Healthy lifestyle leads to a healthy heart. While healthy eating and regular exercising are important for heart health, it is equally necessary to look at your overall lifestyle and understand the small changes you can make to lead a healthier life.

Saffolalife recommends healthy lifestyle habits that are easy to adopt and will support you in the journey towards a healthier heart.

How to be Active at Work?

It is important to be active at work all the time, usually a life of a sedentary man involves working in the office from 9:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

Here are some of the action points to help you keep active and healthy…

01During lunch time or free time, try to play table tennis minimum 15 minutes and burn upto 63kcal. (Dietary Guidelines: A Manual, 2011)

02A common cause of dry eyes or focusing fatigue happens due to condition called computer eye strain. To reduce your risk of tiring your eyes by constantly focusing on your screen, look away from your computer at least every 20 minutes and gaze at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds. Eye doctors commonly call it as "20-20-20 rule." Looking far away relaxes the focusing muscle inside the eye to reduce fatigue.4

03Take a staircase instead of an elevator. Or get out of the lift a few floors early, and then use the stairs. Walk around the office. Climbing stairs helps burn double the calories as compared to merely standing in the lift. (4.8kcal/min vs. 2.3kcal/min)1

04Go for a walk after lunch for 15– 30 minutes. It is been observed that walking for 15 – 30 minutes shortly after each meal improved daily blood sugar levels to a greater extent. Slow Walking also helps to burn calories approx. 2.8 kcal/min.1,3

05Try to involve yourself in any of the fun activity conducted by the company.

06If you have work with any of your colleague, try to go to their desk and avoid calling or emailing. Slow Walking also helps to burn calories approx. 2.8 kcal/min.1

07Do not ask the help boy to refill your bottle, try to refill your bottle or glass by walking to the refill area. This keeps you alert and hydrated throughout the day.

08Give Your Hands a Break, in that time – try doing a hand stretch exercise – it will help relieve the stress from your hands and fingers, making them relaxed.

09Keep splashing water on the face and eyes, to reduce dryness of your eyes.

10Get your own cup of coffee/tea from the cafeteria. This will enable you to burn those extra calories and walking per se helps to burn approx.2.8kcal/min. 1

11Sitting whole day or for 5 to 6 hours at a stretch cab ne risk and contribute to life-threatening ailments. Excessive sitting slows the metabolism, burning approximately 50 fewer calories per hour than standing, which reduces your body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, blood pressure, and metabolize fat, as well as causing weaker muscles and bones. 6

How to eat better at work?

It is important to be active at work all the time, usually a life of a sedentary man involves working in the office from 9:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

01 Appropriate Timings etc:
It is important to consume small meals every two hours. If it’s a challenge to meet this expectation, then try to consume after every 4 hours. There should not be more than 4 hours of gap between the major meal. (Breakfast and Lunch)

02 Healthy Eating Habits
Do not skip breakfast to reach office on time, carry it with you or have it in the canteen. Breakfast helps replenish your blood sugar to make your muscles and brain work which is usually low in the mornings. Hence, it is rightly called “Break” the “Fast”

Carry your own lunch and avoid consuming canteen made food. Give a challenge to yourself and begin with one-day home lunch to later reaching to 7 days a week.

To combat the cravings and avoid overeating, keep a few small packets of nuts or fruits at your desk and avoid binging on high fat foods like vada pav, samosa etc.

Make a habit of cutting down 1 cigarette a day. It gives unnecessary stress to your organs.

In the evenings, limit the consumption of sugar and unhealthy processed foods like chips, biscuits, instead consume 1 fistful of peanuts or chana or a fruit.

Store your desk with dry healthy snacks like peanut, roasted chana, khakhras etc.

Limit the consumption of alcohol.

Do not eat your meal in haste, give time for your lunch and allow it to digest properly.

03 Water HabitsWater accounts for 70% of our body weight. It is a constituent of blood and other vital body fluids. Water plays a key role in elimination of body wastes and regulation of body temperature. The body loses water through sweat, urine and faeces. This loss must be constantly made good with clean and potable water. Apart from this, it also helps to

  • Carries nutrients and oxygen to the cells
  • Provides moisture to the skin and other tissues
  • Helps prevent constipation
  • Cushions joints
  • Helps strengthen muscles
  • Prevents dehydration1

It is free of calories and contains no cholesterol and sodium…
It is important for an average healthy adult to consume at least 8 glasses of water on a daily basis and this quantity needs to be increased during the summer and exercise.

Tips for drinking more water

Drink a glass of water as soon as you get up every day.

Enjoy water breaks after every 45 – 1 hour. Keep a target to sip in 1 litre of water before lunch and 1 litre post lunch.

Always have a habit to drink one glass of water 30 minutes before the meal.

Do not consume water immediately after any meal, it may lead to digestive discomfort. Drink it after 30 minutes of the meal.

If you have habit of sipping carbonated beverages at meal times, try replacing it with water. 56 studies have shown that drinking water lowers energy intake when drinking water is compared with the same volume of a caloric beverage. The effect is observed when drinking water is compared with various carbohydrate solutions, 100% juice, sweetened milk, unsweetened milk, soda and alcoholic beverages.10

Keep a cup of water on your desk to sip on while you work.

Drink water before, during and after physical activity. It will replenish the lost fluids immediately.

Do not wait until you are thirsty to drink water; stay hydrated all day long.

How to better manage stress?

Stress is something comes without knocking your doors and we need to be prepared for it. It is important to understand the root of the stress and try resolving it, but to keep one calm and composed is the key to manage the stress.

Here are some of the action points to help you keep active and healthy…

01Ensure to have at least 6 to 8 hours of sleep every day. Sleep deprivation has a detrimental effect on the cognitive performance.12

02Perform desk yoga every day for 15 minutes. This might include doing pranayama/breathing exercise. Deep breathing is one of the best ways to lower stress in the body. This is because when you breathe deeply, it sends a message to your brain to calm down and relax. The brain then sends this message to your body11

03Speak to your loved one’s for 10 – 15 minutes, seek their advice, it will help to reduce stress by sharing your concern and helps to get the fresh perspective by keeping the connection.12

04Set aside time for activities you enjoy — such as reading, socializing or pursuing a hobby. Giving me time, helps to calm your brain and help reduce daily stress triggers and meet the challenges head on.

05Talk with trusted colleagues or friends about the issues you're facing at work.

06Focus on your work and the timelines. Meeting the timelines, will definitely make you feel good.

Eg. Punjabi Samosa, Pakoda-s, Vada-Pav, Medu Vada, Dahi vada, Golgappe, Pav-Bhaji, Tava-Pulav, Paneer-Bhurji, Chole-Bhature, Ice-cream, Kulfi.

Sweetmeats like Gulab Jamun, Jalebi, Rabdi, Fried Cicken, Sarson-ka-Saag, Stuffed Parotha and such foods.