Tips to Diabetes Check at Home

Tips to Leverage your Health with Diabetes Check at Home

Leverage your Health being Diabetes Free-

For people who have diabetes (or any other chronic disease), for that matter – benefits of keeping its markers on a healthy number can’t be overstated. You can now get you A1C levels where you like it to be.
The two key factors to keep diabetes health check involves-
1. Blood sugar control
2. Feel free from fear of its complications and risk factors

A condition of pre-diabetes can trick you before the visible symptoms of diabetes appear. The sudden rise and drop in blood sugar levels can trouble you a lot.
With the diagnostic power, you can manage Diabetes- Control diabetes before it controls you.
Good news: Diabetes can be easily diagnosed and managed.
Bad news: Undiagnosed pre-diabetes condition can put you at risk.

You can note the ‘triple P’ symptom of diabetes namely, polydipsia (thirst), polyphagia (hunger) and polyuria (frequent urination) which is more visible in Type 1 and less frequent in type 2 diabetes. Eventually, it may go unnoticed which is potentially harmful. Endocrinologist Dudl say, Diabetes takes seven to ten years to progress and before the sugar is so high one can notice the symptoms such as thirst, frequent urination and hunger or blurred vision.
Now with the power of one drop (blood test), one can easily detect diabetes and avoid its complications.

Diabetes Diagnosis- Past, Present, and Future

Diabetes a complex disease is likely as old as the ancient Romans, Greeks, Arabs and Indians centuries ago. In the Indian literature, diabetes is referred to as ‘Madhumeha’ known as honey urine whereas ‘Siphon’ in Greece is referred to an increase in urination, these symptoms are still in use. Since then diabetes has come a long way.

Today diabetes health check can be done with a blood test. Diabetes is a condition that results from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin, a pancreatic hormone that regulates sugar when we eat food and while it gets used up in various cells, tissues in the body.

Simply put, insulin regulates blood glucose levels in combination with liver, muscles, adipose tissue like a traffic controller that maintains a balance of traffic. Similarly, insulin balance glucose levels for the proper functioning of the body. Because both high and low levels of blood glucose levels are harmful.
High levels of sugar affect different parts of the body such as eyes, heart, and kidney when insulin couldn’t perform its normal function or due to lack of insulin named insulin resistance.

Diabetes is primarily categorized into type 1 and type 2 diabetes that depends on the cause of onset. Firstly, a virus or infection attacks beta cells of the pancreas (site of production storage of insulin hormone) as a result of immune response and insulin production is destroyed in case of type 1 diabetes.

Whereas, in type 2 diabetes diminished the capacity of the pancreas to release insulin which needs medications or insulin.
Type 1 diabetes the original form is known from 100 years back but type 2 diabetes have resulted from lifestyle disorders or genetic predisposition.

Powerful Diagnostic Blood Tests- Diabetes Health Check Tools

1. HbA1c Test- This test measures average blood sugar over the past three months. It requires no fasting. HbA1c values from 5.7-6.4% denote a condition of pre-diabetes. HbA1c value 6.5% or above is the risk factor for diabetes.
2. Fasting Plasma Glucose Test- This test requires one to be empty stomach of about 8 hours without eating or drinking except water. A range of 100 or above depicts pre-diabetes and a value of 126 or above makes one prone to develop diabetes.
3. Oral Glucose Tolerance Test (OGTT) – This test requires you to eat or drink something sweet to test for before you consume and two hours after its consumption. A value of 140 or above indicates a condition of pre-diabetes and a result of 200 or above shows the risk of diabetes.
Good News: You can certainly decrease the risk of onset of diabetes by a simple change in diet, ideal body weight and physical activity.

Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) outlines the following risk factors for diabetes:
1. Pre-diabetes– a condition that may predispose to diabetes
2. Overweight– BMI above 25
3. Age– 45 years and above
4. Genetically inherited– immediate relatives
5. Physically inactive – less than three times/week
6. Gestational diabetes- diabetes during pregnancy
American Diabetes Association recommends a blood sugar test or HbA1c test if above 45 years and every three years if normal.

  • Other factors include:

    1. High blood pressure
    2. High triglyceride levels over 250mg/dl
    3. HDL levels below 35mg/dl

If you have any of the above risk factors then go for a yearly checkup.
A condition of pre-diabetes makes you prone to the risk of stroke despite, a healthy diet menu along with enhanced physical activity. If followed for a period of six months can reverse the onset of diabetes.

