15 Self-Improvement Tips for a Successful September

15 Self-Improvement Tips for a Successful September

September is all about new beginnings. It’s a new season and many people begin new routines that will carry them through the rest of the year. Plus, September has been officially designated as Self-Improvement Month. We can’t think of a better time to start anew and better yourself! It’s time to think of every day as an opportunity to take simple steps that will help you look, feel and live better. To get you started, we”;ve gathered this list of hints that you can use to build a happier and healthier you this September.

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Here are 15 self-improvement tips for a successful September:
1. Reset your habits.

September

We make lots of choices every day. However, we also do many things without thinking, simply because they”;ve become habits. The good news is that not all habits are harmful. There are many healthy habits that can turn your September into a successful start to a new season. Even better, research shows that it can take as little as 66 days to build a new habit that”;s good for you, says University College London. This can include drinking more water, starting a new exercise routine, getting more sleep or even cutting down on screen time.

Not sure where to start? Check out these 10 workday habits of healthy people! >

2. Practice positivity.

September

You have more control of your inner dialogue than you realize. By making a concentrated effort to think positive thoughts, you can improve your mood and your health. “;People with a family history of heart disease who also had a positive outlook were one-third less likely to have a heart attack or other cardiovascular event within five to 25 years than those with a more negative outlook,”; says Johns Hopkins Medicine. They also explain that smiling reduces heart rate and blood pressure during stressful situations, even if it’s a fake smile. You really can fake it ’til you make it!

3. Give yourself goals.

September

Every achievement, big or small, starts with a goal. The goals you are most likely to reach are specific and attainable. Simply saying you want to lose weight or stay in touch with old friends, for example, makes it easy to keep putting those things off. Instead, define your goals as “;fitting into my favorite dress for a wedding”; or “;calling one friend every week.”; Click the link below for tips on writing your own goals!

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4. Accept setbacks.

September

No matter how motivated and focused we are, sometimes forces beyond our control prevent us from reaching our goals. Too often, that makes us feel like giving up, as if we”;ll never succeed. However, progress rarely goes in a straight line. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that even when we go two steps forward and one step back, we have moved closer to our goal.

5. Try mentoring.

September

People with experience in careers, parenting and life skills have invaluable knowledge to share with those just starting out. Mentoring can be rewarding for both sides–;mature people get to pass along their well-earned wisdom and younger folks get help in overcoming obstacles. Plus, when one teaches, two learn! Check out The National Mentoring Partnership: They have a “;connector”; database that matches mentors with people who want to be mentored.

6. Widen your circle.

September

If you have a few close friends, you are fortunate. However, regular contact with a broader range of people is also good for your mental health as you get older. According to research, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, “;The midlife wellbeing of both men and women seems to depend on having a wide circle of friends whom they see regularly,”; says ScienceDaily.

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7. Make time to read.

reading

We all spend more time than ever looking at the screens of electronics. It’s time to put down your smart phone and pick up a good old book! Taking time to read books helps both our bodies and our minds: Research shows that reading can reduce stress levels by up to 68 percent, says the University of Minnesota. Whether you enjoy inspirational self-help, biographies or fantasy fiction, there’s a book out there for everyone. Audio books are also a great option when you”;re on the go! Listen to them on your commute, your daily jog or while you’re cooking up a healthy meal.

8. Try new apps.

new apps

Our phones and tablets bring the world to our fingertips and can make our lives easier. You can try apps that help you work on your memory skills, learn new vocabulary, pursue creative ideas, manage your finances, try new workouts and so much more. Want to lose weight this September? Check out the FREE NuMi app from Nutrisystem, available for both Apple and Android devices! It’s the ultimate app for weight loss because it makes it easy for you to track your progress and provides daily information and inspiration. Learn more here! >

9. Learn a second language.

September

Being able to speak two languages not only allows us to communicate with a wider variety of people but it”;s also good for our brains. According to Annual Review of Linguistics, “research in recent decades has demonstrated that experience with two (or more) languages confers a bilingual advantage in executive functions and may delay the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.” You can learn a new language using one of the many online courses or apps. Solidify your skills by practicing with native speakers whenever possible.

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10. Fix your posture.

