New year, new you: Nutritionist Shona Prabhu shares 10 things everyone should know about staying fit and eating healthy


Let 2019 be the year you finally conquer your health goals and become the best you can be with these important tips that will help you stay healthy. 

It’s nearly a month into 2019, and our carefully laid plans to conquer fat and become fit are slowly starting to unspool in the face of chocolate cake, back-to-work stress and anxieties at the daunting task of making the new year count.

‘Live to eat’ seems to be the mantra for most people today. Whether you are happy or sad, stressed or relaxed, food releases all the happy hormones in the brain. Now with Swiggy and Zomato making it easy to eat in every day and Dunzo helping you to get food from that favourite restaurant of yours as and when you have the craving, it has become all the more difficult to resist temptation. But all this also means you can get your hands on healthy food easier than before.

The choice is yours.

But there are still some basic and small things that you need to do on your journey to becoming healthy. HerStory caught up with nutritionist Shona Prabhu to find out the 10 things every woman should know about staying fit and eating right.

Shona Prabhu calls herself a nutrition junkie. A sports nutritionist, she set up her own firm, NutrifyMyDiet. And here’s why you should listen to her- she is currently consulting with Bengaluru Football Club (BFC), and the Phogat sisters - the Olympians and Commonwealth Gold Medalist wrestlers. And that’s just to name a few off her impressive client list.

So here’s what she says you need to do to eat healthy and keep fit in 2019:

1) Don’t hurry, savour your food. Chew every bite well so there’s no overindulgence with your food. Indulge in your favourite foods, but practise moderation.

2) Cook with whole and ancient grains like red rice, brown rice, millets, quinoa, which will become your best carb friends. They provide you with more nutrients, B-vitamins and minerals.

3) Healthy and strong bones can take you places. You build them up with regular consistent workouts and by including calcium and Vitamin-D rich foods like milk, yoghurt, paneer, tofu, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, and eggs in your diet. Iron is one of the most important nutrients for good health and energy levels. Include foods like dates, green leafy vegetables, lentils, amaranth, whole grains along with Vitamin-C rich foods like oranges, sprouted moong salad, greens for improved iron absorption.

4) Healthy snacking is fun and easy. Include nuts, seeds, lotus seeds also known as makhana, local fruits and veggies. Make your own healthy snack mix and carry it to work.

5) Hydrate and detoxify yourself to flush out toxins with water, coconut water and hydrating foods like watermelon, cabbage, pineapple, strawberries. Again, choose from what’s in season to eat fresh!

6) Regular physical activity releases endorphins, naturally elevating your mood, which reduces stress and improves self confidence. Give importance to strength training as it improves muscle tone and, in turn, helps in boosting your metabolism.

7) Not all fats are bad. Include healthy fats like nuts, seeds, seed oils or avocado if in season. A good way is to top it on salads or eat them as a snack or mixing in chapati dough. However, low fat doesn’t always mean healthy. Watch out for high sugars which increases the risk of obesity, diabetes and belly fat.

8) Take that much-needed break! Women being the caretakers of the family often tend to forget to take care of themselves. Handing over responsibilities to other family members and indulging in self-care is not selfish. Take time out to exercise and meditate or learn a new skill.

9) Have a positive body image - everybody comes in different shapes and sizes. Accept yourself, and work towards a healthy you.

10) Avoid crash diets - Quick results always have consequences. Understand your food better or get the help of a nutritionist who can help you reach your goals.

How do you stay fit? What are some of the simple things that have worked for you?

[Check out our other articles in this series.]



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