Tips for Good Health

Our body is extremely complex, and (except for the breast milk that babies need), no single food contains all the nutrients we need to keep our body in its best condition. Therefore, our diet should include a variety of nutritious fresh foods in order to maintain good health.

Tips to ensure a balanced diet:

The daily diet should try to contain a variety of staple foods such as wheat, corn, rice and potatoes, plus legumes such as lentils and pods, a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, and foods of animal origin (such as meat, fish, eggs, and milk).
Choose unprocessed whole grain foods as much as possible, such as corn, millet, oats, wheat, and brown rice; these foods are rich in valuable fiber, which can increase satiety.

Choose lean meat as much as possible, or remove fat meat.
When cooking, try to steam or boil instead of frying food.
The snacks chosen should be raw vegetables, unsalted nuts and fresh fruits, rather than high-sugar, high-fat, and high-salt foods.

What we eat and drink will affect our body’s ability to fight infections, as well as the possibility of our future health problems, including obesity, heart disease, diabetes and various cancers.

The specific components of a healthy diet depend on different factors such as our age and level of physical activity, as well as the type of food served in the community where we live. But even in different cultures, some common diet tips can help us live healthier and longer lives.

We all need a certain amount of fat in our diet, but excessive intake, especially bad fat, will increase the risk of obesity, heart disease and stroke.

Industrially produced trans fats are the most harmful to health. If the diet contains a lot of trans fats, it can increase the risk of heart disease by nearly 30%.

Tips to reduce fat consumption:

Replace butter, lard, and ghee with healthier oils such as soybean oil, rapeseed oil, corn oil, safflower oil, and sunflower oil.
Choose white meats such as poultry and fish, whose fat content is usually lower than red meat; at the same time limit the consumption of processed meat products.
Check food labels and be sure to avoid all kinds of processed foods, fast foods and fried foods containing industrially produced trans fats. Trans fats are often found in margarine and ghee, prepackaged snacks, fast food, baked and fried foods.

Eating too much sugar is not only harmful to teeth, but also increases the risk of overweight and obesity, which can lead to serious chronic health problems.

As with salt, you must pay attention to the sugar “hidden” in processed foods and beverages. For example, a can of soda can contain up to 10 teaspoons of added sugar!

Tips to reduce sugar intake:

Limit the intake of sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages, such as carbonated drinks, fruit juices and juice drinks, fruit juice concentrates or powders, flavored water, energy and sports drinks, ready-to-drink tea and coffee, and flavored milk drinks.
Choose healthy and fresh snacks instead of processed foods.
Avoid giving children sugary foods. Salt and sugar should not be added to the complementary food for children under 2 years old, and the amount of sugar and salt should also be restricted in the food of children over 2 years old.

Avoid harmful use of alcohol

Alcohol is not part of a healthy diet, but in many cultures, celebrating the New Year is associated with heavy drinking. In general, drinking too much or too frequently can increase the direct risk of injury and can also bring long-term effects such as liver damage, cancer, heart disease and mental illness.

The WHO advises: There is no safe threshold for drinking; for many people, even a small amount of alcohol can bring serious health risks.

Eating too much salt raises blood pressure, and high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Most people in the world eat too much salt: on average, our daily salt intake is twice the WHO recommended limit (5 grams, equivalent to one teaspoon).

We should understand that even if we do not add additional salt to food, processed foods and beverages often contain a lot of salt.

Tips for reducing salt intake:

Use less salt when cooking and processing food, and reduce the use of salty sauces and condiments (such as soy sauce, stock or fish sauce).
Avoid high-salt snacks and try to choose fresh healthy snacks instead of processed foods.
When using canned or dried vegetables, nuts, and fruits, choose a variety without added salt and sugar.
There are no salt shakers and salt-containing condiments on the table, try to avoid the habit of adding such condiments; human taste buds can quickly make adjustments, and once adjusted, you can enjoy low-salt but more delicious food!

1. Eat a balanced and healthy diet
This is the first piece of advice we can give you. If you want to be healthy, watch your diet. The sacrosanct “eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day” is a rule you must have heard dozens and dozens of times, but there is a reason for it. These fruits and vegetables have a protective role in the prevention of diseases that can appear with age, such as cancer (see also: Prevent cancer, tips for a healthy lifestyle), cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes… They also provide the vitamins, minerals and fibers necessary for the proper functioning of the body.