September

Sitting all day and staring at a screen can cause poor posture. This can damage your spine, cause neck and back pain, decrease flexibility and impact breathing, says MedlinePlus. You can avoid these problems by bearing in mind the basics of good posture throughout the day: Harvard Health Publishing recommends keeping your chin parallel to the floor and your shoulders even. You should have a “neutral spine” with your arms at your sides. Be sure to keep your hips level, knees and feet pointing forward and your body weight distributed evenly. Run down that list when you”;re sitting and standing to re-balance yourself and prevent the slumping that pushes us out of alignment.

11. Meditate daily.

September

Taking a little time each day to clear your mind of your daily cares and concerns can help you enjoy a stress-free September. According to Mayo Clinic, meditation has been shown to decrease the symptoms of high-blood pressure, chronic pain, anxiety, headaches, sleep problems and more. You can find many apps and online videos to help you get started. However, the basics are simple: sit in a comfortable position in a location that”;s free from distractions. Focus on the rhythm of your breathing and let any thoughts or worries that enter your mind drift away. All you need is 10 minutes to get the benefits of this little break from the rush of daily life.

12. Cook often.

healthy cooking

When you prepare your own food, you pay attention to the ingredients and can avoid unhealthy additives like salt and sweeteners. If you don”;t have much experience cooking, start off simple and practice your skills before you take on more elaborate dishes. Don”;t know where to begin? Check out The Leaf Weight Loss Blog for thousands of easy and delicious recipes that fit into your healthy diet! You can also pick up a copy of the book How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman. It covers all the basics and shares the little tips and secrets that great home cooks learn after years in the kitchen.

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13. Sleep more.

sleep

You might not think of sleeping as a way to improve your life. However, so many of us are chronically tired that it actually harms our mental and physical health. Lack of sleep even increases our chances of overeating and makes it harder for us to lose excess weight, says Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care. Try your best to stick to a regular bedtime and wake-up schedule. If you find yourself tired in the middle of the day, taking a 20-minute nap can refresh you without disrupting your night-time sleep.

Learn more about the importance of getting good sleep! >

14. Lose weight.

weight loss

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, being overweight or obese can lead to a wide range of health concerns, such as diabetes and heart disease. Losing the excess weight can reduce your risk of these problems, as well as promote positive feelings, a sense of accomplishment and better self-image. To help you reach a healthy weight, consider trying a convenient meal delivery service that fits into your new September schedule. The all-new Nutrisystem program provides you with a personalized weight loss experience and perfectly portioned meals delivered to your door. You take a quiz and we provide you with a plan that’s tailored to you. Click here to learn more! >

15. Be grateful, be happy.

September

Simply being thankful for the most basic things that we have in our lives–;food and shelter, health and safety, family and friends–;improves our sense of well-being. Practicing gratitude is associated with “greater life satisfaction,” according to research, published in the medical journal Psychiatry. What better way to improve ourselves this September than to be happier about all the good things we have? Try starting a gratitude journal and reflect on what you’re thankful for throughout the month. It’s a great way to start your day with a positive mind.

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Top 9 Foods to be Included in your Diet For a Safe Monsoon

Top 9 Foods to be Included in your Diet For a Safe Monsoon

Top 9 Foods to be Included in your Diet For a Safe Monsoon HealthifyMe Blog HealthifyMe Blog – The definitive guide to weight loss, fitness and living a healthier life.

Monsoon has started pouring in. Season change from extreme hot to pleasant and refreshing rainy season is surely soothing. But, rains also bring along its share of health concerns. From food poisoning, diarrhea, infections, cold, and flu to many other health risks, we can fall prey to a host of health issues in this season. And, when COVID-19 is wreaking havoc all over the world, monsoons could be even more dangerous to your health. Therefore, you need to make sure that the food you eat strikes the best balance between nutrition and immunity.

Immunity being the keyword in the current scenario, all we want now is to ensure that our innate immune system can take care of itself. So, eating right and being positive is the best way to go. Here we have rounded up nine food items that you should include in your monsoon diet to keep your immune system at its best!

#1 Turmeric

Turmeric

Drink it as Haldi-Doodh at bedtime, add turmeric powder to your everyday food, or have freshly grated ginger-turmeric blend as a sidekick to your platter; turmeric, in any form, is excellent for your health. Not only during the monsoons, but it should be your go-to in every season.

It has antiseptic, antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. No wonder turmeric is called the golden spice of the kitchen. Not only does it boost your natural immunity, but it takes care of your overall health. The active potent compound in turmeric is curcumin that helps us keep healthy and fight infections.

