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Summer Food and Fitness Essentials

 

 

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Tianjin Plus asks two experts in nutrition and fitness to give suggestions and important considerations for the hot season, including a note on the H7N9 virus.

 

Nutrition

“No matter what the weather, it is best to stick to a healthy diet”

 

Sunny and longer days may mean more time outdoors with friends indulging in foods that might not be healthy for you. Summer may also mean crash dieting to appear slim and fabulous in summer outfits. No matter what season, Dr. Xavier Rault, Senior Medical Officer, International SOS, states that it is important to be mindful of your diet. Here he shares three essential tips:

 

-During summer, you may be tempted to indulge in fatty foods such as hamburgers or hotdogs at the barbecue, or eat more ice cream to cool you down. No matter what the weather, it is best to stick to a healthy diet – limit your intake of sugar and saturated fats.  It is important to keep up your hydration so drink plenty of water.

 

-Fatty food and sugar (fast food and junk food) is becoming a regular part of peoples’ diet in China. This could lead to a sharp rise in the incidence of diabetes in the future. Ensure you eat a balanced diet which includes fresh fruits and vegetables, and be sure to exercise several times a week. This will help you to stay healthy in the future all year round.

 

-I understand that people do not wish to be overweight when they go to the beach, but my advice is to be careful of being overweight throughout the year! It is better to think of eating healthily at all times, rather than crash diet for one month. To do this, always try to limit fatty foods and sugar. Take in a good breakfast, lunch, and a smaller dinner. Avoid alcohol and snacking between meals and don’t forget to have fruit in your diet. Ensure you do plenty of exercises; sport is a good way to stay healthy.”

 

Fitness

“Wellness is a lifestyle”

 

Many people neglect doing exercise during winter and only do it during summer because of favourable weather conditions. Though many studies show that the best exercise to lose weight and feel healthy is by doing it outdoors (or what is smartly coined as “green exercise” – a jog under a row of trees or a hike in the countryside, etc.), a good fitness regimen at the gym also proves effective and useful, especially in Tianjin when summer heat could reach the extreme and the condition of the air isn’t as good. 

 

Powerhouse’s Jethro (Zhao Wen Ming), Master Trainer and Personal Trainers’ Technical Director, shares valuable tips to help you stay in shape, especially during summertime:

 

-People should do exercise whether it is outdoors or at the gym, especially during summer with possible increase of BMR (basal metabolic rate, or the amount of energy expended daily). I suggest cardio exercises like long duration swimming, running, fast walking, hiking, or playing sports like basketball and badminton. Remember to do these exercises in four considerations: do them for a long time (like 30 minutes or longer), do them with your whole body, continuous motion for a prolonged period of time, and lastly, aim for the feeling of an increased heart rate and sweat as a result of doing your exercise.

 

-Foods that are good to eat two hours before exercising are bananas, chocolate, apples and foods with lean protein because these foods can supply energy upon working out. Post workout, make sure you drink water and about half an hour later, you should eat the right amount of food- especially fruits and vegetables.

 

-Running and walking are good exercises. However, if you have a certain fitness goal, then you may choose a different kind of exercise that works best for your goal. For example, some people may opt for functional exercises like Nike Training Club, Cardio, Crossfit and doing two or all of them can obtain maximum result.

 

-Remember that wellness – eating, sleeping, living, and working out – is a lifestyle. So do exercise all year long, no matter what season.

 

A note on H7N9 virus

With reports on the spread of the H7N9 virus, it is important to keep oneself healthy by eating proper kinds of food, exercise, and proper sanitation and hygiene. The H7N9 virus, which was first discovered in China, is a type of bird flu virus that progresses from the first signs of symptoms to a full-blown illness in a matter of one day. Symptoms of H7N9 include fever that is more than 38 degrees Celsius, cough, and shortness of breath that progress to severe pneumonia. 

 

Here are some prudent tips to prevent infection:

 

-Make it a habit to wash your hands with soap and running water before, during, and after you prepare food, before you eat, after you use the toilet, when your hands are dirty, and when providing care when someone is sick. Hand hygiene prevents the transmission of infection from one person to another. An alcohol-based hand cleanser is also helpful when soap and running water are not accessible.

 

-When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with tissue (not your hands), or a sleeve or flexed elbow.  Throw the used tissue into a closed bin immediately and wash your hands after contact with respiratory secretions.

 

-Prepare and cook meat properly. It is safe to eat meat including poultry and game birds provided that they are properly cooked and prepared since influenza viruses are inactivated by normal temperatures used for cooking (food reaches 70°C in all parts, "piping" hot with no “reddish” parts).

 

-When visiting markets, avoid direct contact with live animals or in areas in contact with live animals. 

 

 

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