Saturday, April 30, 2011

Are you skipping meals?

In today's world, hectic lifestyles have triggered a host of health related issues. Some of these directly relate to our eating habits. The most common thing to do on a busy day is to skip breakfast and postpone lunch. Irregular meal timings and skipping meals have become commonplace.
Occasionally, skipping a meal is okay and does not have any major effect on the body. However making it a regular habit is bound to trigger some negative changes in our metabolism. The body tries to adjust to this irregularity by lowering the BMR(basal metabolic rate) and conserving energy by storing the food.  

Why do we skip meals?
The most common reason cited for this is "Lack of time": Too much work, too little time is an oft repeated excuse. This is like saying that you don’t have time to fill the fuel tank as you are too busy driving. My suggestion for the super-busy is - "Don’t skip breakfast" .
You are eating after an entire night’s fast and the first meal of the day will sustain you through the day.

How to make sure that you are as regular as possible for your meals? I hope the tips below will help:

a. Wrap paranthas(Indian version of pancakes)/wraps in foil and eat on your way to office.

b. Pack your sandwiches the night before and just eat them on your desk with your regular cup of tea/coffee. Some easy sandwiches are bread with spreads like cheese, jam, marmalade, ketchup or any other spread you like. Make sure to use whole wheat bread.

c. Boiled eggs can be made in a jiffy and are ideal for your mornings

d. Keep a jar of munchies handy to eat on the move. These can be mixed nuts (walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, raisins), a mix of roasted chana(whole gram), puffed rice and ground gur (jaggary) or roasted mungphali (peanuts/groundnuts).

e. If you have no time to cook,you can opt for readymade cereal with milk, fruits and honey.

f. Carry a fruit in the bag for hunger pangs.

g. Down a cup of plain milk (full cream)or a milkshake, if you know that you might not get lunch.

h. Buy a lassi(sweetened buttermilk)/ chaach(salted buttermilk)/ flavored milk/ juice (all of which are available in disposable packs) from the nearby dairy on your way, or better; stock them at home and grab one on your way out.

Other reasons for missing meals include dieting, parties and eating disorders. To know more about them watch out for my next post.

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