#2 Probiotics and fermented food

Probiotics and fermented food

You should include more probiotics and fermented food, like yogurt, buttermilk, pickled veggies, in your diet to make sure that your gut flora is happy. Probiotics are the good bacteria that live in our gut or intestinal tract. These bacteria can help fight off disease-fighting germs as well as bad bacteria from thriving in our bodies.

#3 Lemon: Pulp + Zest

Lemon: Pulp + Zest

Lemon is pure vitamin C, and it is great for your immunity, the need of the hour. It fights infections, eases digestion, strengthens bones, and does a lot more good things for your body.

And did you know that lemon zest is as nutritious as the flesh? Full of bioactive compounds and flavonoids, lemon pulp+lemon zest is an incredible addition to your monsoon diet. Sprinkle lemon juice on your food, grind lemon zest to a dish, or simply drink a glass of lemonade, this citrusy delight will take care of your nutrition and immunity.

#4 Indian masala chai

Indian masala chai

When the perfect olio of spices, like ginger, clove, cinnamon, cardamom, tulsi leaves, and dried black pepper, goes into the boiling water with the right proportion of tea leaves and milk, a natural immunity-boosting brew goes in the making.

Cardamom and cloves are effective against many infections, and peppercorns prevent and soothe symptoms like cold and flu. Cinnamon is a bank of medicinal and anti-inflammatory properties too. So, even if you are not a tea drinker, consider masala tea as a medical concoction and steer the side effects of monsoon away.

#5 Garlic

Garlic

Also named as the stinking rose, garlic comes with loads of health benefits. It fights the cold and flu-causing viruses and gives a boost to your immune system. Studies show that eating garlic on a daily basis increases the number of T-Cells in the blood, thus helping to protect you from viral infections like cold and flu. Alliin is a compound found in whole garlic. And, when you pound or bite garlic in raw form, alliin changes to allicin, the most potent ingredient found in garlic.

These compounds are loaded with medicinal properties and said to increase the disease-fighting response of your body. You can reap the best benefits of garlic by eating it raw.

#6 Nuts and dry fruits

Nuts and dry fruits

Munching on dates, almonds, and walnuts is a good idea, no matter what the season. However, as these nuts are rich in vitamins and minerals, these are great options to add to your monsoon diet. Rich in riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin E, these food items help to strengthen your immunity. Also, Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant, which helps in keeping your cells healthy.

If you are thinking of binge eating replace junk food and add nuts, dry fruits and seeds in your diet and make your nutrition complete with the bliss of immunity

#7 Spinach

Spinach

Spinach is a superfood. It is a good source of vitamin A, E, and C, beta carotene, folic acid, and fiber. All these nutrients and antioxidants help your body to carry on its functions properly and bestow you with a great immune system thereby preparing you for the monsoons. Although you may find many references saying it”;s not good to have leafy veggies during monsoons owing to the mud and dirt sticking to them, you can always make sure to wash them really well before cooking.

#8 Bitter Gourd

Bitter gourd

Although the very mention of this veggie might make you hide inside your wardrobe, bitter gourds are rich in Vitamin C, and antiviral as well. So, the next time your mother cooks it, do taste it. You can have it boiled, stewed with other seasonal vegetables, or fried. Whichever form you like or don’t like, make sure to add it to your monsoon diet.

#9 Ginger

Ginger

Ginger is an excellent herb with antibiotic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. It is also rich in antioxidants. No wonder, it is a go-to remedy for cold and cough, sore throat, body ache, among others, integral to every household. Ginger is also useful in boosting your immunity level. You can have it by steeping in water as ginger tea, or add it to soups and curries or have it with turmeric and milk as a soothing Haldi doodh.

Foods to Avoid During the Monsoon

Foods to avoid during monsoon season

Like we have the do’s for monsoon diet, we also have the don’ts. Let’s take a look at the foods you should avoid eating during the rainy season.

There is an irresistible string attached between the rains and pakoras and samosas, and everything fried and crisp. Munching on your favorite fried food might make you feel the bliss from inside your mouth, but these could make your tummy bloated. Humidity tends to slow down your metabolism, hence affecting your nutrition and immunity.

Frizzy carbonated beverages are tempting. However, these tend to lower the minerals’ level in your body, resulting in lower enzyme activity and a weak digestive system. So, whenever you feel like quenching your need for a cold drink, reach for a glass of nimbu paani, your daily dose of vitamin C.

