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Dr Zinobia “With scientific attitude, dedication and care, we at ClinOma Healthcare are confident in making a difference to many more human lives and to the world of lifestyle management and healthcare,” says Dr Zinobia

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1) How much water should you drink each day?

Water is essential to good health, yet needs vary by individual. Studies have produced varying recommendations over the years, but in truth, your water needs depend on many factors, including your health, how active you are and where you live. Although no single formula fits everyone, knowing more about your body’s need for fluids will help you estimate how much water to drink each day.



Every day you lose water through your breath, perspiration, urine and bowel movements. For your body to function properly, you must replenish its water supply by consuming beverages and foods that contain water.

A general recommendation is 8- 9 cups. The average urine output for adults is about 1.5 liters (6.3 cups) a day. You lose close to an additional liter (about 4 cups) of water a day through breathing, sweating and bowel movements. Food usually accounts for 20 percent of your total fluid intake, so if you consume 2 liters of water or other beverages a day (a little more than 8 cups) along with your normal diet, you will typically replace your lost fluids.

2) How will you tame your salt habit now for reducing sodium intake in foods ?

You’ve been trying to eat less sodium — just a pinch of table salt on your baked potato and a dash on your scrambled eggs. But a pinch here and a dash there can quickly add up to unhealthy levels of sodium. Consider that just one teaspoon of table salt has 2,325 milligrams (mg) of sodium. And it’s not just table salt you have to worry about. Many processed and prepared foods already contain lots of sodium.



Your kidneys naturally balance the amount of sodium stored in your body for optimal health. When your sodium levels are low, your kidneys essentially hold on to the sodium. When sodium levels are high, your kidneys excrete the excess in urine.

But if for some reason your kidneys can’t eliminate enough sodium, the sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, which increases pressure in your arteries. Such diseases as congestive heart failure, cirrhosis and chronic kidney disease can make it hard for your kidneys to keep sodium levels balanced.

Some people’s bodies are more sensitive to the effects of sodium than are others. If you’re sodium sensitive, you retain sodium more easily, leading to fluid retention and increased blood pressure. The extra sodium can even lead to high blood pressure, which can lead to heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and congestive heart failure.

Don’t exceed 2,300 mg of sodium a day if you’re a healthy adult.
Don’t exceed 1,500 mg of sodium a day if you have high blood pressure, kidney disease or diabetes; you are black; or you’re middle-aged or older.

Keep in mind that these are upper limits, and less is usually best, especially if you’re sensitive to the effects of sodium. If you aren’t sure how much sodium your diet should include, talk to your doctor.

The main dietary sources of sodium are :

Processed and prepared foods. These foods are typically high in salt, which is a combination of sodium and chloride, and in additives that contain sodium.
Natural sources. Some foods naturally contain sodium. These include celery and other vegetables, and dairy products such as milk, meat and shellfish. While they don’t have an abundance of sodium, eating these foods does add to your overall sodium intake. For example, 1 cup (237 milliliters) of low-fat milk has about 107 mg of sodium.
In the kitchen and at the table. Many recipes call for salt, and many people also salt their food at the table. And many other condiments also contain sodium. One tablespoon (15 milliliters) of soy sauce, for example, has about 1,000 mg of sodium.

Tips to reduce sodium intake :

Eat more fresh foods and fewer processed foods. Most fresh fruits and vegetables are naturally low in sodium. Also, fresh meat is lower in sodium than are luncheon meat, bacon, hot dogs, sausage and ham. Buy fresh and frozen poultry or meat that hasn’t been injected with a sodium-containing solution.

Opt for low-sodium products. If you do buy processed foods, choose those that are labeled “low sodium.”
Remove salt from recipes whenever possible. You can leave out the salt in many recipes, including casseroles, stews and other main dishes that you cook. Baked goods are generally an exception since leaving out the salt could affect the quality and taste. Use cookbooks that focus on lowering risks of high blood pressure and heart disease to help guide you to sparing the salt without spoiling taste or quality.

Limit use of sodium-laden condiments. Soy sauce, salad dressings, sauces, dips, ketchup,and mustard all contain sodium.
Use herbs, spices and other flavorings to enhance foods. Use fresh or dried herbs, spices,  and fruit juices to jazz up your meals.
Use salt substitutes wisely. Some salt substitutes or light salts contain a mixture of table salt and other compounds. To achieve that familiar salty taste, you may use too much of the substitute — and get too much sodium. Also, many salt substitutes contain potassium chloride. Although potassium can lessen some of the problems from excess sodium, too much potassium can be harmful if you have kidney problems or if you’re taking medications for congestive heart failure or high blood pressure that cause potassium retention.

