Easy things you can do on a daily basis to live longer!
The ongoing pandemic has brought to the forefront the importance of mental and physical wellness. People have realised that leading a happy and healthy life is the key to living longer. For this reason, we spoke with health experts about easy lifestyle changes we can incorporate into our daily routines to live longer and more fulfilling lives. These are their best insights.
8 best tips from nutritionists and health experts to live longer
1. Follow a sustainable diet plan
Building a sustainable diet is more important than following a strict diet. “No one can stop eating out, not give in to stress eating once in a while, or stop desserts altogether. It’s important to follow a balanced diet 80% of the time and enjoy your weekly meal with dessert and drinks,” says Simran, fitness expert and co-founder, Simvalecha.
“Cut out non-nutritive foods like added sugars and start on limiting sweets. These foods cause inflammation, which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, joint pain, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. Instead, follow sustainable diets rich in fruits and vegetables to stave off diseases and maintain a healthy weight,” states dietician Dr Archana Batra.
2. Stay active
It’s important to not limit your physical activity to that one hour in the gym or park but to stay active all day. “Don’t be seated for over 30 minutes at a time. Get up, stretch, and stay active throughout the day. According to WHO, physical inactivity has been identified as the fourth leading risk factor for mortality,” remarks nutritionist Lovneet Batra.
“Physical exercise and being active throughout the day is the key to a long life. Walking, running, gyming, aerobics, zumba, yoga, it could be any physical activity as per your choice, but the motive is to stay active,” adds Aayushi Lakhapati, nutritionist and co-founder, UpNourish.
3. Maintain a fulfilling social and spiritual life
“It is advisable to stay connected with a community as it not only helps our mental health, but it also helps to improve the quality of our life. Also, a parallel spiritual life is complementary to an overall sense of wellbeing and purpose,” says nutritionist Vinita Contractor.
“The best way to live a longer life is to have a 360° wellness routine that includes a balance of good nutrition, quality sleep, consistent exercise, a good work-life balance, and avenues like spiritual retreats that lead to personal growth. You can only live a longer life if your mind and body both are healthy and happy,” states Raveena Taurani, founder, Yogisattva.
4. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise is not only good for the body but also the brain.
“As we age, we naturally lose muscle mass and function, which can lead to an injury or disability. By exercising regularly, you reduce muscle loss, build bone density and maintain strength. Regular physical activity also improves insulin sensitivity, cardiovascular fitness, mental health and decreases blood pressure and fat levels,” adds Prateek Kumar, founder, FitCru.
“Exercising is among the easiest ways to boost your mood, sleep quality, and energy levels. A well-balanced resistance training program will set you off in the right direction. Be sure to include some mobility as well to keep you agile and injury free in the long term,” remarks Krishna Chandak, co-founder, TEGO.
“Research shows that people with higher muscle mass tend to have improved and longer life spans than those with poor muscle mass. Building muscles also helps prevent injuries that can reduce the quality of life,” says nutritionist Mugdha Pradhan, CEO and founder, iThrive.
5. Practice intermittent fasting
Fasting activates dozens of anti-aging pathways in both our body and brain. “A brain cell’s daily work creates waste products that have to be discarded. When our body goes a stretch of time without food, our cells get the signal that it’s time to clean the house. A few times a week, give them the opportunity to take out the trash by allowing at least 12 hours (gradually building it up to 18) between dinner and your first meal the next day,” states nutritionist Bhakti Kapoor.
6. Eat till you are 80% full
Calorie restriction reduces excess body weight, which is linked to shorter lifespans. “If you eat till you are 80% full, it is harder for you to consume too many calories, which leads to weight gain, obesity and other chronic diseases,” adds Vinita Contractor.
7. Consume protein for breakfast
“Amp up on lean protein, which will rev up your metabolism, help you lose any undesirable weight and stay fit. Protein boosts satiety and each bite promises significant kilo-dropping. You’ll see quick results when you begin your day with a protein-powered breakfast,” remarks Jilani Shaikh, health expert, JS9 Fitness.
8. Get adequate sleep
Sound sleep for 7-8 hours daily will help you live a better life. “Deep sleep promotes cell function and a healthier heart due to a balanced cortisol level. Your stress levels will be comparatively less and you will feel much more productive and energetic during the day because you are getting the required amount of rest,” concludes Harman Virk, co-founder and CEO, Oxie Nutrition.