Multipure wants you to be your best, and to live your best. That means helping you beyond the best hydration, by helping you live a healthier life. This month – March 2021 – we are spotlighting the effects of food and nutrition on health. For this article, we focus on some important guidelines and tips on proper nutrition, and the positive benefits that healthy eating can have on your wellbeing.
- Do Not Drink Sweetened Drinks
At Multipure, we understand the importance of drinking cleaner, healthier water, and the importance of proper hydration. This guideline is an extension of that: Don’t drink sweetened drinks. Sweetened, sugary drinks are essentially empty calories, offering very little nutrition. Of course, it’s almost impossible to avoid some sweeteners in beverages, but when we say “don’t drink sweetened drinks,” we’re generally referring to overly-sugary sodas, fruit juices, coffee drinks, energy drinks, and any other beverage where sugar is a major ingredient. And if you do drink sweetened fruit juices, be conscious of how much you drink, and limit yourself.
First, sugary soft drinks are linked to increased caloric intake and increased weight gain. This is made worse by another study that found that sugar-sweetened beverages don’t make you feel full. So, when you drink your sugar, you drink more of it than you should – because you don’t feel full – which leads to drinking more sugar calories, which leads to an increase in weight. And because excess sugar is typically turned into fat in the body, this also leads to an increase in fatty tissue in the body – specifically, belly fat. This is an issue that can develop even at an early age, as children who consume sugary drinks have demonstrated up to a 60% increased risk in obesity.
Sugary soft drink consumption has been linked to a host of serious ailments, such as an increased chance of gout and an increased chance of dental cavities. Excessive blood sugar levels and increased body fat are directly linked to a higher risk of type 2 diabetes and a higher risk of heart disease. One health study even found that people who regularly drank two cans of sugary soda a week had an 87% increase chance of pancreatic cancer!
It is alarming how profound an effect regular consumption of sugary drinks can have on the body, and the negative impact that can occur even at a young age.
- Drink More Water
This should seem obvious after the previous guideline, but instead of drinking sugary soft drinks, drink more water. It will hydrate your body without the negative effects of sugar and other additives.
The guideline that has been touted for years is the 8×8 rule that recommends people drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day for proper hydration. At Multipure, we recommend a newer iteration of this guideline, which takes into account individual body weight: divide your weight in half, then take that value as the number of ounces of water you should drink per day. For example, someone who weighs 160 pounds should drink 80 ounces of water a day to be properly hydrated (equivalent to ten 8-ounce glasses of water).
Drinking more water has an important effect beyond hydration for middle-aged or older adults. Specifically, drinking water before meals leads to greater weight loss than those who do not drink water before eating. This is significant in that age and weight are contributing factors toward the development of diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. A simple habit of drinking water before eating can have a significant positive impact.
- Eat Vegetables and Fruits
Vegetables are healthy for you, because they are low in calories, but high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Certain vegetables stand out even more for their health benefits, such as:
- Spinach: One cup of spinach provides over 50% of your daily vitamin A needs and your entire recommended vitamin K needs – all at just 7 calories a cup. Spinach is rich in antioxidants, and may contribute to better heart health and lower blood pressure.
- Carrots: One cup of carrots offers a whopping 428% of your daily vitamin A needs. Carrots are also rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium, and may also reduce the risk of lung and prostate cancer.
- Broccoli: Broccoli is rich in vitamin K, vitamin C, folate, manganese, and potassium. Broccoli contains sulforaphane, a compound that may prevent cancer growth.
- Garlic: Used as a medicinal plant for thousands of years, garlic can decrease blood sugar levels, decrease bad cholesterol levels, and increase good cholesterol levels.
- Ginger: Ginger significantly reduces nausea, and contains anti-inflammatory properties that may aid against arthritis, lupus, or gout.
While vegetables are almost universally praised for their health benefits, some concern exists over the high sugar content of many fruits. Even though fruits do contain sugar – hence their natural sweetness – they offset that with high levels of fiber, water, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Fruits can also be incredibly filling, causing you to eat less and thus reducing your overall caloric intake.
When considering the nutritional value of fruits, an easy guideline is to eat fruits with their skin, such as apples or berries, because much of the fiber and nutrients are contained in the skin of the fruit.
One thing to avoid is sugary fruit drinks. Many fruit juices on the market are not much more than flavored sugar water, and may be just as bad as soda. While some fruit juices do contain many beneficial vitamins and nutrients, the ones that would be best to drink are the juices that are “freshly squeezed,” i.e., not from concentrate, and without added sugar.
- Avoid Diets
Proper nutrition and hydration can lead to a healthier body and a healthier weight. In contrast, diets can actually lead to weight gain. Drastic caloric intake limits can lead to an increase in appetite hormones and a slowed metabolism, and the majority of people who diet regain any lost weight, with some increasing in weight beyond their pre-diet weight.
Instead of focusing on dieting and specific types of diet programs, focus on healthier habits to achieve better nutrition, health, and weight loss. Some of these habits include:
- Eat less sugar, starch, and processed carbohydrates, and eat more fiber and whole grains.
- Eat fewer carbohydrates, and eat more protein, leafy vegetables, and healthy fats (olive oil and avocado oil are considered healthy fats).
- Exercise regularly. A mix of weight training and cardiovascular exercise offers the most benefit.
- Be conscious of your food portions and food intake. It may not be necessary to count calories, but simply being aware of how much you eat can help you control how much you eat.
While this is not a comprehensive guide to nutrition, health, and wellness, these simple guidelines offer a solid start toward healthier eating and a healthier life in general. At Multipure, our concern extends beyond hydration and clean drinking water – although that will always be our driving force; we are here to help people improve themselves, to help people achieve better health and lives for themselves and their families. For Life. For You.