Managing blood glucose levels and vitamin D status important goal for everyone. Studies prove a low level of serum vitamin D concentration is associated with high levels of glycosylated HbA1c.

A healthy food choice includes high fiber, anti-oxidants, essential supplements, probiotics etc with an increase in physical activity – such as aerobic and resistance training. If it doesn’t yield result the metformin is the medicine that can prevent the onset of diabetes for the next 10 years.

Research has shown a decrease in HbA1c value by 0.7 percentage point on exercise. Different forms of exercise – aerobic and resistance training are proven to lower insulin resistance in adults with abdominal obesity at risk factor for diabetes.

Exercise tips- Safety first:

How much exercise you should go for? Exercise for some can come as an aid to cut back on high blood pressure or diabetes medications. It also makes you feel happier and healthier.

150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week is recommended (Department Of Health & Human Services). But before you join any form of workout consult your doctor to prevent near future health complications.

1. If on insulin dose do check your blood glucose levels first before exercising. If the level of blood glucose is under 100 mg/dl you can have a piece of fruit or a handful of nuts to avoid hypoglycemia.
2. Monitor glucose level after 30 minutes of exercise to see if the numbers are stable.
3. Some experts suggest avoiding exercise if blood glucose levels are above 250 mg/dl as some forms of exercise can spike blood sugar even higher.
4. To avoid complications associated with diabetes always wear glucose monitor on your wrist that will remind you to take insulin dose.
5. Always carry some candy or glucose pills with you in case of a sudden drop in glucose levels during exercise.
6. Best time to start exercise or brisk walking after one to three hours of having your meal by this time blood sugar levels are high. But, if you feel fatigue or pain avoid exercise.

Keep track of Blood Pressure Numbers

Keep track of Blood Pressure Numbers-Take the Charge for Heart Health

Diabetes and heart disease a risky combination both tend to live in each other’s vicinity as suggested in many research studies.

Adults with diabetes are two to four times are more likely to die from heart disease compared to adults without diabetes. According to American Heart Association diabetes is one of the major risk factors for heart disease that is controllable or modifiable.

About 68% of people with diabetes over 65 years of age die of some form of heart disease and 16% from stroke from the same group.

There are proven ways to protect your heart such as consume a more plant-based diet, manage stress and nurture social contacts. Together, these can result in positive healthy changes in both the brain and the body.

Here, ‘together’ word is a ‘cohesive approach’ – just adding more fibers, guzzle ounces of water or add on more kilometer to your morning walk routine isn’t enough to forestall heart attack risk.

The crux of our cardiovascular health and cardiac rehabilitation program is two keystones for heart health. Blood pressure is the leading risk factor for heart disease; about 1 in 3 people suffer from high blood pressure that is unnoticed.

When its numbers are high it can be disheartening and stressful as it doubles the risk of suffering a stroke.

The reason behind high blood pressure being overlooked or unnoticed is its no warning sign or symptom unless one goes through a heart attack.

Because of this high blood pressure is also referred to as ‘silent killer’ but you can make it ‘sign-lent healer’ with your skill power.

Keep track of high blood pressure numbers:

The best way to know about high blood pressure is to get it checked. At doctor’s clinic if blood pressure numbers are high this could be due to stress, some drink or exercise before that day.

If already diagnosed with high blood pressure then one cannot be sure if the condition is worsening or under control, because you have reached clinic after crossing a heavy traffic have work pressure in your mind.

Firstly, buy a blood pressure machine having a cuff for the upper arm that inflates and gives the reading automatically. American Heart Association recommends not to go for finger or wrist blood pressure monitors as they are not reliable.

Secondly, for a proper blood pressure management suggests getting your blood pressure checked on your own at home. Once at home, begin with a check in the morning before taking blood pressure medications and then another reading in the evening daily for a week as guided. Keep a record of the reading.

Pros: Effective for people with white-collar hypertension and labile hypertension.

A word of advice: High blood pressure is a physical response to stress. Do not over stress when your blood pressure is high initially as blood pressure changes throughout the day.

Thirdly, measure blood pressure in both the arms, as it may reveal a higher risk of heart attack; with a difference of 10 points or more one can be at higher risk of heart attack by 38%. Consult your doctor for reference.

Fourthly, doctors primarily check for top number known as systolic pressure than lower number namely, diastolic pressure. Research suggests focusing on both the numbers although for people with 50 years or above systolic pressure is important to look for.