Cravings of paani puri and papri chaat might comfort your taste buds, but these dishes are certainly not the right choice during monsoons considering the hygiene factor, with the air of the global pandemic surrounding us.

As the rainy season happens to be the breeding time for sea fish, it”;s better to avoid eating sea fish and have fresh-water fish and other forms of meat like chicken and mutton.

Summary

Always remember, your nutrition and immunity depends on the food you eat. Therefore, you should be conscious of what you are feeding in. In this tough time of the pandemic, when keeping your immunity uptight is highly crucial, do have a focus on your diet and safety as well.

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8 Ways to Reduce Risk of Contracting COVID-19 While Commuting to Work

8 Ways to Reduce Risk of Contracting COVID-19 While Commuting to Work

8 Ways to Reduce Risk of Contracting COVID-19 While Commuting to Work HealthifyMe Blog HealthifyMe Blog – The definitive guide to weight loss, fitness and living a healthier life.

During the last couple of months, the world had almost come to a stop owing to the COVID-19 outbreak. We need to restart and continue with our daily business and work knowing well that this virus is out there. With offices opening up, we need to consider all safety measures while traveling. Any kind of leniency in following the precautions can make it more likely to be affected by the virus. Once the virus enters your body, it starts to multiply. It is harmful not only for the infected but for the people around the infected person as well. However, avoiding this scenario is possible if one follows all the precautions and safety measures.

Some best ways to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19 while traveling or commuting to work are:

#1 Gear-up With Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Gear-up With Personal Protective Equipment

Whenever you are going outdoors, ensure that you are geared up with personal protective equipment. These mainly include a face mask and a pair of gloves. Wearing these will keep the most prone parts of your body, that is, hands and mouth, safe from coming in contact with the virus. Have at least a couple of masks and a bunch of disposable gloves ready while commuting to work. Once you are home, make sure that you wash the mask properly in case it is reusable. This will make it ready and safe to wear it the next day. Urge yourself as well as others around you to wear personal protective equipment. It will ensure the safety of everyone present in that area at that time.

#2 Sanitize your hands

Sanitize your hands

Once you have finished traveling and reached the office or your home, make sure that you sanitize your hands thoroughly. This way, if your hands are in contact with the virus, it will not be able to enter your body. Sanitizing will kill the virus before it starts to harm your body. Avoid touching anything when you are in a public place like doorknobs, railings, etc. Since the virus is widely spread, anything around you could be contaminated. For the precautions and peace of mind, keep applying the sanitizer to your hands periodically. Do not forget to wash your hands properly before and after a meal.

#3 Eat right and safely packed food

Eat right and safely packed food

Avoid eating unpacked and street food while commuting to work. It is preferred to take a lunch box, a water bottle, and other required snacks right from your home. The safest and most reliable food that you can eat is one that is prepared at your home. This is essential because the people who are preparing and serving the food in the restaurants and streets are not reliable and the food isn”;t safe to consume. Eating that may increase the risk of contracting the coronavirus.

On the other hand, if you are traveling, then consume only properly packed food products as far as possible. Even if you are visiting a restaurant, ensure that all the precautions are being taken. Choose places where cooks must are wearing all personal protective equipment. Do not be lenient about the same as consuming contaminated food can lead to serious health consequences.

#4 Maintain proper distance

Maintain proper distance

When you are traveling or commuting to work, try to maintain a decent distance. Do not stand close to the people if you are using public transportation. Avoid taking public transportation that is too crowded. Always remember that the spread of the virus is quite rapid in a crowd. Stay away from the people who are constantly coughing or sneezing. There are high chances of getting an infection from those people.

If possible, try to avoid using public transport. It is quite safe to travel or commute to your office through your own vehicle. There is a minimal risk of getting infected when you are using your vehicle. But send your car for a wash and sanitization every week. It will ensure that your vehicle is free from the virus. Do not let an unknown person enter your car for the best precautions and safety measures.

#5 Avoid touching surfaces

Avoid touching surfaces

Since many people are using public transport regularly, the surfaces there might be contaminated. If you touch any such contaminated surface, there are high chances of the virus entering your body. This is why it is generally suggested to avoid touching surfaces at any public place while traveling.

