From fat to fit – In conversation with Chamara Kasthuriarchchi (lean_lk) 0 885

How does healthy eating affect your life?

From Fat to FitChamara, who is a diet, workout and nutrition consultant with many years of experience and has transformed many number of people from ‘fat to fit’, explains how healthy eating affects our body and mind.

I know that many of us love to eat fast food, but it catches up with us in the long run. While eating healthy would stop you from getting sick, and lower the cost of health care, healthy eating can enrich your body and prevent you from getting high doctor bills.

Eating healthy can be a challenge, Are you up to it?

Fat to Fit - 03

Taking care of your health should be a priority for every individual – and it is critically important for anyone struggling with obesity or diseases. Without good health life can be very difficult. For those who are naturally healthy, it is easy to ignore healthy eating habits because they tend to believe they are invisible. But, poor eating habits will catch up with you eventually.
Now is the time to pay attention and make necessary changes; As you search the web for the best foods to eat to build and sustain a healthy body, the answers may sound fairly simple – eat only foods that are good for your body. In fact, isn’t that a non-brainer?

But then, eating anything has its limits, anything excess is bad for the body, lifestyle advice should be appropriate, safe and effective. Everyone understands that proper nutrition is not only control of the calories and endless diet, but a complete diet, which must contain all the necessary products; meat, cereal, dairy, fruits and vegetables. People need to avoid ‘harmful’ biscuits, chocolate, semis and sugary sodas in large quantities. Often we eat what comes to hand: something we can buy and quickly reheat in the microwave. Sometimes there is no time to identify whether the product is harmful.

The main criterion of choice in food are tasty, fast, satisfying and cheap.Healthy lifestyle is a daily package of measures, which consists of a proper balance diet, exercise, avoiding harmful habits, a positive and balance view of the world. Healthy people wanting to lead a healthy life do not necessarily go to a dietitian and buy huge amounts of books on nutrition, which sometimes are frustrating and confusing. In order to feed themselves and their families with healthy and proper food, it is enough to follow a few rules of modern dietetics.

The most important rule is that, it is necessary to maximize enriching the meals we eat. It is desirable to increase the use of vegetables and fruits – then your body will not have a vitamin deficiency. Also it is necessary to reduce the amount of animal fats, partially replacing them with vegetable oils. Limit consumption of pure sugar and salt. It is better to substitute confectionery sweets with honey and dried fruits, salt – with spices.

Sticking to a healthy diet is very simple. To do this you need:

  • Learn how to cook healthy food.
  • Follow a few simple rules of eating.
  • Eat only fresh, healthy foods.

The main rules of healthy eating you should try to follow are;

  • Reduce animal fats.
  • Eat more foods rich in saturated fatty acids such as Omega 3 (red fish, vegetable oils, nuts).
  • Eat foods that contain fibre (cereal, vegetable, fruits, and dried fruits).
  • Eat freshly prepared dishes.
  • Do not fry in butter and completely eliminate margarine from the diet.
  • Abandon overly salty foods.
  • Instead of full cream milk use milk products (kefir, yogurt, fermented milk)
  • Meat, fish, poultry must be freshly cooked.
  • Every day eat a fresh vegetable salad or fresh fruit salad.

From my own experience I know that in order to follow the rules of a healthy diet, I need to limit eating the following foods: salt, sugar, smoked and fried food, fatty pork, pastry products, canned and preserved foods. Of course a complete rejection of harmful products require a huge effort of will. But a bad mood can become better after a piece of cake – do not worry. Stress is much more dangerous for the body than a piece of cake. Try to live without stress, in harmony with yourself – it is another important rule that shapes our healthy lifestyle.

The role of healthy food in a person’s life cannot be overstated. Almost all our health problems originate from the inability or unwillingness to organize regular diet. Healthy diet combined with regular exercise, reduces the risk of chronic disease and disorders such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pleasure and cancer.
Eat right, and the results will not keep you waiting!

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Secrets to Living a Happier Life 0 1009

Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne
Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne

Our brains are focused on survival. Anything more than that, you have to work for it.

There’s an unfortunate reason why happiness is often elusive – our brains simply aren’t wired that way. Instead, our brains have evolved to survive, to protect ourselves, to keep us safe. Sure, we have moments of elation and periods of contentment and bliss. But many of us are plagued with persistent negative emotions – we are just plain stuck in the “blahs.”

How do we find more joy in our life? Like anything else, it takes practice to cultivate ongoing happiness. In a sense, we have to reset our baseline. It won’t happen overnight, but here are some things you can do every day to discover the secrets of being happier.

Focus on the positive

To find long-term happiness, you need to retrain your brain from a negative mindset to a positive mindset. Try these things: Spend one to two minutes looking for positives in your life. Do this three times a day for 45 days, and your brain will start doing it automatically.

Choose a positive mantra for the day — something you will repeat to yourself, such as “Today is beautiful” or “I feel grateful for all I have”. And when things go sour, take a moment to try and see it from a positive light. Never under estimate the importance of recognizing the silver linings in life.

