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Too often, a patient will ask how they can transform their health. They want a quick fix or a prescription, but I tell them there’s a better way to get what they want: nutrition and exercise.
My explanation that follows is:
There are 6 Basic Nutrients:
1. CARBOHYDRATES: need to comprise approximately half your daily intake. Complex carbs are necessary: potato, whole grain bread, red or brown rice, & whole wheat pasta.
2. PROTEIN: should make roughly 25% of total calories each day.
3. FATS: are the remaining 25%
4. VITAMINS & (5) MINERALS: generally ubiquitous. America’s obsession with supplements is astonishing! Only a few medical conditions necessitate them, such as surgical removal of a portion of the bowel, for instance, which would normally participate in the absorption of these
6. WATER : Drink away! Sip throughout the day & track it. Goal is to keep urine clear-looking (as opposed to a concentrated yellow). Try fruit-infused water if you’re having trouble.
But that’s not all we need to remember when it comes to nutrition. Here are 4 different principles I also ask that my patients follow:
Ultimately, everything in excess gets converted into fat. So fat alone does not make you fat but overeating in general does (portion sizes matter!), as will having a stressful lifestyle.
I concede there is controversy around dairy products but until the debate is settled, a daily omelette (with feta cheese, spinach and sun-dried tomatoes!), and whole milk (instead of the skimmed versions) are just fine.
Aside from great nutrition, it’s also important to exercise. In order to do that:
For some extra nutritional suggestions, I tell my patients to try:
Finally, introducing variations in dietary intake and exercise programs are key to break monotony.
Try to love this habit of healthful behaviors, and find a support system (spouse, family, friends), in order to sustain it long-term, like your life depends on it! Because, it really does.
Dr. Topiwala, MD FACE, Endocrinologist
Dr. Topiwala is a guest writer for InCrowd.
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