If your traveling takes a lot of time, you can disinfect the surface around your seat using a sanitizer. It will make your entire journey safer. Sanitizing the surface should not be done bare-handed. Try using the medium of transportation that regularly sanitizes every surface thoroughly. This will not let your hands, as well as clothes, come in contact with the virus. Therefore, touching any kind of surface while traveling must be strictly avoided to be on the safer side.

#6 Drink only filtered water

Drink only filtered water

There are several cases where people got infected from coronavirus due to contaminated water. Therefore, when you leave your home for the office, make sure you carry a water bottle. Do not drink water that you feel is not purified. If you feel thirsty while traveling and do not have filtered water with you, then always drink water from a packed bottle.

You may have to spend a bit of money to follow this, but all that money will be worth spending for your better health conditions. Do not hesitate to offer the water if someone around you is thirsty. Ask them to sanitize their hands and then give your water bottle. This will be completely safe and will ensure that humanity is still alive even in such conditions.

#7 Boost you immunity

Boost you immunity

If you are frequently traveling, then make sure that you get vaccinated periodically. Although there is no vaccine to get cured or to stay safe from the coronavirus yet, you can always introduce some medications and supplements to your body that will improve your immunity. These will make your body free from any kind of infections and viruses.

#8 Spread awareness

Spread awareness

While traveling, if you see a person sitting or moving around without wearing a mask, you must make him aware of the same. Stand at a safe distance and tell them to wear a mask to make that safe for themselves and others in the surrounding. All the people traveling with you must follow all precautions and safety measures. At present, it is a criminal offense to stay outdoors without wearing a mask.

Responsible citizens must point out such people and spread awareness. Therefore, spread awareness while traveling or commuting to work. Let the people, who are violating the rules, know the negative health consequences of doing the same.

Summary

Following the above-discussed ways to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19 while traveling, may be difficult for you in the beginning but with time, you will get used to it, and soon, all these precautionary measures will become your habit. Just have faith and do your part. However, if you experience any coronavirus symptoms, then do not wait for a moment and get all the tests done.

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9 Tips to Fast Safely and Maintain Immunity During the Global Pandemic

9 Tips to Fast Safely and Maintain Immunity During the Global Pandemic

9 Tips to Fast Safely and Maintain Immunity During the Global Pandemic HealthifyMe Blog HealthifyMe Blog – The definitive guide to weight loss, fitness and living a healthier life.

The holy month of Ramadan is here, where Muslims around the globe observe fasts to celebrate the month-long festival. Generally, Ramadan involves social and religious gatherings. Muslims along with their friends and families get together to pray, as well as, to break their fasts. However, amidst the global pandemic, Ramadan has taken on a new meaning where social gatherings have been banned, everyone has been confined to their homes, and maintaining a healthy immune system has become paramount in keeping oneself healthy while fasting.

Since, our immune system is responsible for warding off viruses and germs and protecting us against diseases, it is important to take measures and ensure that our immune system remains strong. According to recent studies, although the amount of necessary nutrition intake does not change, fasting Muslims need to ensure that the necessary nutrients are included in their Suhoor and Iftaar. Moreover, as fasting lasts for a long period, people tend to prefer sweet foods and drinks which reduces the opportunity in fulfilling the nutritional intake needed by the immune system. Therefore, one must follow a healthy and balanced diet that is packed with enough vitamins and minerals for they tend to remain in the body for a long period.

In addition, here are a few tips that will help you maintain a healthy immune system while fasting during Ramadan.

1. Drink enough water

Drink enough water

Maintaining fluid levels during the season of Ramadan is very important mainly due to the long hours of fasting and high temperatures. Water helps maintain the balance of electrolytes in the body and it is necessary for the absorption of many nutrients. Therefore, drinking at least two cups of water during Suhoor and spreading out two liters of water between Iftaar and Suhoor is important. This way you not only keep your body hydrated and prepared for the rest of the day but you also naturally eliminate toxins and other bacteria that may cause infections.

2. Get adequate sleep

Get adequate sleep

In general people sleep during the night for six-eight hours, however, this is not possible during Ramadan. Trying to make up for the lost sleep is key to maintaining health and wellbeing during this period. Therefore, try going to bed at 11 p.m post Iftaar and then wake up at 3.30 a.m for Suhoor and Fajr, and then one can return to sleep at 6 a.m for two hours. This routine may require you to sacrifice or reduce spending time with family or going about other activities, but your body will surely thank you for ensuring enough sleep. Following such routines not only strengthens your immune system but also makes Ramadan fasting a healthy and enjoyable experience.