Reason: Systolic pressure is the pressure by heart on the arteries when blood comes out of the body. Whereas, diastolic pressure is the pressure in your blood vessels when heart at rest.The range for high blood pressure: 130/80 mmHg (AHA).

Manage high blood pressure with mindful eating without medications:

With a healthy diet plan, you can get rid of blood pressure pills. Foods high in calcium, potassium, and magnesium are a boon to heart’s health with an add-on (MUFA- olive oil and fish) it improve heart health. Avoid saturated fats such as butter and red meat.

Foods high in Potassium- Prunes, carrot, passion fruit, plain yogurt (low-fat), tomato, sweet potato, salmon etc.

How to include them – low intake of potassium results from low intake of vegetables, fruits, and dairy. Focus on food choices high in potassium content to add in your meals such as such as salad, soups, and stew. Replace white bread and rice with a bowl of oats, quinoa or brown rice for a healthy breakfast.

Foods high in Magnesium – whole grains, spinach, quinoa, black beans, avocado, almond, peanuts, and dairy products. Magnesium regulates nerve function and maintains a normal heartbeat.

How to include them- can use yogurt in salad dips, sauces or in place of mayonnaise in pasta and macaroni dishes. You can add almond, spinach in a quinoa salad with a squash of olive oil.

Food high in Calcium- Tofu, almond milk, cheese, buttermilk, bok choy, broccoli, calcium-fortified cereals. Calcium regulates normal blood pressure levels in the body and heart muscle function along with the intake of magnesium sources.

How to include them – Low calcium is due to inadequate intake of dairy. You can replace sugar syrup and cow milk with almond milk in desserts.

Related post: The best ranked diets for a healthy heart of 2019- In a nutshell

MUFA (Monounsaturated Fatty Acids)-

Olive oil- drizzles of olive oil over pasta or vegetables in place of butter or as a salad dressing or during sauté.

Fish- buy fresh, frozen, or canned fish high in omega 3 content such as salmon, sardines, herring etc.

A research done by Global Organisation for EPA and DHA (GOED) reported adequate intake of EPA and DHA may decrease cardiovascular health in people with high levels of triglycerides.

There is an association between EPA and DHA intake on heart health.
To optimize cardiovascular health about 1000 mg of through dietary supplements and fortified foods.

250mg of EPA and DHA per day, in general, is recommended. 83 % of GLOBAL POPULATION suffer from omega-3 deficiency in countries where EPA and DHA intake is minimal.



We all know the importance of healthy living, and you are reading this means you must be looking forward to a better life. The very first step is to know how to prepare for the healthy you. Tuck in your belt and go through this article, I’ll provide you with valuable information about the history of yoga and its usefulness.

The reasons to choose yoga health benefits as your motivator over conventional exercises are many; I’ll enlist the major five reasons.

You can motivate yourself and achieve your positive health score. Try to narrow down the types of yoga you want to pursue. Balance it by a realistic self-assessment and top it with a doddle of your motives carefully.

The fear of inexperienced and unknown in professional, as well as personal life creates stress and anxiety. To tide over this anxiety, we have a few tips for you.

Instead of stressing out over various health issues and constantly losing your focus. Yoga comes to your rescue and helps maintain your balance in all walks of life to make the most of your potential.

Yoga as your health motivator over conventional exercise-

In a world where intelligence and conviction appear to be perfectly married with success creates a much stress to reach the goals of an individual. At a smaller, less profound level the same thing may be happening to you. The anxiety that is always omnipresent at the back of your mind needs to be curbing.

Yoga practice, unlike conventional exercises, doesn’t require much time, equipment, proper training. Moreover, one has the chance to get hurt on most of the exercise machines without much proper training.

Keep calm and stay focused and do yoga.

Yoga and its therapeutic approaches-

A randomized trial by John Hopkins Medicine suggests yoga health benefits more effective and safe for people suffering from two forms of arthritis after eight weeks of yoga sessions. 

According to their study yoga improves the overall physical and mental well-being of people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis. 

  1. Yoga and Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA): 

    Rheumatoid Arthritis                                       Photo creditpngtree

    Rheumatoid arthritis is a disabling disease that affects 1 in 5 people under the age group of 65 years. This type of arthritis affects mobility and other daily life activities.

    There is no proper treatment of this disease also it leads to pain and stiffness in joints that makes people less active. Only proper management is the key to lessen the symptoms of arthritis.

    Yoga can ease rheumatoid arthritis pain and impacts about 20% improvement in pain, energy levels, and physical function. To protect vulnerable joints from a damage health professional can modify poses to accommodate individual abilities. 