Celebrate little victories

Life is full of ups and downs, but in between we have a lot of little victories that go unnoticed. Take a moment to celebrate these small wins.

Did you check off all the things on your ‘To-do’ list that you’ve been procrastinating on? Yay! Did you finally clear out the thousand emails that have been filling up your inbox? Woohoo! Take pleasure in these little achievements. They add up!

Find your work–life balance

Work takes up a lot of our day, but it shouldn’t be the only thing we do. It’s important to pursue activities and interests beyond our job. Do you have a hobby? Are you spending time with friends and loved ones? Are you getting exercise? Creating balance in your life will reduce stress and give you other outlets to express yourself and have fun.

Practice mindfulness

Mindfulness mediation, works by bringing your awareness and attention to the present moment. It’s about being non-judgmental and accepting how you are feeling. Practicing mindfulness means being present, aware and curious. Accepting what we are going through decreases stress and helps us see situations for what they are. Through mindfulness, we can find peace and affirmation in ourselves.

Celebrate little victories

You may think of artists as being moody and depressed but studies show that engaging in creative activities on a regular basis actually makes you happier. Those who spend time using their imagination and being creative have more enthusiasm and are more likely to have feelings of long-term happiness and well-being. Such creative activities can include writing, painting, drawing and musical performance.

Accept imperfection

Many of us strive for perfection – we desire to push ourselves to be our best. But in order to be truly happy, you must embrace the imperfection that is part of life. Perfection is impossible, and holding ourselves and others to these standards is futile. We will always end up feeling let down. Accept that life is imperfect and recognize that there is beauty and grace in that imperfection.

‘’Don’t waste the best years of your life in a joyless job’’

Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne
Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne

Do what you love

It’s pretty hard to maintain happiness if you hate your job. Don’t waste the best years of your life in a joyless job, even if it’s paying the bills. What are you interested in? What are you truly passionate about? Focus on building a career in an area that motivates you and will provide you with a high level of satisfaction, and your happiness factor will go up exponentially.

Spend wisely

It’s tempting to believe that the more money you have the happier you’ll be. But the reality is, it’s how you spend your money that helps you feel happier. The key is to do it wisely. Spending money on experiences — travel, dining, and concerts and so on — can make us happier because we are sharing those experiences with others. Happiness connected to material possessions fades, but experiences help us define our purpose and passions in life.

Live in the moment

Our thoughts and feelings often revolve around the past or the future. Reality is what you are experiencing at this very moment; what you are going through right now. Sometimes we want to escape that reality. But when we stay in the present, we are fully engaged in our lives. Endeavor to live in the moment, and you’ll begin to have a deeper appreciation for your life.

Cultivate gratitude

Find ways to cultivate gratitude on a daily basis. Giving thanks and being grateful for all you have will make you happier and more content. Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what you have received in life. Those gifts may be tangible or intangible. When you spend time each day acknowledging all that is good in life, you’ll see there is more good than you realize, and you’ll find that sadness, anxiety and depression are diminished.

‘’Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what you have received in life’’

Give back

Be generous with your time and your money. Give to others in need. Give to those you love and care for. Those who give back have a sense of selflessness and humanitarianism. Those who are generous in spending money on others tend to have good health, perhaps because giving has a feel-good effect that lowers blood pressure and stress.

Surprise yourself

It’s hard to feel happy if you are bored or feeling blah about life. Part of feeling happy is feeling stimulated, interested and a little surprised by life. So surprise yourself by setting goals outside your comfort zone. Put yourself in new or unexpected situations. Set goals for yourself and then work to achieve them. And remember to enjoy the ride!

Listen to and engage with music                      

Listening to music lifts our spirits. It makes us feel better, in part because listening to music causes our brains to release dopamine, a neurochemical connected to pleasure and reward. Those who engage with music through dance or through attending concerts report high levels of happiness and a sense of well-being.

You, be you

One of the best things you can do to boost your happiness is to just be yourself. That means not being dependent on the approval of others, but accepting yourself for who you are. Spend some time getting to know yourself. What defines you? What do you believe in? Who are you, underneath it all? Search for ways to be comfortable in your own skin.

Hang out with happy people

Ever hang out with a gloomy person and leave feeling bummed? That’s because moods can be contagious. It turns out that feelings can be transferred from one person to another, and the more we share experiences with one another, the more our emotions and behaviors become synchronized. One secret to long-term happiness is surrounding yourself with others who are also happy.

Nothing compares to you

Stop comparing yourself to everyone around you. Most importantly, stop comparing your things to all the things everyone else has. Social media has a way of making us feel like everyone else has it better than us. How often does scrolling through your newsfeed make you feel negative emotions? Allowing envy and resentment to take root, robs us of appreciating what we have.