3. Consume more vegetables, fruits, and protein

Consume more vegetables, fruits, and protein

During fasting, one is more prone to a slowed metabolism as well as muscle tissue breakdown. To prevent this, eating a variety of nutrient-rich foods during the early morning time and evening is cardinal. Consuming more vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, legumes, lentils, and protein-rich foods not only keeps you full for longer but also ensures your blood sugar levels are intact. Moreover, Choosing healthy foods over processed, and packaged foods help in keeping cells active and healthy, thereby providing the body with enough nutrients required to fight infections and build immunity.

4. Add enough fiber to your diet in the morning and avoid carbs and fatty foods at night

Add enough fiber to your diet in the morning and avoid carbs and fatty foods at night

Consuming high fiber and whole-grain foods are recommended during Suhoor as it promotes better satiety, improved lipid levels, and bowel function. Therefore, vitamin B, A, C, E, and D fruits and vegetables should be added to your diet. However, it has been advised by several nutritionists to avoid carbs and fatty foods (fried or processed) during Iftaar. This is because they not only contribute to weight gain but also cause acidity and indigestion. Nevertheless, our body still requires fats for hormone production, maintenance of cell membrane health and absorption of vitamins. So, the key is to add healthy fats and carbs such as eggs, avocado, flaxseed, nuts, and meat to your diet. This way you stay healthy, keep your immune system top-notch, and are prepared for Ramadan fasting.

5. Have plenty of fermented foods

Have plenty of fermented foods

Fermented foods such as yogurt, tempeh, and kefir destroy “;bad”; bacteria and reinforce “;good”; ones. These acidic byproducts protect the intestines against “;harmful”; bacteria and other invasive microorganisms. Apart from protecting us, these foods also improve digestibility and nutrient absorption. “;Good”; bacteria also activate the synthesis of certain vitamins in the digestive tract, creating an internal nutrient factory. Most importantly, fermented foods boost the immune system and prevent us from diarrhea, infections (salmonella), and other digestive disorders that lead to intestinal and respiratory disorders, and allergies. So, this Ramadan, do not shy away from adding these foods in your diet for they are significant in ensuring your overall well being.

6. Exercise

Exercise

It can be hard to maintain a normal workout during Ramadan, due to interrupted sleep and lack of liquids in the body. However, in order to remain healthy and keep your immune system functioning properly, finding the time to exercise will bring about many benefits. Exercising during this period will help keep your energy levels high, your mind stress-free, and metabolism steady. One can focus on exercise formats from strength training to cardio or just enhancing one”;s flexibility. However, one must make sure the intensity of these exercises is not high as it may lead to you compromising your health. Simple exercises such as taking small walks, climbing stairs, doing stretches will suffice largely during this period.

The best time to exercise would be either 90 minutes before sunset or after your evening meal. This way you are all set to get the workout in and get the replenishment you need after.

7. Rid your body of toxins

Adding greens such as dill, parsley, and mint can be consumed especially during Sahoor, as they both refresh the breath and purify the body. These greens can be added to your salads or yogurt finely chopped. These herbs are also high in antioxidants and can strengthen immunity and rid your body of toxins. Apart from greens, having herbal teas or black tea with lemon would also be good for your body. However, if you are not a fan of tea or greens, you can always make soup with lentils, chickpeas, oats, or chicken.

8. Stay away from caffeinated drinks

Stay away from Caffeinated drinks

Coffee and some other carbonated drinks have a good amount of caffeine in them which when had lead to restlessness and insomnia. Besides, these drinks don”;t hydrate and keep you longing for water the whole day. So staying away from these drinks and opting for plain water or coconut water are the best alternatives during fasting.

9. Avoid overeating

In general, people are of the idea that they have to dump in loads of food during their eating window to sustain for a long time. However, this is not the case as hoarding food during late evening not only disrupts your sleep but also brings about other problems such as indigestion and other gastric issues. Therefore, during Ramadan, eating normal meal sizes will help you feel more at ease, get better sleep, and even lose weight during the fasting period. If you are looking for meal replacements, you can always add a protein shake 1-2 hours before you sleep. This way your hunger levels are in tune and satiety levels in place.