For some doctors and nutritionists, it is even necessary to consume 7 or even 10 fruits and vegetables per day! We must therefore avoid eating too fatty, too sweet or too salty. To help you eat better, you can go see specialists, or bring your smartphone: some applications like Yuka, available on Android or iPhone, allow you to consume better by telling you if a product that you can find in supermarkets is too salty, sweet, or packed with additives. Easy to use, these applications will make things more fun!

2. Practice regular physical activity
Again, this is surely something you have heard often. But regular physical activity is essential for your health at all ages. Physical activity helps maintain the body and mind, reduce mortality and also prevent the onset of certain diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or being overweight. It also helps fight stress and sleep better.

You don’t have to be a great athlete to be physically active. Walking or riding your bike to work or avoiding taking the elevator to take the steps are small everyday things that can only do you good. Going to the pool or jogging regularly are also beneficial activities that do not take too much time.

How much time you need to spend doing this physical activity depends on your age: you can watch the World Health Organization’s advice on this topic HERE. “WHO defines physical activity as any bodily movement produced by muscles that requires the expenditure of energy – which includes movements performed while working, playing, doing household chores, moving around and during activities. leisure, ”says the WHO on its official website.

Good to know: “The term ‘physical activity’ should not be confused with the expression ‘exercising’, which is a sub-category of physical activity that is more deliberate, structured, repetitive, and which aims to improve or maintain one or more aspects of physical condition. ”

3. Drink lots of water
Water is essential for our survival. As a reminder, our body is made up of 60 to 70% water. Drinking water thus allows us to maintain a certain physical shape (even if this is not enough for good health, of course), ensures us a good mental shape as well and has health benefits that you surely do not suspect. . So you need to make sure you have enough water in a day to be on top. Doctors recommend drinking between 1.5 and 2 liter (s) of water per day for an adult. A figure that can be revised upwards in the event of hot weather like this summer or if you practice a sport, in order to stay hydrated.

4. Get enough sleep
Did you know that you spend almost 25 years of your life sleeping? This is to say if sleep has a major part in our existence and that it should not be neglected. But with work, school, family, and all the other pressures inherent in everyday life, your sleep time is strongly impacted. And it can harm your health. Lack of sleep can have consequences on your mood, your mental state, your physical state, can disrupt your metabolism or even increase the risk of developing certain diseases. These are all reasons that should prompt you to adapt your lifestyle to get enough hours of sleep. According to the US National Sleep Foundation, the recommended number of hours of sleep depends on your age. This goes from 14 to 17 hours a day for newborns to 7 to 8 hours for seniors (over 65). A teenager (14 to 17 years old) will need 8 to 10 hours of sleep, a young adult (18 to 25 years old) 7 to 9 hours and an adult (26 to 64 years old) 7 to 9 hours of sleep. These are of course indications and then it all depends on the individual.

5. Avoid smoking and drinking too much alcohol
Again, this may be something that makes sense to you. But to be in good health, cigarettes and tobacco are strongly discouraged. Smoking is the number one preventable cause of death worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco was the direct cause of 5.4 million deaths in 2004 and 100 million during the 20th century.

Alcohol is another major cause of death: it is associated with 2.6 million deaths worldwide in 2016. What if it was long believed that a small glass of wine or a beer from time to time does not was not that bad for your health, a recent study confirmed that this was not really the case (see also: Alcohol is never good for your health).

“The most surprising finding is that the consumption of alcohol, even in small amounts, contributes to the loss of health on a global scale,” points out the head of research, Emmanuela Gakidou, professor of public health at the University of Washington. “We’re used to hearing that one or two glasses of alcoholic drinks are perfect, but the evidence points to a different situation. ”

Alcohol and tobacco, the combo to absolutely avoid if you want to stay healthy and should be banned, even in moderation!

6. Relax
This may sound easy to say. But sometimes you need to mentally “disconnect” from your daily life and relax. This can involve a relaxing activity, which you can practice alone or in groups (yoga, relaxation…). Empty your mind can only be good for your body, especially if you follow the previous tips!

7. Take time for yourself and do what you love
Again, it’s easy to say but sometimes difficult to do. Because in the tumult of everyday life, between metro-work-sleep, it is sometimes difficult to take time for yourself. Not just to relax, as explained above. But to go out, see friends, do an activity (sports, culture …), visit your family … These are all important moments for your personal balance.

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