lifestyle: Gujaratis, it’s time to eat healthy and get moving | News

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lifestyle: Gujaratis, it’s time to eat healthy and get moving | News

lifestyle: Gujaratis, it's time to eat healthy and get moving | News

What’s on your mind? No, it is not about your Facebook or WhatsApp status. It is about what do you think w hen you wake up on a week day? And most importantly, do you act on your thoughts?

The resolution to not look at your mobile as soon as you wake up and instead go for that morning run, do yoga and take a perfect home-cooked healthy breakfast goes for a toss. Reason: You wake up late after binge watching your favourite soaps or hanging out with your fr

iends till late night. You are in a hurry to reach your office so either you skip your breakfast or gorge on oil and soda loaded
cholafali or
gota at the

A recent study carried out by cardiologists at a leading city based hospital has revealed that the average age of a Gujarati’s hearts was 10 years older than their chronological age! The study was conducted on 2,500-odd healthy Gujaratis with no history of major illness.



“Gujaratis have a high incidence of diabetes. Many of them lead a sedentary life and the consumption of fat and sugar is high. Besides continuous stress, peer pressure, regularly consuming processed food with high trans acid lead to obstruction in the arteries, increasing one’s chance of heart attack,” says Dr Tejas M Patel.

On heart attacks becoming increasingly common, cardiac surgeon Dr Nitin Jain, says, “We call it the big four. Family history or genetics, diabetes, smoking and high BP are the four major factors responsible for the coronary artery disease (heart attack). Habits like resorting to junk food or tobacco consumption that set in at the age of 17 or 18, manifest in the form of severe cardiac problems by the time one reaches 30 or 35.” Elaborating, he said, “Both high BP and carbon monoxide from smoke damages the wall of artery leading to deposition of cholesterol that obstructs blood flow to heart. Similarly, tobacco leads to thickening of blood delaying the time it takes in reaching the heart. Thus smoking and tobacco are directly linked to heart attack.”

The most common myth is that women cannot get heart attack. “Though female ho rmones like progesterone and estrogen help reduce blockage in the arteries, nowadays even young women are experiencing heart attacks. After menopause, females are equally vulnerable towards heart attack as that of men. One should always keep a soluble aspirin and take it in case of a heart attack besides immediately seeking medical help,” says Dr Tejas M Patel.


If you are the one whose supermarket cart is always filled with packaged, ready to eat, frozen, quick fix meals or cold drinks, artificial juices,
sing bhujiya,
sev mamra, diet
khakra, potato chips besides biscuits and breads (including wheat, oat and multigrain which you think are healthy) then think twice.

“All processed food is bad. Be it
maida, trans fat (found in bakery products), sugar or juice.
Maida has no nutritional value. Whatever the packaging says, some amount of preservatives are added. Juice removes all the fibre from fruit which is essential for body. One should opt freshly cut fruits instead,” says dietitian Paheli Bhatt.

Healthy eating is not as hard as you think. “
Daliya and
khichdi with lots of veggies are a quick healthy option besides
dal dhokli.
Besan- based dishes are a rich source of protein but they should be cooked with less oil. Whatever you make, be it
dhokla or
handva, use
dal, rice and
methi instead of
suji and mix lots of vegetables,” she says.


If you think ordering salads is a healthy option, it’s not. “You don’t know for how long the veggies were cut and kept in the open. If you love your heart and yourself, remember the key that is mindful, homecooked, balanced and nutrition-laced eating. Never ignore the fact that some fats are essential for the functioning of joints and vital organs. Putting lots of oil while preparing
khakhra or
bhakri is bad but putting
ghee on
chapati is ok,” she said.

Other healthy habits include not sleeping or lying down immediately after dinner but go for a walk or indulge in a physical activity. Have a five-course meal. Eat light and frequently. Avoid junk food and burn your calories.


Exercise is the best way to stay fit. “Cardio exercises are the be st as they help strengthen the heart. Regular breathing exercises or
pranayama can work wonders. If you can go for jogging, aerobics or hit a treadmill for 10 to 20 minutes, it’s also nice. If you have had a heart attack in the past, make sure that you inform your trainer so that he can guide you accordingly for the cardio workout,” said fitness trainer Abhishek Dikhit.


Even if you cannot take time out for exercise, just make sure that you go for a walk for at least 20 minutes in a day. It can even be from your home to college or office and vice versa. Ditch your smoke emitting, traffic adding two or fourwheeler in the times of high fuel price and grab that good old bicycle. You will not only help save the environment but it would definitely be a ride towards a healthy and a happy heart.

So, the answer lies in eating healthy and saying goodbye to sedentary lifestyle.

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