    Frequent flare-up condition and damaged joints in rheumatoid arthritis patients make it difficult for them to go for regular exercise activity. But to keep moving vinyasa or flow yoga is the best alternative to hiccups in the exercise routine.

  2. Yoga and osteoporosis:Few exercise activities may put pressure on the spine. But, some yoga practices can cut down the risk of fracture and strengthen your bones. Expert suggests Yoga a safe option for people with osteoarthritis that improves ease in walking and flexibility.

  3. Yoga and stress:

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    According to an article published in JAMA about 60-80% of doctor visits are stress-related conditions. Chronic stress is one of the major reasons for increased biological aging and chronic inflammation. Both these conditions can trigger metabolic diseases from diabetes to heart disease.

    A study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience reported positive impact of yoga and meditation. Its impact on physiological and immunological markers of stress and inflammation and improves overall well-being.

    Yoga is more effective than Chi meditation that alleviates stress. Practicing yoga in a long-term induces goal-oriented behavior using improved cognitive abilities. Whereas it mitigates army’s long-term goal that is impact of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

     Yoga, meditation and Tai chi is a novel approach to mind-body interventions. It can now reverse the stress inducing DNA reactions at molecular level that affects our health.

  4. Yoga and chronic back pain:Back Pain

                                Vectors graphics designed by  freepik

    A research study suggests yoga more effective over conventional exercise in case of back pain.

    As the patients assigned in the yoga group were better in performing daily activities with less pain than those in the exercise group.  Although exercise is recommended in patients with chronic back pain along with painkillers (NSAIDs) but its impact is not significant. On the other hand, yoga practice is a more effective and gentle program for people with this condition as reported by the experts.

  5. Yoga and Heart:  heart health

    Yoga may help you improve your cardiovascular health by improving its risk factors. Such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, weight gain, and stress. A study in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology reported that yoga lowers risk of heart disease similar to any conventional exercises. According to Dr. Yeh, yoga is less strenuous and easy to practice over many types of exercise. Moreover, an add-on to a cardiac rehabilitation program to recover from a heart attack or heart surgery.

    According to a report published in Harvard Heart Letter, participants of all age group saw improvement in lowering high blood pressure. By five points and cholesterol by 12 points and lost about five pounds as well. The ability of yoga to unwind both physical and mental problems by letting go stress. With the practice you can soothe body and reset the mind to create positive feedback loop. It involves applying techniques of mindfulness, gratitude and self-compassion. 

    Share your views on yoga health benefits.

Best Ranked Diets for Healthy Heart of 2019

Best Ranked Diets for a Healthy Heart of 2019- In a Nutshell

DASH diet? Mediterranean diet? Here’s which is the most likely to keep your heart on track as ranked by the US and World News Report.

Your heart is one of the most working organs as the heart beats about 2.5 million times over the average lifespan.

Moreover, transporting gallons of blood throughout the every body part of the body that are the host of oxygen, hormones and other essential cells.

It also wipes out metabolic wastes and helps in maintaining the homeostasis inside the body.

If the heart fails to perform its task the normal functioning of the body may come to a halt. Consequently, will raise several complications. Performing this non-stop workload, for so long and for so many people your heart deserves a special bonus.

A healthy routine to keep it working without any hiccups. This can be brought down by an unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, smoking and genetic factors (unlucky genes) and more.

Stand up for your Heart:

Structured cardio workout is essential for optimal heart function. But you should also try structured healthy diets too. As most of the medical experts would recommend a wide range of heart-healthy diets.

But, which is the best ranked diets that suits your heart with hindsight in managing certain biomarkers of heart disease.

Like high cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, and high blood pressure levels can keep your heart on a healthy track.

Before having a glimpse of the best ranked diets for a healthy heart, let us first look at the reasons of heart disease that tolls one’s health which is at the alarming stage.

According to one of the reports of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention around 610,000 people die due to heart disease in the United States every year.

In addition, making heart disease a number one killing disease that accounts for 1 in every 4 men and women in the United States today.

Heart disease and other lifestyle diseases like diabetes fall under metabolic syndrome or syndrome X. Metabolic syndrome is a combination of symptoms like central obesity, high blood pressure, high insulin level high triglyceride levels and low serum HDL (high-density lipoprotein) levels. Moreover, a risk factor that leads to cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes (1).

