Health & Wellness, Lifestyle, My Personal

7 Tips to Make Healthier Choices for Busy People | Dixon Thum | TEDxMCKL

This is a major throwback. Back in 2018, I was invited to speak for TEDxMCKL with the theme, Beyond Tomorrow. TEDxMCKL aims to provide a clearer vision for the future, with credible and influential speakers discussing topics like health, technology, and volunteerism to empower the youth and help create a brighter world. At that time, I was a Fitness Coach and I shared about tips for a healthier lifestyle, covering topics such as nutrition, hydration, carbohydrates, protein, fats, fruits and vegetables, and staying active. I am an ACE certified personal trainer and fitness enthusiast, who always emphasizes on the importance of discipline in achieving fitness goals. At that point of time, I have given talks at various corporate companies and ran my own Fitness & Nutrition Support Program. Looking back at what I have shared back then, I find the points are still very much relevant and relatable until now. Hence I want to re-share and document the points here in my blog. Here you are – 7 Tips to Make Healthier Choices for Busy People.

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Tip #1:
Eat a carbohydrate-rich meal every day. There is a false belief that carbohydrates should be avoided in order to lose weight. We need carbohydrates to function properly because they give us energy. Simple and complex carbohydrates are the two different types of carbohydrates. Following digestion, simple carbohydrates give you immediate energy, but if you don’t burn off the calories, they’ll be stored as fat. It is therefore advisable to choose the healthier alternatives, which are complex carbohydrates. Brown sugar, brown rice, oatmeal, whole-wheat bread and sweet potatoes are a few examples of complex carbohydrates. These are great alternatives to white carbohydrates. Furthermore, choosing rice over noodles when ordering food is preferable because rice is a natural food as opposed to noodles, which are processed food.

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Tip #2:
Protein is a necessary nutrient that helps with tissue repair and muscle growth. Protein can be found in a variety of foods, including milk, yoghurt, chicken, fish, and meat. It is strongly advised, especially after exercise. Whether protein supplements are preferable to real food is a frequently asked question. The availability of healthy food near your gym will determine the answer. It’s best to choose a meal with protein if you have access to healthy food. If that isn’t an option, think about bringing a protein powder to the gym to use as a muscle-replenishing snack after your workout.

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Tip #3:
The third tip talks about choosing the right fats to eat. It’s critical to understand the distinction between good and bad fats. Monounsaturated fats, found in nuts, avocado, and olive oil, as well as polyunsaturated fats like Omega-3 and Omega-6, which are found in foods like salmon, are healthy fats that can be consumed in moderation. Saturated fats, such as those in milk, yoghurt, and animal oils, are also safe to eat but should only be consumed in moderation. Trans fats, which are present in processed foods, fried foods, and pastries, should be avoided. Regular trans fat consumption can cause cardiovascular diseases.

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Tip #4:
The fourth piece of advice is to include fresh fruits and vegetables at every meal. These are significant sources of the vitamins, minerals, and fibre needed for a balanced diet. It’s important to stay away from processed vegetables and dried or preserved fruits that are loaded with flavourings, additives, and preservatives.

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Tip #5:
Staying hydrated is crucial for our health, so it is advised that we consume at least 2 litres of water daily. It is advised to increase your water intake to 3 litres per day if you engage in strenuous physical activity or perspire a lot in order to replace the water that has been lost by your body. A common question people ask is whether they should drink water before or after meals. Simply drink water whenever you feel thirsty is the simple solution. It’s crucial to pay attention to your body’s signals and drink plenty of water throughout the day.

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Tip #6:
The five suggestions listed above, all of which have to do with nutrition, demonstrate how important it is to maintain an active lifestyle in order to live a healthier one. It’s not as difficult as it may seem to live a healthier lifestyle if you have a basic understanding of nutrition. But it’s important to burn off the food you eat. By engaging in activities you enjoy, such as bootcamps outdoors or indoor activities like Zumba, yoga, or gym classes, you can maintain your level of activity. Cycling, canoeing, hiking, or jungle trekking on a regular basis can all be advantageous. To burn off what you eat, aim for at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise each day. The final advice is presented here.

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Tip #7:
Discipline is utmost important in leading a healthier lifestyle. Lack of discipline will impede your progress towards your fitness goals, even if you are aware of tips one through six. Without self-control, you might find it difficult to follow a healthy diet, drink 2 to 3 litres of water per day, or work out for 30 to 60 minutes each day. Thus, the main element that determines whether you will be successful in implementing a healthier lifestyle is discipline.

Enjoy the full version of my talk in TEDxMCKL back in 1 September 2018:

Health & Wellness, My Personal

Top 5 Workouts Suitable for Men Over 40

At my age, my health comes first. To maintain my health, stamina, and fitness level, I exercise in addition to eating the right things and maintaining a balanced diet. Recently, I’ve become more aware of some physical differences between my body and that of my younger self. I now need to take even better care of my health because of this. If you’re also a man over 40, here are the top 5 exercises I prefer to do and believe fit my lifestyle.

  1. Strength Training

For men over 40, strength training is one of the most crucial exercises. This is due to the fact that men lose muscle mass as they age, which can result in decreased strength and functionality. Exercises for building and maintaining muscle mass, which are crucial for general health and longevity, include bodyweight exercises, resistance band exercises, and weightlifting.

Strength training can also aid in boosting bone density, which is essential to fend off age-related bone deterioration and lower the risk of osteoporosis. Strength training can also aid in enhancing balance and coordination, which can lower the risk of accidents and falls.

  1. Cardiovascular Exercise

Exercise your cardiovascular system regularly, especially if you’re a man over 40. Running, cycling, swimming, or brisk walking are examples of moderate- to high-intensity cardio exercises that can improve cardiovascular health, lower the risk of developing chronic illnesses like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke, and increase endurance.

Cardiovascular exercise can additionally assist with weight management, which can be difficult for men over 40 due to changes in hormone and metabolism levels. Retaining a healthy weight lowers the risk of developing chronic illnesses and enhances general quality of life.

  1. Yoga

For men over 40, yoga is a great form of exercise because it can help with flexibility, balance, and overall body awareness. Men’s bodies tend to become stiffer and less flexible as they age, which can limit their mobility and increase their risk of injury. Stretching, breathing, and other yoga practises can help increase flexibility and lower the risk of injuries.

Additionally, yoga can support mindfulness and stress reduction, which can be advantageous for general health and wellbeing. Chronic stress can cause a number of health issues, including heart disease, high blood pressure, anxiety, and depression. Yoga can help you manage stress and enhance your mental health.

  1. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

Short bursts of intense exercise, followed by rest or low-intensity activity periods, make up high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Because it can increase metabolic rate, improve cardiovascular fitness, and promote weight loss, HIIT can be a good workout option for men over 40.

For men over 40 who are at an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, HIIT can also help improve insulin sensitivity. Exercises like burpees, jumping jacks, and sprinting are examples of HIIT activities that can help you lose weight and build muscle.

  1. Stretching and Mobility Exercises

For men over 40, stretching and mobility exercises are crucial because they can increase flexibility and lower the risk of injuries. Improve flexibility and lower your risk of injury by incorporating mobility exercises like foam rolling, dynamic stretching, and static stretching.

Stretching and mobility exercises can also speed up recovery time and lessen muscle soreness, which is important for men over 40 who might need more time to recover from workouts.

In conclusion, the exercises mentioned above can be very beneficial for men over 40. Before beginning any new exercise programme, it’s crucial to speak with a qualified fitness expert or healthcare provider, especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions.

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