What to eat when...Secret of good health
A majority of us eat a variety of foods within 24 hours, since the time we wake up to the time we sleep. Breakfast in the morning, lunch at noon, dinner at night is a routine which most of us follow. But some take particular meals at certain timings. Others eat whatever they like, whenever they wish to. But there are certain norms when it comes to eating. Let us see what they are...
There are many factors that help for easy digestion and assimilation of food. For example, a fruit taken in the morning hours might cause indigestion. The same helps in easy digestion when taken in the afternoon. Why this happens is because of the qualities, nutrients, solid and liquid factors and chemicals present in foods. Also the chemicals that are released, the functions and the hormonal changes that occur in the body, influence our eating habits. Some foods give high energy. Several changes might occur due to them. Scientists, along with nutritionists have revealed what to eat when.
It is a fruit that everyone, from the poor to the rich, like very much. Banana has high degree of potassium. It strengthens the immune system and also helps in improving health of the skin. It helps develop muscles. The fibre in bananas improves digestion. It is a natural antacid. Consuming a ripe banana reduces heart burn. Lots of people have bananas after a meal. But it should be avoided after dinner. It will lead to mucus collecting in the lungs and common cold. It should never be consumed during nights. But it has a good effect when eaten in the afternoon. It should be avoided on an empty stomach.
It is common knowledge that 'An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away.' Apple has all the healthy nutrients necessary for the body. It has a fibre called Pectin in abundance. It controls blood sugar and cholesterol. It relieves constipation. It is a considered as a health-giving fruit. But even apple should not be consumed in the night. It increases the acid levels in the body. The action of pectin burdens the digestive system. It also leads to acidity. Apple is best consumed for breakfast, leading to easy digestion.
Don't peel off apple skin
Apple contains 116 calories, 5.4 gms fiber, 239 gms potassium, Vitamin C, 120 IUs of Vitamin A and 4.9 mgm of Vitamin K. When the skin is peeled off, it contains 194 gms of potassium, .2.3 gms fibre, 8.6 mgm. of Vitamin C, 82 IUs of Vitamin A and 1.3 mgm of Vitamin K. When the skin is removed, the valuable vitamins are lost. Apple skin has good medicinal qualities. It has triterpenoids that fight cancer cells and a compound called quercetin that controls breathing problems. That is why an apple a day keeps the lungs functioning well. Also it has been concluded in studies that quercetin improves memory. Ursolic acid in apple skin helps to fight lethargy and inertia.
Rice is staple food in India, especially in the South. Rice is consumed for lunch as well as for dinner. Rice grains are enriched with carbohydrates. They give instant energy. Carbohydrates are necessary for our health. But it is not necessary to take them only through rice. The body cannot use all the carbohydrates derived from rice. Surplus of it is stored as fat, that leads to overweight. Rice should be taken during the day when activity is more. A variety of other cereals should be taken for dinner. Experts said that those who want to reduce weight should take rice just once daily.
Meat contains proteins. It will take at least four to six hours to digest. That is why you should not consume meat at nights. The excess calories derived from meat cannot be spent. With this they deposit as fat. It is better to take meat during the day or afternoon. Grilled, baked light or lean meat can be digested easily.
Badam, pista and walnuts help to control blood pressure. They are good for the health of the heart and brain. But these have more fat and calories. If taken after dinner, they will lead to weight gain. Nutritionists suggest eating four to five nuts in the evening. A fig (anjeer) or apricot can be had early in the morning. This will increase activity. It will lead to gas and indigestion when consumed at nights.
Dark chocolate contains antioxidants. It helps in controlling ageing and maintain youthfulness. It also play a key role in reducing heart diseases. But it should not be taken at any time of day as it would lead to overweight. Only one or two pieces should be taken during morning hours.
Curd help is easy digestion. It is better to take curd during day time. It should not be taken during nights. Ayurveda also suggests that curd should not be taken during the night. Those suffering from frequent cold and coughs and allergy problems, should not take curd during nights. Mucus gets collected in the lungs. The cold and cough problems intensify.
It is most convenient to consume them during the morning hours. You must avoid sweets completely in the evening. Insulin works on sugar actively during the day time. Because of activity during the day, sugar in the body is used up. But the situation is different in the night. The body does not need much sugar. Sweets taken during nights will not be used up. This will turn in to fat and lead to body weight. Also it leads to indigestion.
Cream cake (Junnu)
Should be taken during morning hours. It is a good product for vegetarians. It strengthens as well as controls fat to a certain extent. Also , it reduces gastric problems. If taken at night, it leads to indigestion and overweight.
You should take milk in the morning only if you are very active in the morning. Otherwise, by consuming milk, the stomach feels full. With this, you cannot consume rice. There is a change in meal timings. Warm milk taken during bedtime, will relax the body and gives good sleep.
Any kind of exercise is a stress on the muscles. Muscles strengthen due to exercise. At that time, if muscles have to be built well, proper nutrients are necessary. That is why the carbohydrates and protein ratio in breakfast, after exercise should be 2:1. This is for mild exercises. For those doing medium and heavy exercise with lot of stress, the ratio should be 3:1, as carbohydrates will replenish glycogen, which is a stored in the form of glucose for energy. Proteins play a key role in building muscles.
