Monday, August 20, 2018

Is the Corporate Climb Draining you?

December 8, 2009 by  
Filed under Lifestyle

Tall, dark and handsome — that’s passé. Now here’s the new ideal — the caring dad staying up to change nappies, brave enough to shed tears in public, standing by beloved during PMS, disciplined to work out every morning, jet setting between cities/continents, donating to charities, becoming the CEO/ president/ MD/ chairman before 40. And yes, courteous and charming.

The tables have turned. The tall, thin, fair ideal for women has existed since time immemorial and now men have to fit to standards. Women have almost killed themselves (sadly, not just metaphorically) in the race to match up to the prerequisites for being marriageable/ acceptable. It’s really unrealistic to expect that men will somehow save themselves from the trap.

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 The one thing that invariably happens in this circus of matching up to the new ideal — and that too under a tight deadline (under 40 years) —  is that it takes a big toll on one’s health.

Eating right starts going down the list of priorities and wine tasting makes its way to the weekly calendar. If you have been exposed to a hostel for a year or two, you probably won’t realise that food plays a crucial role in keeping you fit, healthy and smart.

Late nights become a norm; buying that big house in upscale neighbourhood is always on the cards, private school fees are likely to be the life earnings of lesser mortals and you just lost a fortune from your investments in the recent recession slide.

One of my clients once told me “when I had the body to flaunt designer labels, I didn’t have the money to buy them. Now that I have the money I have lost the body!”

So what you need to do is ensure that your fatter bank balance stays inversely proportional to the size of your waist. Incidentally, the size of a man’s waist has a huge influence not just on blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol and heart health, but also on the reproductive organs and fertility. Men are also falling prey to joint conditions such as arthritis, which were until recently, exclusive to women.

When it comes to food and exercise, the human body, irrespective of the gender, responds the exact same way by increasing lean tissue and reducing fat mass. This change in body composition is what gives men a lean and muscular look. Obviously it also leads to better responses from all the vital organs such as the heart, lungs, pancreas, intestines, liver, kidney etc. Beautiful inside out.

Some health tips for the hardworking-partying-harder male of today:

  • If you are not waking up fresh in the mornings for over a month, it’s probably because you need a break. Please take one ASAP.
  • Ensure that you eat a meal on reaching office. If you find yourself having tea/coffee between 9 and 11 am daily, it means that you are killing the hunger signal. Stop drinking and eat. Split breakfast in two meals. Have a small portion before leaving home and pack some for office.
  • Keep a bottle of water on your table at all times and drink at least three bottles in office. Smoking (passive included), tea, coffee, and of course the air conditioners, make for a dehydrating environment.
  • If you travel frequently, book flights which will let you have breakfast or dinner at home.
  • If you haven’t slept well or had a particularly stressful day, skip your workout and rest.
  • Learn to help yourself. Cooking a few basic dishes for yourself doesn’t just add to your sex appeal, but also makes tons of sense. It helps you rewind and reassures you that you do take care of your stomach and yourself.
  • Switch off your BB/iPhone by 8 pm daily. Switch it on only after breakfast.
  • Bought books that you haven’t found the time to read? Book yourself on a reading holiday and at least once a year, travel alone (not on work please).

Quick Stats:
1 in 100 *Number of blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol cases in people below 40 in the ‘90s
1 in 20 *Number of blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol cases in people below 40 today

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Omega The Almighty

March 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Nutrition

Can you reduce your blood pressure and your risk of heart attack simply by getting two teaspoon of vegetable oil and six to 10 walnuts halves into your diet daily? Yes, you can!

Omega-3 in various Oils, Image Source:

Omega-3 in various Oils. Click on the Image for larger view. Image Source:

Findings of two recent international studies show that as long as the vegetable oils you use are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids-known to lower triglycerides, slow hardening of the arteries, reduce heart attacks, and more- your risk of having a heart attacks can be reduced by about 59%. The omega-6 fatty acids found in walnuts also help keep blood pressure low, and that decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Next time you are looking to cook up something special, or just enjoy a salad, choose your oil from among those rich in Omega-3 and/or Omega-6. These includes soybean, canola, flaxseed, safflower, sunflower and corn oils. You can also get a solid servings of fatty acids by munching on a few walnuts as a snack, or enjoying a meal with tofu, tuna, salmon or sardines as a main course.

Go Fish

Omega-3 fats are good for your heart, but they can also be a boon, but they can also be a boon to your waistline. In a multicenter study involving 232 overweight volunteers on a reduced-calorie diet, researchers found that when the dieters ate a meal rich in fatty fish, they felt fuller longer than those who’d eaten leaner fish, such as cod. The reason? High levels of Omega-3s may prompt the body to produce more leptin-the harmone that signals fullness-which may lead you to eat less food throughout the day, scientists hypothesize.

People with heart diseases may want to take supplements to ensure they get the proper amount of the heart-healthy fatty acids. Some heart patients, including those with severe angina, seriously compromised heart functions, or potentially lethal ventricular rhythms should speak with their doctors before taking fish-oil supplements

Source: American Heart Associations, Department of Health and Human Services, Heathmonitor
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