The simple mantra to fitness is to synchronize healthy lifestyle, exercise and nutrition!  Being physically active, throughout the day, can help you to not just maintain a healthy weight, sleep better but also thwart life threatening diseases. For biggest benefit of exercise, include both aerobic and weight training to strengthen muscles.

The food we eat has a direct bearing on one’s weight and overall health. The amount, timing and composition of the meal will also affect exercise performance and recovery. An active individual also requires energy to fuel exercise and repair muscles. However excess or inadequate energy intake, will debilitate fat percentage or muscle mass and adversely affect performance.

The food (protein, fat, carbohydrate) burned during exercise depends on the intensity and duration of the exercise, fitness level, and nutritional status. As duration of exercise increases (Beyond 60 min), muscle glycogen becomes depleted, constant circulating blood glucose is needed. If blood glucose cannot be maintained during exercise, the ability to perform intense exercise will decrease. Fat cannot be used as a source of energy in high intensity exercises, for which carbohydrate is the dominant fuel. Fat fuels low to moderate intensity exercises. Protein seldom provides energy during exercise, but is crucial in boosting muscle mass and repair of exercise-induced damage to muscles.  

Timing of meal:  
·        Pre – work out: Eating sensibly before exercise assures that there is enough energy to fuel the exercise. Eat a small snack of either whole fruit or whole cereal, before one hour of your workout to ensure your body has the fuel for stamina, endurance and performance.
·        Post – work out: Eating immediately after exercise will help replace muscle glycogen and repair muscle tissue damage and refuel the body for optimal recovery. Eat a meal high in protein and carbohydrates.
·        Hydration - Maintaining water and electrolyte balance is the crux of exercise. Drink water before, during and after workouts. Water should be your first choice for fluid replacement unless you're working out for longer than an hour, at which point you can switch to a sports drink.

Plan to eat right:

·        Choose nutrition encompassing complex carbohydrates, first class proteins and adequate amounts of essential fatty acids {linoleic - sunflower, safflower, corn, soy, peanut oil and a-linolenic acids (ALA) - leafy green vegetables, walnuts, soy oil, canola oil, and fatty fish} to optimize health and exercise performance. Indulge generously in deep and dark colored fruits and veggies which armour you with vitamin, mineral and antioxidants.
·        Iron is the part of red blood cells that carries oxygen to all parts of the body, including muscles. If you have low iron levels in your blood, you may tire quickly. Symptoms of iron deficiency include fatigue, irritability, dizziness, headaches and lack of appetite.
·        Calcium is needed for- strong bones and proper muscle function. Low fat Dairy foods are the best source of calcium.
·        Get a good night’s rest and give yourself a recovery day to rejuvenate. Working out too much can cause fatigue and overtraining symptoms.
·        It is superfluous to indulge in saturated and trans fats, excess sodium and sugar.

     For the best results augment exercise with right eating !  


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