A study published in the Journal of Circulation in 2016 reports that over 45% of heart attacks are ‘silent’ that is, symptoms were so abstruse, and the person doesn’t know it occurred.

It makes difficult to go for right treatment on right time than people who have symptoms as said by Dr. Evelina Grayver, director of the coronary unit, North Shore University.

Risk factor:

 National Heart Lung and Blood Institute outlined the following conditions that are responsible for developing atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). It includes: Sedentary lifestyle, overweight, smoking, unhealthy diet.

US news reporters along with nationally recognized experts in the field of nutrition, diet, obesity, food psychology, diabetes, and heart disease. Described a diet profile after carefully reviewing a number of government reports and medical resources.

In which expert scoring was noted down to rankings from 5 (highest that is extremely effective) to 1(lowest, ineffective). However, excluding the cost of plan and exercise making diet the prime focus.

US News Report ranked the diets in seven categories that include: easy to follow a diet, short-term weight loss, long-term weight loss, nutritional adequacy. In addition, has potential to manage and prevent diabetes and heart disease and safety.

To sum up, in this article we will discuss primarily about the best ranked diets for a healthy heart.

Related Post: Keep track of blood pressure numbers-Take the charge for heart health 

Following are the top 3 best ranked diets based on averaged heart-healthy ratings:

# 1. DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet-

Akansha DASH diet chart

Photo edit credit- Ojasvi Jain

DASH diet fights off high blood pressure because high blood pressure is referred to as silent killer. Because it is without visible symptoms or warning signal until a heart attack occurs.

More to it, millions of people have high blood pressure levels without knowing about it and about 1 in every 3 American adults suffer from it. Fortunately, high blood pressure can be detected easily and prevented with proper diet in proven ways.

Dash Diet is the acronym for ‘Dietary approaches to stop hypertension’ to stop hypertension or high blood pressure as described by NHLBI.

It focuses on foods such as whole grains, lean protein, low-fat dairy, vegetables, and fruits.

To sum up, these food groups are loaded with nutrients like potassium, calcium, protein, and fiber that stabilizes high blood pressure to normal levels.

U.S News findings suggest that DASH diet is balanced that falls in the bracket of 2,300 milligrams to 1,500 milligrams and can be followed long-term.

As a result, ranked the best overall diet that ties with the Mediterranean Diet by U.S News.

Dash Diet restricts high saturated fat (fatty meats), full-fat dairy foods and sugar-sweetened beverages.

Simple Swaps to employ the Dash diet at work:

  1. Switch white flour for whole wheat flour.
  2. Substitute salt for herbs and spices.
  3. Swap chips for almond, pistachios or walnuts.
  4. Swap fatty meat for lean meat.
  5. Switch sweetened beverages for sparkling water.
  6. Swap sugar dipped dessert for vegetable or fruit to every meal.

Lastly, 10-15 minute brisk walk after lunch and dinner is a must. Starting Dash diet is not a magic wand that will put you at absolute change avatar overnight in terms of health.

Instead, small changes can lead to a healthy eating habit that will benefit you in the long run. Surprisingly, you are likely to shed off those extra kilos, if you follow the rules of Dash Diet with a proper diet plan and structured exercise regime.

Switching to the Dash Diet Programme:

The Dash Diet plan is based on 2000 calories a day. But, it may vary according to individuals daily calorie needs to be included from following food groups.

Dash diet- An easy to follow diet:

Whole grains and products: 7-8 serving daily

Research suggests that whole grains keeps your heart healthy and maintains healthy body weight, so choose nutrient-dense food.

Such as, whole wheat, barley, brown rice, oats, finger millet (Ragi) and shove aside highly processed foods such as white bread, white rice, and noodles.

Vegetables and fruits: 4-5 servings a day

Eat water-rich fruits and vegetables that are full of carbohydrates but low in calories cutting back on fatty foods.

Low fat/ fat-free Milk: 2-3 servings a day

To get the daily requirement of calcium have milk, cheese, and yogurt. On the other hand, for lactose intolerance, a common digestive problem increase consumption of calcium-fortified foods.

Nuts and seeds: 4-5 servings per week

Healthy fats are good for the heart and promote weight loss. Such as monosaturated fats found in olive oil and polyunsaturated fats found in fish, walnuts, canola oil and others.

# 2. Mediterranean Diet


The Mediterranean diet is not just a diet plan but a dietary pattern for a healthy lifestyle that includes traditional food and drinks.

