Did you know the history of tea goes back some 5000 years? As a matter of fact, the earliest variants of tea were very different from how we perceive the beverage today. Back then, tea was drunk as a concoction to keep one warm and fortified with vital nutrients. Somewhere down the line with the introduction of milk and a various other innovative herbs, tea became a beverage for leisure. But, the truth is that tea is indeed replete with many medicinal benefits. Black tea is a type of tea that has a very strong flavour and is one of the most popular teas across the world. It is true that black tea is a variant that is the most oxidised, but if consumed in moderation, black tea's strong antioxidants could help regulate cholesterol levels, improve heart health, boost immunity and energy levels, and also regulate weight loss. Yes, you heard us! Think weight loss and the only tea you would ever associate with it is green tea, which is not wrong. The abundant amount of catechins does help burn belly fat. Similarly, black tea has its own mechanism to steer weight loss.
Here's why you may want to include black tea in your weight diet:
1. The gut connection: According to a study published in the European Journal of Nutrition, black tea, with help of a specific mechanism through the gut microbiome, may also contribute to good health and weight loss in humans. This mechanism is different from the one adopted by green tea particles. However, the scientists said that both the teas were effective in cutting down weight in the mice model.
2. Lowers triglyceride levels: The flavonoids present in your cup full of black tea may prevent inflammation-induced obesity and lower triglyceride levels and visceral fats.
3. Low-calorie beverage: Did you know that the calorie count of your cup of black tea is almost negligible (approximately 2 calories per cup). It also has zero percent saturated fat and cholesterol. The amount of calories in tea is linked to other products added to it such as sugar, honey or milk. It is best to steep your black tea in nothing but water to derive its best weight loss benefits.
Please Note: It needs to be understood that anything in excess is not a sustainable strategy for weight loss. Caffeine content of black tea is significantly higher when compared to green tea. Excess of caffeine can leave you dehydrated. Black tea also contains natural substances called tannins, which gives black tea a characteristic strong flavour. Tannins are present in types of tea, but they are slightly in higher concentration in black tea. In moderate quantities tannins don't harm, but when consumed in excess, tannins upset our stomach or may cause nausea and vomiting.
Therefore, include black tea in your weight loss diet, but make sure you do keep everything sugary or fattening products away from your concoction. Also keep a tab on your tea intake. Make sure you do not overdo it in a bid to lose weight.
There is no denying the fact that night shift workers are fast losing on their health. Long and hectic work schedules lead to irregular appetites, rapid changes in weight and a high risk of gastro-intestinal disorders. If you also happen to come under the same category, then it's time for you to bring some changes in your lifestyle as it may lead to a host of health problems. Night owls usually suffer from weight gain issues; possible reasons for this could be too much caffeine, high-calorie snacks, irregular eating hours and lack of exercise. According to Dr. Shikha Sharma's book, '101 Weight Loss Tips', "Maintaining regular eating habits without skipping meals are very important. An excess of spices can aggravate gastric secretion, leading to hyperacidity. Try and avoid greasy and spicy food at night."
Here are three tips for night owls to lose weight:
1. Too much caffeine intake may lead to irritability, anxiety and blood pressure. Apart from this, it can also hamper the absorption of iron and calcium in the body. One should try and cut down or limit the consumption of greasy foods, sweets, soft drinks and caffeine. Replacing such foods with vegetables and fruits could prove to be beneficial as they are loaded with fibre that will help you lose weight.
2. When it comes to weight gain, stress can turn out to be a major culprit. It is imperative to manage the stress levels in order to steer clear of stress eating, wherein we end up resorting to unhealthy junk foods that are loaded with calories. One should try and incorporate exercise in their lifestyle in order to aid in weight loss. Sleep well and get good rest before you start your work.
3. Night shift workers usually have to face irregular eating patterns. However, one should not skip their meals, especially breakfast as it can disturb the whole body cycle, which further leads to weight gain. Before going to bed in the morning, eat a small regular breakfast, like cereals with milk and fruits to lose weight.
Fast Food, by and large, is detrimental to the health. Multiple studies have shown this in the past decade. It aggravates many diseases and is responsible for medical conditions such as obesity, respiratory problems, cardiovascular diseases and hypertension. Amidst multiple negative qualities, many fast foods are actually not that bad for the body. If taken in right proportions, some of the fast foods mentioned below can be extremely useful for the body.
Popcorn- Apart from being one of the best accompaniments for movies, popcorns greatly helps in curbing hunger. Home-made popcorns have fewer calories and are a very good antioxidant. The good part about popcorn is the fact that it is not heavy as other fast foods and doesn’t make you feel lethargic. However, it should be ensured that more than one bowl of popcorn is not consumed at a time.
Baked snacks- Baked snacks are a much-preferred choice in the snacks category these days. Owing to their low fat and carb content, they not only serve as tasty snacks but are good for the overall health as well. The fact that baked snacks are made up of whole wheat, makes it a more attractive offering. Baked snacks, when prepared with a dash of spice, can be a good alternative to other unhealthy snacks in the market.
