Tips To Keep Your Mind & Body Fighting Fit

Four renowned doctors share invaluable insights on keeping the mind and body fighting fit.

Start Youg: A Journey Of Development

Dr Jayant Upadhye, MD FIAP; President AOP Nagpur 2012; Chief Organising Secretary PEDICON 2018, Nagpur; National Vice President CIAP 2021; Organising Chairman National NEOCON 2023; Chief Organising Chairman West Zone PEDICON 2021, Alibagh; Co-organising Secretary IPA Congress and PEDICON 2023, Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

With processed and fast foods finding a special spot during the holiday season, the risk of consuming calorie-laden food is high. More countries are experiencing the double burden of malnutrition, where undernutrition co-exists with obesity and other diet-related, non-communicable diseases.

Building bone mass mostly happens during childhood and adolescence. Low calcium intake has been linked to low bone mineral density, which increases the risk of osteoporosis and broken bones in the future. Vitamin D also plays a critical role in regulating the balance between calcium metabolism and bone formation in the human body. The pandemic reminded us, if nothing else, of the power and potential of good childhood nutrition to build human capital potential, improve immunity and prevent infection and illness. A life cycle approach to nutrition needs to be implemented that can play a role in improving nutritional levels in every household – focusing on children.

Making physical activity a part of the daily routine is not only fun but also healthy. It is only when children engage in enough physical activity that they will be able to assimilate essential nutrients that they consume. To help children grow and develop optimally they need adequate nutrition, they need to be healthy, and they must feel safe and secure. Let us all contribute to a child’s healthy growth and to a happy childhood experience that will allow them to develop to their full potential.

Vitality: A Life Journey To Metabolic Health

Dr Rakesh Kumar Sahay, Senior Consultant Endocrinologist; MD; DM; FACE; FICP; FAMS; Professor & Head, Dept of Endocrinology; Osmania Medical College & Hospital; Sahay’s Endocrine & Diabetes Centre, Ameerpet, Hyderabad; President, Research Society for Study of Diabetes in India; Immediate Past President, Endocrine Society of India; President-Elect, South Asian Federation of Endocrine Societies

Are you classified as metabolically healthy? If not, what areas do you need to focus on? Maintaining metabolic health is a crucial aspect of overall well-being that spans across every stage of life. A proper functioning of metabolic health prevents you from health concerns like high blood pressure, obesity, fatty liver, kidney issues, cholesterol etc. Body Mass Index (BMI) used to be one of the key factors in determining metabolic health.

Metabolic disorders can emerge at various stages of life due to a combination of genetic, maternal nutrition, environmental, and lifestyle factors. Childhood obesity, often driven by unhealthy diets, is a prominent cause of metabolic issues. As individuals transition into adulthood, factors like poor lifestyle choices, limited physical activity, and increased stress can contribute to the development of conditions like Type 2 diabetes and obesity. Aging itself can also lead to changes in metabolism, making older adults more susceptible to metabolic disorders.

Metabolic health is a lifelong journey that requires continuous attention. With the increasing prevalence, individuals must take an active role in nurturing their metabolic well-being through healthy nutrition, regular exercise, stress management, and adequate sleep. By doing so, we can fuel vitality and reduce the risk of chronic conditions, ultimately enjoying a healthier, more vibrant life from infancy through the senior years.

Mind Matters: Nurturing Mental Health In Adulthood

Dr Rahul Baviskar, MD (Medicine); DM (Neurology); Neurocare Clinic and CNS Hospital, Nashik.

1 in 5 adults experience at least one mental health condition every year. It influences not only our emotional state but also our physical health, relationships, and productivity. Unaddressed mental health issues can contribute to physical ailments like heart disease, obesity, and a weakened immune system.

The demands of modern life, like work and societal pressure, can take a toll on one’s mental well-being. A lack of good-quality sleep can exacerbate mental health issues and reduce one’s ability to manage stress. Many seniors also suffer from sleep and behavioural disorders, cognitive deterioration or confusion states. Loneliness and social isolation are key risk factors for mental health conditions in later life.

Mental health promotion and prevention strategies for older adults focus on supporting healthy ageing. Meaningful social activities can significantly improve positive mental health, life satisfaction and quality of life; they can also reduce depressive symptoms. For instance,  befriending initiatives, community and support groups, social skills training, creative arts groups, leisure and education services and volunteering programmes.

Mental health is important at every stage of life. Recognising the signs and seeing a healthcare provider are the first steps to getting treatment. Through a balanced diet, regular physical activity, quality sleep, and effective stress management techniques, adults can improve their mental well-being and reduce the risk of mental health issues.

Keeping Your Mind Healthy

Dr Sanjay Kumar Choudhary, Senior Consultant Neurologist, Institute of Brain and Spine, IBS Hospital, New Delhi; Engaged in Neurological Private Practice in Tertiary Care Hospitals for the last 25 years.

An unhealthy lifestyle can be associated with poor mental health. Stress, sleep disturbances, anxiety, mild cognitive impairment, as well as neuropsychiatric disorders all significantly affect the quality of life of an increasing number of people. Diet and nutrition are critical not only for normal body function and preventing or mitigating dysfunction, but also have a significant effect on mood and mental well-being.

An emerging field called nutritional psychiatry emphasises how diet and nutrition affect how people feel. The MIND diet is a dietary recommendation to counteract neurodegenerative brain changes and improve nervous system function. To improve your mood, one of the best things you can do is eat a well-balanced variety of health-promoting nutrients. The supplementation of micronutrients (e.g., vitamins and minerals) and macronutrients (e.g., Omega 3) can provide several benefits for overall mental health, when accompanied by a healthy lifestyle. Supplementing EPA, DHA, magnesium, vitamin E, and folic acid are vital to the preservation of normal brain function. Promotion of healthy, nutritious diets, while decreasing the consumption of highly processed and refined “junk” foods, may provide benefits even beyond the well-known effects on physical health, including improved psychological well-being.

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