Unlike other dietary pyramids, the Mediterranean diet pyramid focus on the frequency of some foods eaten and portion size. It primarily emphasizes olive oil, whole grains, fruits, nuts, vegetables, and fish.

To harness heart-healthy benefits of healthy eating adopt proven strategies that studied the eating habits of Mediterranean people for more than 60 years.

Father of Mediterranean diet, Ancel Keys in 1940 discovered people eating a Mediterranean diet in Northern Europe has a low rate of heart disease and lives longer.

Several studies show that a Mediterranean diet not only has positive benefits on cardiovascular disease.

But, results in a low rate of diabetes, certain cancers, obesity, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

The Research supporting Mediterranean diet in heart health and weight loss

A PREDIMED-Plus study in 2018 analyzed data for one year including 626 patients with Type 2 diabetes, different cardiovascular risk factors and other factors.

Such as, fat accumulation and changes in body weight. Patients who were assigned the Mediterranean diet low in calories resulted in 5% weight loss in about 33.7% of those participants.

An improvement was also observed in inflammatory biomarkers and parameters of glucose metabolism (2).

A 2018 study published in the Frontiers in Nutrition Journal, researchers assigned non-human primates with either Mediterranean diet group or Western diet group.

After a period of 30 months found that Mediterranean diet mainly a plant-based resulted in 7% of good bacteria in the gut.

Whereas meat-centric diet has only 0.5% of good bacteria, in spite calories in both the diet groups were same. A healthy microbiome is responsible for a healthy heart (3).

Another study, published in American Heart Association’s Journal Circulation in 2018, assigned 107 healthy but overweight participants between 18-75 years of age with one of the two type of diets randomly: hypo calorie vegetarian diet (eggs and dairy) and hypo calorie Mediterranean diet (poultry, fish, whole grain, fruit, vegetable, beans)

After 3 months, participants switched the diets. Although weight loss didn’t differ greatly between vegetarian and Mediterranean diet groups but found one significant change.

The vegetarian diet was more effective in LDL (‘bad’) cholesterol reduction. Mediterranean diet decreases triglyceride levels, a key factor for increased heart attack and stroke (4).

# 3. Ornish Diet-

ornish diet

The Ornish Diet comprises diet low in fat, animal protein and refined carbohydrate. A diet formulated by Dr. Dean Ornish, a clinical professor of medicine at University of California, San Francisco, founder (PMRI).

Ornish diet focuses on exercise from aerobic activities to resistance training, relationships and stress management.

From breathing exercises to yoga and in terms of nutrition categorize food from most helpful (group 1) to least (group 2) healthful.

On selecting the type regimen from above-mentioned combinations is to practice them in accordance with your timing. Most importantly, each day acts as a catalyst to maintain your optimal health in the long-term.

Ornish diet is a scientifically proven program on the basis of controlled randomized trials to lower high blood pressure.

Similarly, maintain healthy glucose levels, weight reduction, and prevention of cancer and heart disease without any drugs or surgery.

The Ornish Diet Program: This type of diet can be effectively followed in the following way:

Incorporate whole grains, legumes and fruit and vegetables. Limit animal foods, processed foods, and alcohol. There is no off-limit dietary restriction on any foods. But, one should follow the-spectrum-reversing-heart-disease program.

Have a look at the research studies supporting the beneficial effects of following the Ornish diet:
  1. In a 2007 study, effects of changes in health behaviors (unsaturated dietary fat intake, physical activity and stress management) to the coronary and psychosocial risk factors were analyzed in 869 non-smoking CHD patients. After 3 months of study, a significant reduction in risk factors of coronary disease was noticed (5).
  2. In a 2007 study published in European Journal of Heart Failure, after 3 months due to intensive lifestyle changes. A significant improvement observed in lifestyle behavior, blood pressure, resting heart rate, exercise capability, total and LDL cholesterol in LVEF (<=40%) patients that can be maintained for 12 months (6).
  3. A study published Journal of the American Dietetic Association in 2009, assigned participants with three types of diets. Namely, Atkin diet, Ornish diet, and South beach diet. They conducted a randomized and crossover study with 4-week isocaloric phase followed by 4-week washout phase. A significant reduction in LDL cholesterol was observed when followed the Ornish diet (7).

7 Powerful Behavioral Hacks for Healthy Weight Loss-

Unsure of how to lose weight in a healthy way? Have diets you tried in the past did not deliver as proclaimed?

We indulge in one of a type of diet, as advertised to lose weight instantly, kicked off well, and then suddenly lose interest. Maybe due to meal restrictions, boredom, or could not match up to the diet plan and quit.