Processed Cheese- Processed cheese contains Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). The latter is found to have anti-carcinogenic properties. A recent study showed that the CLA found in processed cheese is much more than other dairy products. Processed cheese is also a good antioxidant. This being said, too much intake of processed cheese can be harmful to the body.
Dark chocolate brownie- If dark chocolate is consumed with whole wheat brownie, it acts as a good ingredient for patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases. When consumed with a few nuts, dark chocolate brownie becomes a power house of fibre. People with a sweet tooth can find this preparation a good alternative for other fast food items such as chocolate, ice cream and pastries.
Chocolate Bars- This is another treat for a person with a sweet tooth. Dark chocolate bars are rich in antioxidants. It brings down blood pressure level and is found to be effective for the heart. This should not be consumed more than 100 grams per day.
Stout Beer- Dry stout beer with its rich creamy content is as good as a dose of aspirin. This form of liquor improves blood circulation level and reduces the risk of cardiac arrests. One pint of this beer every alternate day will serve the purpose of quenching your alcohol thrust while ensuring that no harm is caused to your health.
Rice though used as a staple in many parts of the world, is still one of the most controversial and misunderstood foods. There are a number of myths associated with this food and now’s time to debunk them. But let’s look at a few facts about rice first.
Rice contains high carbohydrate content. A cup of white rice contains 35gms of carbohydrates
A cup of white rice contains 165 calories
A cup of white rice contains 3-4 gms of proteins
Rice, like all other carbohydrates, ultimately gets broken down into glucose inside the GI track. And glucose is the ultimate source of energy for the human body. There are also two different types of rice, white rice and brown rice. The difference between the two, especially for our health, is substantial.
White rice has very little fibre but brown rice has more fibre and also more vitamins and minerals. Whereas, brown rice has substantial amounts of minerals, which are not present in white rice, such as
Brown rice contains 3 gms of fibre while white rice has only 0.6 gm. This is a substantial difference too.
Myth - Rice Contains Gluten: The fact is that rice is gluten-free and it does not cause allergies that are associated with other grains. Gluten high foods are bad for diabetics and those trying to lose weight.
Myth - Rice is fattening: Rice is, in fact, low in fats and is also cholesterol free. Because it contains carbohydrates, rice is a good source of energy.
Myth - Rice has no protein: Protein is the second-most abundant nutrient found in rice. A cup of white rice contains 3-4 gm. of proteins, as a matter of fact. The quality of the rice protein is also very high compared to other grains.
Myth - Rice has high amounts of salt: Rice contains low amounts of sodium.
Myth - Eating rice for dinner makes one fat: High carb foods like rice should be eaten at night as they are metabolised into glucose, our energy stocks. The glucose in the blood is more readily converted into energy at night. Rice and other grains should be avoided during the day as the glucose more readily converts into fat.
Myth - Rice is difficult to digest: Actually, the reverse is true. Enzymes secreted in the human digestive tract are especially good at digesting rice. White rice undergoes a processing system where the germ layers, bran and husk are all stripped off. By doing this, white rice loses much of the nutrition too.
The rice of choice for all of us, therefore, should be brown rice, compared to white rice. This way we shall be getting the carbs for energy and proteins, fibre, vitamins and minerals to stay healthy.
As an old saying goes, all the tasty things are unhealthy, everyone knows that burgers, pizzas, fries, etc are not very healthy for us, still, these are things we treat ourselves to on weekends and holidays. Junk food not only has a high calorific value, it also exposes the body to preservatives, artificial flavors, bad cholesterol and refined carbs. But, do you know that eating smart after binging on junk food can help reduce the harmful effect of these foods. Here are a few tips.
Drink plenty of water: Junk food has high sodium content. This can leave the body feeling dehydrated and create an electrolyte imbalance. As a result, your body retains water and you begin to feel bloated. At this point, water is your best friend. It can help flush toxins from your body and hydrate it. To go one step further, try drinking warm water through the day. If you like, you can also infuse water with slices of freshly cut fruits or herbs.
Make your diet fiber heavy: Junk food is always tempting and the one way to keep yourself from giving in to such temptation is to keep yourself feeling satiated. Increasing the amount of fiber in your diet can keep you satiated for longer and prevent snacking between meals. Fiber also helps improve digestion and helps the body expel junk food faster. To increase the amount of fiber in your food, pile on fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains.
Include lean proteins: Proteins can also help relieve hunger pangs. However, not all forms of protein are good for the body after binging on junk food. Avoid fatty proteins like dairy products made from whole milk and red meat and instead focus on lean proteins like fish and chicken. These proteins are also easily digestible. Fish is also rich in omega 3 fatty acids that help reduce inflammation caused by additives in junk food.
Flavor your food with ginger: Ginger can help reduce inflammation caused by junk food and ease the digestive system. Drinking a cup of ginger tea or grating ginger over a salad or fruits can help lower triglyceride levels and aid in the liver’s recovery. Additionally, ginger is also beneficial in blood pressure regulation and improving cardio vascular health.
Sip some green tea: One of the reasons junk food is said to be bad for you is because of its high-calorie count. This can cause weight gain and undo your efforts to stay fit. Green tea has antioxidant properties that can negate some of the ill effects of junk food. It also helps lower bad cholesterol levels.