Most of us underestimate how many calories a day we actually consume. We don't all have time to measure accurately with spoons, jugs, bowls etc. We often skip breakfast and then possibly eat two or three meals too close together to up our sugar intake. Without glucose, we do not have sufficient energy and our metabolism slows down making us lethargic and sleepy. Then another chocolate bar may be consumed for a sugar rush!
Talking of sleep, without enough of it, we become stressed and if we lie awake, we are inevitably hungry and tend to get up and eat a high calorie snack.
Lastly, the amount of exercise we take on a daily basis is staggeringly low. We should all be taking part in at least thirty minutes of vigorous exercise each and every day. A recent report suggests that 71% of women and 73% of men do less than 150 minutes per week. These goals can be unmanageable for many of us.
We may be housebound or chronically sick and unable to move around easily.
Do we ever actually enjoy exercising? I've asked around and the overwhelming answer is YES! You see exercising doesn't have to involve sweaty gyms or mouldy changing rooms at some swimming baths. These days there are DVD's, You Tube videos,TV programmes,all telling us ways to "get fit". Numerous halls have men and women taking various classes from aerobics to the latest craze Zumba.
An exercise for less able bodied people is armchair yoga
If needs be, you can see your GP and he or she can prescribe an Exercise on Referral programme. This is available for over 55s and consists of a 24 week programme of exercise, suited to your mobility and needs. There is the one exercise that is FREE and my favourite-walking. I do try to walk for thirty to forty minutes per day and that is because I ENJOY it. Exercise simply will not work if it isn't enjoyed. Another good device to buy is a pedometer. A tiny device strapped to your waist will measure the amount of steps taken daily. We mostly average 5000, it should be more like 10,000.
With obesity and diabetes increasing at such an alarming rate worldwide, perhaps some of us need to take stock. There are 347,000,000 diabetes sufferers worldwide, 2.5 million in the UK alone. Diabetes cases are often, but not always, triggered by obesity and lack of exercise. The cases have doubled since the nineties. Around 70% of diabetics go on to develop Alzheimers. A commonly prescribed diabetes drug could reverse the later stages of Alzheimers
Around 800,000 people in the UK suffer with dementia. Latest figures are even more alarming.
Food Manufacturers bombard us with high calorie foods that are full of sugar, fat and salt. Ready meals are seen as a quick and convenient alternative. Adverts tell us that smoothies and many juice drinks are healthy, but beware the sugar content! I've found that Graze are an excellent company that will deliver to your door, a whole range of snack foods conveniently packaged individually. Reasonably priced and high in vitamins and energy, they are a great way to sustain hunger without added sugar!