What’s next? We should try some other popular diet available or just let go of the desire of losing weight or pop weight loss pills that have flourished in the market?

Globally, obesity is a widespread metabolic problem and its frequency has tripled over the last four decades as reported by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Obesity, the word in itself is enough to give chills to the spine of an obese person. In today’s fast pace world, weight loss and weight management seem invincible leading to a lot of stress.

The article explores weight management and eating behavior in context to self-regulation and motivation to long-term weight control.
The good news is that with an adept management technique you can reduce excess weight.

Right Approach- The very first response that triggers one’s mind is to abstain from food that leads to crash diet ultimately double weight gain. In contrary to it, behavior modification will serve as a motivating fuel to achieve weight goals.

How can you differentiate between obesity and overweight?

The definition for obesity and overweight is based on BMI or Body Mass Index. BMI or Body Mass Index is a parameter of weight-for-height to categorize adults into overweight or obesity.

BMI is measured as weight in kilograms divided by square of height in meters that is, (kg/m2) for adults.

  • Obesity: BMI >=30 kg/m2
  • Overweight: BMI>=25 kg/m2

Why these factors matter?

Experts have proven that factors like overweight, obesity and related factors such as over-eating, environmental factors are risk factors for heart disease, diabetes, cancer and so on.

In addition, eating practices play a greater role in the development of effective interventions for healthy weight loss program.

Weight loss is challenging, the option is plenty but an effective solution to healthy weight loss rely on our behavior and how we modify them.

Recent researches have advocated skill power over will power to lose weight and keep it off.

In this article, I’ll discuss ‘Skill Power’ techniques that comprise powerful behavioral hacks or habits that can be tailored according to your requirements.

Firstly, track the type of hunger and before you eat anything you need to learn how to differentiate different types of hunger which are as follows:

  • Nutritional hunger- The trigger: starvation of nutrients

          Your action: Eat the right amount of nutrient and at the right time

  • Thirst hunger- The trigger: growling and empty stomach feeling, lack of water intake

         Your action: stay hydrated

  • Low blood sugar hungerThe trigger: hypoglycemia, dizziness, weakness

         Your action: Check your blood sugar levels, don’t skip dinner

  • Variety hungerThe trigger: A craving for something sweet, salty or creamy

          Your action: opt for low-calorie foods and go for portion control

  • Emotional hungerThe trigger: stress, anxiety or fear

         Your action: Seek ways to satisfy emotional voids

Harness Health benefits of Seasonal Foods

Get access to seasonal whole foods such as fruits and vegetables from your local farm or markets. These produce are usually fresher, palatable, healthy and cheaper when it is in season.

Seasonal produce also adds more color and variety in your diet; experts recommend about five servings of fruits and vegetables in one’s meal.

Read on: 10 Superfoods to Add to your Diet this Winter

Escape the Sugar Trap

According to experts, sugar acts as an addictive agent as it brings the neurobiological changes similar to those in drug addiction.

Now international dietary guidelines encourage minimizing sugar consumption mainly monosaccharide and disaccharide added to foods, fruit juices or drinks has been linked to atopic asthma.

Do Not Skip Breakfast

 A good and healthy breakfast fuels your body and makes you ready for the day- it is one of the healthy behavioral hacks.

Include high fiber food in your breakfast such as oats, whole grains and products, nuts, fruits and vegetables.

Those who skip breakfast lead an unhealthy lifestyle in terms of poor dietary intake, frequent smoking and alcohol consumption, hormonal imbalances and altered biological clock.

Food addiction model suggests excessive consumption of sugar leads to binging behavior.

Eating a healthy breakfast maintains a healthier weight, cardiac and gut health. It has been proven in research that skipping breakfast has a strong correlation to the risk of developing atherosclerosis that involves hardening of arteries.

Portion Control

Familiarize yourself with standard serving sizes. Did you know that one serving of pasta is only 1/2 cup or about the front of the clenched fist? Or the recommended serving size of meat is only 3 ounce about the size of your palm?

Stay Focused for Positive Change

If you are struggling to adapt to certain behavior change such as taking up a particular diet, learn meditation or practice any physical activity. For instance, to shed those extra kilos or maintain optimal health-need not worry at all.

Research suggests it takes probably three months to change behaviors and if this change is for a healthier version of you the just stay motivated, focused and keep a check on your progress.