‘’Constantly worrying about everything creates toxic anxiety’’

Stop worrying

Constantly worrying about everything creates toxic anxiety, where your mind is steeped in negative, spiraling thoughts. Worries plague your mind and make you afraid and apprehensive about things you often have no control over. Sometimes we believe that if we worry enough, we can keep bad things from happening. But the truth is, you cannot experience joy or even contentment when you’re consumed by worry.

Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne
Akna Goonaratne University of Deikin, Melbourne

Build meaningful relationships

Happiness, love, friendship and community go hand in hand. As humans, we have a fundamental need to interact and connect with others. We naturally seek our tribe – the people who will support us, understand us and be there for us through life’s roller-coaster ride. Without meaningful relationships, we are lonely and isolated. We’re happier when we pursue happiness with others.

Spend time in nature

Some researchers believe that today’s ultra-wired generation is actually suffering from a nature-deficit disorder. Studies have shown that the more time we spend in nature, and the more we relate to the natural world around us, the greater our sense of happiness. Our connection to nature also plays a role in maintaining positive mental health

Reminisce over happy memories

Why do we love all things retro? Perhaps because nostalgia makes us happy. Nostalgic feelings, or reminiscing about our past, can help us reconnect with feelings of love and a sense of wonder and fulfillment. Our past shapes us and defines our identity. When we remember good times and happy memories, we can increase our self-confidence and feel closer to those around us.

Article by: Chantal D.

It’s Time for Professional Societies to Be Bold and Wise 0 1064

Boldness is a leadership trait to be mastered. Here are actions that make bold people admirable.

The day I went off to university, a friend gave me this quote. Over the years it has inspired me and I have seen it posted on the walls and bulletin boards of many entrepreneurs and leaders.

Bold people stand out from the group. They are confident, courageous, and directed. I believe there is boldness in most people. Given the right set of circumstances, many will take action to better the world around them.

People who choose to be bold are inspiring not just because they get big things accomplished, but because they also instigate growth, progress, and movement for themselves and others around them. Sadly, far more people wait for someone who is bold to lead the way, hoping somehow luck will shine success upon them.

Perhaps it is time to unleash the bold leader in you. Try adding these actions to your daily repertoire and see how much faster the magic of boldness takes you toward success.

01. They own their flaws and strengths. There is a difference between boldness and carelessness. Bold leaders have strong self-awareness. They know when they should take bold action and when they are out of their element. They minimize the risk for themselves and others by constantly reassessing themselves and engaging others to accommodate for personal weakness.

Want to be a bold leader?

Be more self-aware. Engage others who can complement your strengths and compensate for your weaknesses.

02. They keep clear priorities. Someone who constantly jumps into action without a plan is not bold- just foolish. Bold people know their objectives and prioritize them clearly. They can afford to be bold because they can recognize the right opportunity when it comes along.

Want to be a bold leader?

Know clearly what you need to accomplish and seek those changes that will move the team forward. Avoid unimportant activities that lead to distraction.

03. They speak up. Bold people are not necessarily loud or boisterous, but when they have something to say they say it. More importantly, they understand when and how to say it. Being bold does not equal being a bully or a loudmouth. Bold leaders must be better at tact and empathy because the very nature of their words will carry power and impact. Bold leaders also understand that silence is often the greatest statement one can make, and they use it judiciously.

Want to be a bold leader?

Say what needs to be said before the silence derails the team.

04. They pair action with knowledge. Even though bold leaders are prone to action, they are rarely considered rash. They apply the same sense of action to learning and due diligence as they do to any other activity. Bold leaders want to make sure their actions lead to success, so they investigate before leading their team to the charge.

Want to be a bold leader?

Improve your odds of success by doing your homework. You’ll increase your confidence and your success rate.

05. They accept the value of failure. No one is totally comfortable with failure, but bold leaders understand that greater rewards stem from greater risk. Still, they know how to mitigate catastrophic risk and how to protect their team. Bold leaders also know how to use risks to their advantage. They harness the energy and adrenaline and make sure that every failure is a learning opportunity.

Want to be a bold leader?

Make failure an acceptable part of your process. Teach the team how to assess and limit risk, so missteps can happen without total destruction. Then get people to learn and reboot.

06. They make the most of small wins. Many people sit and wait around for the “right opportunity” before they are willing to step up and take action. Sadly, sometimes that right opportunity never comes. Bold people understand that rarely is any situation perfect from the beginning. They look to make the most of any given set of circumstances that can lead to victory, even a small one. Cumulatively, consistent little wins spell success, attracting followers.

Want to be a bold leader?

Start with a small battle you think you can win, map out a plan, and take the field. Winning builds confidence as well as your reputation.

07. They build momentum. Bold people recognize that a single victory is not enough to sustain leadership. They work to create a series of actions that help the team gather confidence, speed, and power. They have a sense of when to add energy to drive forward and when to let the momentum itself carry things forward efficiently.

Want to be a bold leader?

Craft your plan so that each action takes advantage of the success from the last. Take advantage of any win that gains attention, respect, and popularity. Activate your fans, cultivate relationships, build buzz. Don’t coast!

By: Chantal D.