After a long meeting...
Some meetings begin at sometime in the morning and end at 6 p.m. in the evening. This involves a lot of stress. After such long meetings it is essential to take some almonds. They replenish some good fat and protein. The latter activate living cells. But sugary items should not be taken. These will produce carbohydrates and glucose. The brain becomes active. But protein helps to remember and recall what happened at the meeting. Tyrocin, a neuro transmitter is produced from amino acids that are a part of proteins. They help in giving energy to the brain as well as remaining alert. Always focus on replenishing glycogen after any strenuous work where you are sweating. That is why products with carbohydrates, vitamins and little protein, should be taken after running and other such strenuous exercises.
What to take for good sleep?
When you don't sleep well in the night, it is normal to feel weak and tired. According to studies by researchers, because of lack of sleep at night, gorlin increases and leptin decreases, during the day. With this you will feel hungry and will like to eat. Such people should take 30 gm of nuts. Or they should take lean meat. This reduces the hunger. Banana mixed with curd is also a good solution.
What to take when awake at night
If you haven't slept at night, due to some work or consumption of alcohol, you will have a heavy head. This is time to take some tomato juice. The water and electrolytes that have been lost will be replenished.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Many do not know about the exact timings of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Nutrition experts said that half-an-hour after waking is the best time for breakfast. This should be approximately 7 a.m. If breakfast is delayed, it is not good for health. After 10 p.m., it is not advisable.
Afternoon between 12.45 to 1 p.m. is good for lunch. There should be a gap of at least four hours between breakfast and lunch. Lunch is not advisable after 4 p.m. Dinner should be completed at 7 p.m. There should be a gap of at least three hours before going to bed. Do not postpone dinner to later than 10 p.m. If you take a late dinner, there will be less time between dinner and bedtime. If you sleep after eating, the quality of sleep is affected.
What you eat and when also affects weight. Many of us take heavy breakfast items, like idly, puri etc., for lunch. But experts state that is an unhealthy habit.
Do not miss breakfast
Medical experts suggest that you should not avoid breakfast. Those who do not take breakfast run the risk of 27 per cent increased chances of heart attack or life threatening disease. If you avoid breakfast, you hunger increases. You will have a heavy lunch. This will increase blood sugar levels. This creates stress on the heart.
What to take in the morning, afternoon, night
The food that is taken in the morning controls the blood sugar levels throughout the day. Blood sugar increases slowly and decreases gradually, when whole grain, little fat and protein are taken. Refined and sugary foods shoot up blood glucose levels and drop suddenly to a low level. With this hunger increases. Junk food is consumed as a result. Oat meal is best to be consumed in the morning to keep blood sugar levels even. An omelette, spinach or Avocado can be taken.
Traditionally breakfast should be king sized, lunch like a prince and dinner less than both these, according to researchers. But scientists said that because the body needs more calories during the day between morning and afternoon, breakfast and lunch should be adequate. Dinner should be frugal because nights are meant for relaxation. Those who are forced to have less for lunch and more for dinner, should make sure that dinner is made of low-calorie food, experts said. Vegetables and salad should be consumed more.
While nearing bedtime, more carbohydrates in food will lead to increased blood sugar and insulin levels. Sleep will not come after this. Even if you sleep, it will not be of a good quality. Do not take any other foods after dinner. Some people are used to have sweet desserts like ice cream from the fridge, after dinner. This is very dangerous. Sugar levels will rise abnormally. The hormone called melatonin will reduce. This hormone actually induces sleep conditions like relaxation or tiredness. If this is reduced, the signals to the brain will not be clear and you cannot sleep even if you want to.
Morning between 6 to 7
Everyone knows that rising up early is good for health. By taking a glass of water after waking, between 6 and seven in the morning, the water levels in the body will be balanced. Lifespan of an individual is at least two-and-a-half times more among Japanese than those in any other country in the world. Most Japanese drink two glasses of water after waking. Water not only relaxes the chronic muscle aches, but also controls cancer growth.
At 7 a.m
By taking breakfast within half-an-hour of waking, living cells will be activated. As the stomach is full, the mind does not go after other foods.
Between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.
This is a good time to eat your favorite chocolate. A lot of carbohydrates and sugar will reach the body. Tel Aviv University researchers said that it is the right time to have sweets. It activates the cells.
Coffee at 10 a.m
Many have bed coffee early in the morning. But researchers say that the time between 10 a.m. to afternoon is good for tea or coffee. The body gets used to the caffeine when tea or coffee are taken early in the morning. It reduces the cortisol hormone, that activates glucose in the body. That is why morning 10 and 2 to 4 in the afternoon is best time to have tea or coffee.
Is dieting good for health
It may be for religious purpose or for weight loss...whatever the reason, dieting is very unhealthy. If not the regular meal, something should be consumed instead. Without food, the sugar levels in blood will fall drastically. Breakfast is very important and should not be missed. Hunger increases because of this and there are chances of intake of more calories. Those who want to lose weight, should stop dieting and distribute their meals to six times a day, instead of three, experts suggest.
Maintain a diary
The daily menu should be incorporated into a diary, experts advice. This will make us aware of how much we are eating. With this, there will be control on eating.