Sodium: Cut back gradually

Your taste for salt is acquired, so you can learn to enjoy less. Decrease your use of salt gradually and your taste buds will adjust. After a few weeks of cutting back on salt, you probably won’t miss it, and some foods may even taste too salty. Start by using no more than 1/4 teaspoon of added salt daily, and then gradually reduce to no salt add-ons. As you use less salt, your preference for it diminishes, allowing you to enjoy the taste of the food itself, with heart-healthy benefits.

3) How to get the best nutrition from a Vegetarian diet ?

The key to a healthy vegetarian diet, like any diet, is to enjoy a variety of foods. No single food can provide all the nutrients your body needs. The more restrictive a diet is, the more challenging it is to get all the nutrients you need. A vegan diet, for example, eliminates food sources of vitamin B-12, as well as milk products, which are good sources of calcium. Therefore, you may need to make an extra effort to ensure that your vegetarian diet includes sufficient quantities of the following nutrients:

Calcium helps build and maintain strong teeth and bones. Milk and low-fat dairy foods are highest in calcium. Dark green vegetables, such as turnip and collard greens and broccoli, are good plant sources when eaten in sufficient quantities. Calcium-enriched and fortified products, including juices, cereals, soy milk, soy yogurt and tofu, are other options.

Iodine is a component in thyroid hormones, which help regulate metabolism, growth and function of many key organs, such as the brain, heart, kidney and thyroid. Vegans may not consume enough iodine and be at risk of iodine deficiency and possibly goiter. In addition, foods such as soybeans, cruciferous vegetables and sweet potatoes may promote goiter. Because food manufacturers may not use iodized salt in processed foods, vegans may want to ensure that they use salt with iodine at the table or in cooking. Just 1/4 teaspoon provides a significant amount of iodine.

Iron is a crucial component of red blood cells. Dried beans and peas, lentils, enriched cereals, whole-grain products, dark leafy green vegetables and dried fruit are good sources of iron. Because iron isn’t as easily absorbed from plant sources, the recommended intake of iron for vegetarians is almost double that recommended for nonvegetarians. To help your body absorb iron, eat foods rich in vitamin C, such as strawberries, citrus fruits, tomatoes, cabbage and broccoli, at the same time as you’re eating iron-containing foods.

Omega-3 fatty acids are important for cardiovascular health as well as eye and brain development. Vegetarian diets that do not include fish and eggs are generally low in active forms of omega-3 fats. Because conversion of the plant-based omega-3 to the types used by humans is inefficient, you may want to consider fortified products or supplements or both.

Protein helps maintain healthy skin, bones, muscles and organs. Eggs and dairy products are good sources, and you don’t need to eat large amounts to meet your protein needs. You can also get sufficient protein from plant-based foods if you eat a variety of them throughout the day. Plant sources include soy products and meat substitutes, legumes, lentils, nuts, seeds and whole grains.

Vitamin B-12 is necessary to produce red blood cells and prevent anemia. This vitamin is found almost exclusively in animal products, so it can be difficult to get enough B-12 on a vegan diet. Vitamin B-12 deficiency may go undetected in people who eat a vegan diet. This is because the vegan diet is rich in a vitamin called folate, which may mask deficiency in vitamin B-12 until severe problems occur. For this reason, it’s important for vegans to consider vitamin supplements, vitamin-enriched cereals and fortified soy products.

Vitamin D plays an important role in bone health. Vitamin D is added to cow’s milk and some brands of soy milk (be sure to check the label), and some cereals and margarines. However, if you don’t eat enough fortified foods and have limited sun exposure, you may need supplementation with vitamin D-2 (derived from plants).

Zinc is an essential component of many enzymes and plays a role in cell division and in formation of proteins. Like iron, zinc is not as easily absorbed from plant sources as it is from animal products. Cheese is a good option if you eat dairy products. Plant sources of zinc include whole grains, soy products, legumes, nuts and wheat germ.

If you’re not following a vegetarian diet but you’re thinking of trying it, here are some ideas to help you get started:
Ramp up. Each week increase the number of meatless meals you already enjoy, such as spaghetti with tomato sauce or vegetable stir-fry.
Learn to substitute. Take favorite recipes and try the same without meat. For example, make vegetarian chili by leaving out the meat and adding an extra can of black beans. Or make fajitas using extra-firm tofu rather than chicken. You may be surprised to find that many dishes require only simple substitutions.

Branch out. Scan the Internet for vegetarian menus. Buy or borrow vegetarian cookbooks. Check out ethnic restaurants to sample new vegetarian cuisines. The more variety you bring to your vegetarian diet, the more likely you’ll be to meet all your nutritional needs.

Achievements in Healthcare
Dr Zinobia Madan is recently the recipient of “Rajiv Gandhi Excellence Award for Innovations in Healthcare, 2014” & “Jewel of India Award for Landmark Contributions in Healthcare, 2014”

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