We all want to be healthy and adopt practices that improve our overall well-being, yet due to our hectic lifestyles and stress, we may be ignoring certain health basics that could go a long way in achieving out fitness goals. Eating less is one of the biggest mistakes we make in our weight loss journey that leaves us tired, lethargic and with nutritional deficiencies. While we look for diet supplements, we do not really make use of local foods like certain pulses, vegetables and proteins that are excellent sources of protein, good fats and complex carbs. Due to our busy lives, we may also skip checking the food labels that has the ingredients list, the nutrition facts, and other important information. Including wrong foods in your diet can do much more harm than we can imagine. (Also read: World’s biggest socio-economic risk: Ignoring nutrition’s role in achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals)
On the occasion of World Nutrition Day, that is observed every year on May 28, Nutritionist and Gut Health expert Avantii Deshpaande talks about top diet mistakes we might be making.
1. Don’t just count calories: This is one of the biggest mistakes. Carbs, proteins and fats are the three sources from where we get calories to keep us healthy and active. A lot of times, especially when you trying to lose weight you could simply eat less in the day thinking the lesser the better in terms of weight loss. But remember, you might end up feeling tired and lethargic due to deficiencies. So, you can still keep up the existing calories and change the combinations of the food groups focusing on protein, good fats and complex carbs.
2. Not eating local foods: In Rome do as the Romans do. The soil, weather conditions, geographical location decide the kind of produce. The local fruits, vegetables and the staples like pulses and millets or grains have the best of nutrients for that season and the body can absorb and utilize it better.
3. Not eating well during the 8 hours window of intermittent fasting: Intermittent fasting has several benefits which will help the body heal and repair itself. But it’s also important that you nourish your body well in the 8 hours window of eating. Even if you are following a two meals pattern ensure that you eat by the healthy plate method – including vegetables, protein, good fats and complex carbs and add a probiotic. There are chances that you could develop deficiencies otherwise.
4. Make sudden changes in the diet: When we look at achieving a health goal often taking shortcuts looks a doable way. But fad diets have short-lived effects if you are not going to be able to adapt to these changes over a longer period. Often when you make sudden changes in the diets there could be chances of developing gastric issues, hair fall or skin worries. One diet does not fit all, so it’s best to make small doable changes in the existing diet and see consistent results over a period of time.
5. Not reading labels well: We all have to rely on processed foods at some point in time. Several diet foods are there in the super stores which are meant for specific health conditions. But be careful. Educate yourself to read the labels well before you make purchases – the ingredients list, the nutrition facts, any particular ingredients that could trigger allergies should be mentioned on the label so be smart and choose the products well.