There is good news and bad news about healthy living. The bad news is that diet fads are never going away. By our nature, human beings look for easy solutions. When it comes to dieting, there is a growing industry that exploits these tendencies with lose-weight-quick schemes that seldom deliver on their promises. Not only are most of these diets unhealthy, the fact is that they dont work in the long term.
Australian cardiologist Ross Walker has made a career out of warning people of the dangers of fad diets. Walker has underlined the dangers of the so-called “white death” diets that encourage people to eat only white foods such as bread and pasta.
But it is not all doom and gloom for those who want to live a healthier life. In fact, the principles of sensible dieting are easy to understand and dont require an expert to explain them. A diet heavy with whole foods (instead of processed food that contains high levels of sodium and trans fat), plenty of greens and regular exercise are a great start to a healthier lifestyle that will be free of many of the diseases that plague millions around the world.
The American author Michael Pollan summed up this simple approach with three easy reminders: eat food, not too much, mostly plants. Pollan doesnt forbid meat or advocate some unusual diet akin to the “white death” that Walker cited. Instead, he calls for moderation and notes that plants are one of the most important food groups.
Given the high levels of diabetes and other lifestyle diseases in the Arabian Gulf, this simple advice could change the lives of millions of people. But the transition period can be a difficult one because it requires a new approach to life. We are creatures of habit, after all. With the right amount of time, exercise and healthy eating become part of a routine and the allure of fast food loses its appeal. Despite what the latest diet sage might argue, a healthy lifestyle doesnt happen overnight. It is a lifelong journey that can ultimately be one of the most rewarding any of us will ever take.
Be Part of Quality Journalism
Quality journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce and despite all the hardships we still do it. Our reporters and editors are working overtime in Kashmir and beyond to cover what you care about, break big stories, and expose injustices that can change lives. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying while advertising revenues are falling fast.