Summary

As this will be our first Ramadan during a pandemic, it is important to have faith, pray, share, and most importantly care. It is also imperative that we pay attention to what our body needs and do what”;s best for it. Apart from the tips that are mentioned above with regards to nutrition and immunity, we must also make sure to stick to the things that we do know: frequent hand washing, hygiene, social distancing, and self-isolation.

Happy Ramadan and Eid Mubarak in advance!

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9 Essential Vitamins and Minerals Needed by Every Man to Stay Healthy

9 Essential Vitamins and Minerals Needed by Every Man to Stay Healthy

9 Essential Vitamins and Minerals Needed by Every Man to Stay Healthy HealthifyMe Blog HealthifyMe Blog – The definitive guide to weight loss, fitness and living a healthier life.

Our bodies started evolving about 2.5 billion years ago. However, even today, gender plays an important role in deciding our basic nutritional requirements. Studies have shown that since men engage in more physical activities than women, they have a relatively higher metabolic rate. This means in order to stay healthy, their bodies demand more macro as well as micronutrients. While carbohydrates, fat, and protein make up for the “;macronutrients”;, vitamins and minerals together come under “;micronutrients”;. Since these are required in very small quantities, they may sometimes be overlooked.

So, we decided to put together a list of minerals and vitamins that should be on every man”;s list to stay healthy. Read on to know their major sources and the impact it can have on your overall health:

Essential Vitamins and Minerals for Men’s Health

#1 Vitamin A

Vitamin A

Vitamin A belongs to the group of fat-soluble vitamins. It is primarily responsible for the growth and development of cells, vision, immunity, and even reproduction. It also acts as a powerful antioxidant and potent hormone which can greatly affect the function of the heart, lungs, and kidneys.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of vitamin A for adult men is 900 micrograms (mcg)

Sources: The predominant source of Vitamin A is liver and fish oils. Other sources rich in vitamin A are:

Milk and eggs.Green leafy veggies.Orangish yellow-coloured food items like lemons, carrots, etc.Some vegetable oils.

Benefits:

Better eyesight: Vitamin A plays a critical role in relaying visual information from our eyes to our brain. Deficiency of vitamin A may lead to many visual disturbances. This is probably the reason why the first symptom of vitamin A deficiency is night blindness or difficulty to see in the dark. Lowers risk of cancer: It is observed that adequate intake of vitamin A from natural sources like fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of lung cancer. Studies in Japan have also reported that vitamin A may even prevent colon cancer.

#2 Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12, or cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin that increases the production of red blood cells in our body. It supports the building of DNA structure and ensures the proper functioning of our nervous system. Also balances the stress hormones and helps to reduce symptoms of depression

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of vitamin B12 for adult men is 2.4 micrograms(mcg)

Sources: The main source of vitamin B12 are animal products like meat and fish (e.g. salmon and cod). Secondary sources include:

Dairy foods like milk, curd, cheese, etcEggs

Since Vitamin B12 is not found naturally in plants and grains, if you are a vegetarian or vegan, you may want to consider taking a B vitamin supplement.

Benefits:

Nourishes the neurons: Vitamin B12 deficiency is associated with memory loss, especially in older men. A study concluded that early-stage dementia can be slowed down by the use of a combination of vitamin B12 and omega-3 fatty acid supplements.Improved sperm count: Vitamin B12 is responsible for the production and development of sperm. It is a common observation that low levels of B12 can severely affect sperm count. Studies have also proved that there is a link between plasma concentration of vitamin B12 and infertility in men.

#3 Vitamin C

Vitamin C

Vitamin C, or chemically known as ascorbic acid, is critical for the wear and tear of all body tissues. It is involved in multiple functions like absorption of iron, wound healing, and maintaining cartilage, bones, and teeth.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of vitamin C for adult men is 90 micrograms(mcg). As it is water-soluble in nature, deficiency of vitamin C may occur, causing scurvy or bleeding gums.

Sources: The main source of Vitamin C are green veggies like broccoli, spinach, and cauliflower. Some other sources are:

Green and red peppers.Fruits like kiwi, oranges, grapefruit, strawberries. Food staples like potatoes and tomatoes.

Benefits:

Manages high blood pressure: The force exerted by the blood on the walls of vessels is known as blood pressure. Vitamin C removes excess fluid from our body, thereby reducing the volume of blood and overall pressure. Prevention of gout: A gout is a form of arthritis where uric acid gets deposited in the joints. A study conducted with 1,387 men found that those who consumed vitamin C had significantly lower blood levels of uric acid thereby lower chances of gout. Support system for Immunity: Vitamin C plays a significant role in building up immunity. It helps to stimulate both the production and function of white blood cells, thereby, helping the body fight infections.

