3) Eat healthy and lose a few kilos!
Food: Good, bad, and ugly!
Foods that are high in sugar, trans fat, and saturated fat usually give you an immediate boost of energy and happy mood. These foods are like sweets, ice cream, coke, and fast foods. However, in long run, they often cause weight gain, depressed mood, and anxiety. So, it'd be a good idea to limit them in your diet. Learn more about healthy nutrition at Heart Foundation.
I also recommend limiting food and beverages that are high in caffeine. This includes coke, energy drinks, coffee, and black tea. You tend to show anxiety, nervousness, and insomnia if you have too much caffeine a day. For the average adult, the recommended caffeine intake is up to 400 mg a day. It's roughly equal to 2-3 cups of Coffee Latte or 5 cans of Red Bull. Please visit Caffeine Informer for further information.
Obesity & Depression:
Obesity is so common in Australia. Obesity is measured using the Body Mass Index (BMI) which is basically your weight per height. A BMI of 30 or above is considered as obese. You can calculate you BMI Here. Obesity is linked to physical problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, fatty liver, cancer, and heart problems.
Obesity is also associated with mental illnesses such as depression. There are several reasons for this link between obesity and depression. Depressed people tend to be inactive due to a lack of energy and motivation. Obesity makes some people low in self-esteem. Fast foods are cheaper and easier to have compared to home-made meals. Therefore, people who are depressed, unmotivated, or struggling financially tend to use these budget take-aways. Finally, some medications for physical or mental illnesses can cause weight gain. So don't forget to check this with your doctor.
Benefits of losing weight:
There is evidence that losing weight even by a few kilos can make you happier and healthier . But losing weight and maintaining it are sometimes much harder than they seem at first. The general idea is to limit the foods that have high calories. It's usually better to stick to three meals a day and avoid snacks in between. Drinking one glass of water with your meals can fill you up quickly and can help in losing weight. Feeling a tiny bit hungry throughout the day is a good indicator that you are losing weight. So, see it as a positive sign. You may choose one of the online weight loss programs like that of Dr Oz. Or you can join WeightWatchers. I recommend talking with your local doctor or a dietician before dieting if you have health issues or need special assistance.
A few research studies have shown that a Mediterranean-style diet can improve mental health and reduce depressive symptoms . Please click here to read a clinical trial that was conducted in Melbourne. You can find a list of foods to eat and to avoid in this article. Please also visit the Mood & Food Centre for more information.
Tips on healthy diet and weight loss:
Limit foods that have high sugar, salt, or saturated fat such as sweets, soft drinks, ice cream, chips, and butter.
Don't indulge in caffeine. Avoid coke and energy drinks, and limit coffee and black tea. Consider green tea instead.
Limit sausages and burgers; instead have fish, lean meat, and skinned chicken.
Eat wholegrain bread, cracked wheat, brown rice, nuts, fruits, and vegetables.
Limit your eating to three meals a day. See mild hunger in between as a positive sign of losing weight.
Have one glass of water with your meals.
These tips may not be suitable if you have certain medical problems. So please talk with your local doctor for advice if you are suffering from illnesses such as diabetes and digestive problems.