Related Post: 6 Health Behavioral Modifications to go for Healthy Food

Set Small and Realistic Goals-

A healthy approach involves taking small and realistic steps today to impact your health tomorrow. Do not indulge in any short-term or long-term methods rather give attention to whatever you do daily.

Bring a shift in your behavior gradually to incorporate healthy choices into your weight loss plan.

Focus to improve diet rather adapt to a certain diet. Do not set any goal solely to lose weight rather focus on overall health.

Quit Sugar and Salt with Health Behavioral Modification

Before investing investing in for a certain for a product to attain your health goals understand its repercussions.
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 Quit Sugar- An approach to change your Diet Plan

‘One cannot fit a square peg in a round hole’. This analogy fits with the diets that work for everybody but didn’t pay off you in the long-term.

Because some diet or foods are not right for you, for your metabolism or your condition.

Here, come in play your genes and environment that influence on what and how much you eat .There is no term for bad food, only food products are used wrongly.

For instance, when one tries to forcibly fit a particular food to fulfill a need that is not intended for, it is likely to fail.

To map it to your health goal, and preferences to get the best out of it.

A health behavioral modification is all about a modified eating habit and exercise that we hear so many times? Maybe not, because a macro-shift in choices you make each day is enough.

Such as experimentation with the low-fat diet or Mediterranean diet. Spend time in grocery shopping rather than watching T.V. This could be achieved when you set small and accurate goals. Also, put off the ‘doer’ that arouses temptation of over-eating.

 The Credibility of a Food Product

When your efforts are for long-term health goals like getting rid of those extra kilos or pain-free mornings.

It is inertia that keeps you from investing in choices that are designed healthy for an overall well-being. For this, one must go for a healthier version of the food.

A better option would be to understand the risks associated with the products available. Then select those that are best suited to your needs.

The Underlying Risk in Fixed Returns 

Processed foods, excess salt, sugar, and its products are easily available. It may be suitable when needed to eat something in an instant, while in a meeting or college fest, but it will harm you in return. 

So go for nutrients and not calories when you are hungry.

When Market dictates Food Preferences 

If you are inclined to invest in products depending upon how markets are expecting you to choose from. It is likely that your food choices are not aligned with health goals.

There is a need for skill, informed choices and time to make alterations based on expected market movement. Become your own choice architect to your health and well-being.

Identify foods that are structured to meet your needs. Make a habit to see to the pros and cons of each food product you buy and evaluate its consequences.

Sugar Withdrawal: An innocuous source of energy or not?

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What happens when you Quit Sugar? Sugar or dietary sugar falls under the carbohydrate category of food groups. Sugar forms a major portion of nutritive calorie in the human population.

Recent studies suggest that our body’s own detoxification system can overcome the deleterious effect of high blood sugar. Body’s own fat metabolism is the in-built detoxification system. 

A chemical reaction that involves a type of metabolite, ketone acetoacetate a by-product from fat metabolism quenches the reactive by-product of sugar metabolism that is, methylglyoxal which is toxic to the cells.

A 2018 report published in the Psychopharmacology Journal stated psychological factors to be the leading cause of anxiety, and mood disorders under hypoglycemic condition.

Scientists observed a bad eating behavior to be at fault. It is associated with sluggish nature and stress resulting from high levels of corticosteroid.

The drop in activity levels enhanced when given antidepressants rather glucose. Hence, identify your stressors whether it is nutritional hunger or emotional hunger and employ healthy eating habits into a possible remedy.

Halt the salt in your kitchen: Best Health Tip 

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Although salt is essential for the normal functioning of the body but the sodium in salt with potassium maintains fluid levels in the body.  Thereby, sodium facilitates the transmission of nerve impulses and the contraction of muscle fibers.

But all this process requires less than one-tenth of a teaspoon per day. Choose fresh herbs and spices as an alternative to salt to flavor your dishes. It helps to minimize the risk of high blood pressure.

Related: Simple Swaps to employ Dash Diet

The bottom line:

When you find yourself either cutting back on your health goals like restoring to sugary products. Despite, having invested in a healthier version of food as you assume. It indicates that the money and time may be in the wrong food product.

A good diet should offer a plenty of choices, relatively few restrictions. With no expensive special foods on your grocery list. It should be something you can sustain for years.

It should be as good for your brain, heart, gut, bones as it is for your waistline.

This type of diet won’t give you a quick-fix but arsenal with a better nudge towards long-term healthy choices.

This will benefit not just a few people but a whole of you.


Thank you for reading!