#4 Vitamin D

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that regulates the levels of calcium and phosphate in the body. It is also important for strong bone, teeth, and muscle health.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of vitamin C for adults is 10-;20 micrograms (mcg). Although the deficiency is rare in India due to ample sunshine, deficiency of vitamin D can cause soft or fragile bones.

Sources: Vitamin D is produced by our skin from sunlight but can also be found in some foods.

Vitamin D can also be commonly found in

Oily fish (like Salmon, Sardines, Tuna)Red meat.Egg yolks.Soya products.

Benefits:

Decreases incidence of stroke: Strokes are one of the leading causes of death in men. Since blood pressure is controlled by the action of vitamin D, the chances of a stroke are also greatly reduced. Moreover, vitamin D also helps in weight loss further decreasing the risk of heart diseases.Improved testosterone levels: Testosterone is the male hormone responsible for primary and secondary reproductive traits. It controls everything from the coarseness of voice, facial hair growth, and even sex drive. Vitamin D helps in the regulation of testosterone levels in the blood.

#5 Vitamin K

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that carries out a complete synthesis of proteins required for blood coagulation.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of vitamin K for adult men is 138 micrograms(mcg) and for adult women is 122 mcg.

Sources: The main source of vitamin K are green leafy vegetables like kale, spinach, broccoli, parsley, etc. It is also found in secondary sources like:

Plant-based oils.Nuts and seeds.Meat. Dairy products. Soya beans.

Benefits:

Wound healing: Vitamin K is involved in the production of prothrombin, a protein that is responsible for the clotting of blood and wound healing. Reduces blood pressure: Men are more likely to develop blood pressure and heart-related concerns. Vitamin K regulates the blood pressure and ensures that the heart is pumping blood freely throughout the body.

Minerals:

About 96% of the weight of the human body is composed of these four minerals – oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, and nitrogen. However, there are small traces of other important minerals found in the body. Some of those are:

#6 Sodium

Whenever you add salt to your food, you are in fact, adding sodium. The majority of Indians meet their sodium needs as part of their daily diet. However, excess intake of sodium may lead to high blood pressure.

Daily requirement: The maximum recommended daily intake of sodium for adults by WHO is 5 g per day. However, it is noted that sodium intake in India is about 11 g per day.

#7 Calcium

Calcium

Calcium is an essential mineral to help build stronger bones, healthier teeth, and reduce muscle damage.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of calcium for young adults is 1,000 milligrams (mg). In the case of men over 70 years of age, it is increased to 1,200 mg.

Sources: The main source of calcium is dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. It is also found in:

Leafy veggies, such as broccoli, cabbage, okra.Tofu SoybeanOats.

#8 Iron

Iron

Iron supports the transportation of oxygen-rich blood from our lungs to the rest of our body. It helps in the formation of hemoglobin, which serves as an oxygen-carrier throughout the body.

Daily requirement: Since men do not menstruate, it is a common misconception that their body demands for iron are lower than women. In fact, the recommended daily intake of iron for adult males is 19.3-;20.5 mg while for females, it is 17.0-;18.9 mg.

Sources: Iron is found in huge quantities in animal products, especially red meat like beef. There are also secondary sources like:

Tuna and salmon Eggs.Beans.Baked potato.Whole grains like wheat or oats.

#9 Potassium

Potassium

Potassium regulates fluid balance, improves muscle contractions, and makes sure the nervous system is working properly. A potassium-rich diet reduces the chances of getting a stroke and also prevents kidney stones.

Daily requirement: The recommended daily intake of potassium for adults is 4,700 milligrams (mg).

Sources: Bananas are a popular and inexpensive source of potassium. Other sources include:

Daily staples like tomatoes and potatoes.Green veggies like spinach and broccoli.Sour fruits, like oranges, lemons.Beans and lentils.

Summary

Irrespective of their age, men have always seemed to function differently both physically and mentally. So, it is not a coincidence that the requirements that are needed for men are quite different from the requirements of women. Hence, it is important that every man out there makes sure to take these vitamins or minerals in the above-mentioned ways to lead a healthy and holistic life.

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