bread, always for dinner. Raw salad also is a must at dinner as the fiber in these two items help to raise the metabolic rate, which is slow at night. They also help to lower blood lipid and sugar levels remarkably.
Avoiding non-veg at night is seen to have the most significant effect in weight control. You may eat non-veg as often as you want at lunch but as far as possible avoid at night as it gets converted to fat and stored while you sleep. Similarly avoid sweets and desserts after dinner try to stick to fruit if you must have a sweet taste in the mouth.
Be very careful and cautious with alcohol. 1 large drink, 1 glass beer or 1 glass wine are all equal to 120 –150 calories or 6-7 teaspoons of sugar. Never exceed 2 large or 2-glass beer or wine at one time and try not to drink more than twice a week.
Try to ensure that there is at least a 2-hour gap between dinner and bedtime. To all the above don’t forget to add a 25-30 min. walk, plus 2-3 liters water daily. This can keep most of today’s diseases at bay. It is your God given right to be healthy, wealthy and beautiful, don’t give it away!!!