Very recently I have come across an article published in a Bengali newspaper that said we can decrease the number of our illness by one third just by changing our lifestyle and that caught my attention and encouraged me to write something about it. First of all, I do believe it hundred percent and I have got handy proof of that in my own life which I would like to share with you today. After moving to Canada in 2017, it was kind of shocking for us, Bangladeshi to see Canadians usually have their dinner by 6 pm. Even I saw people here to have early dinner by 5 pm which is totally unthinkable in Bangladesh’s context where we are used to having evening tea between 6 pm and 8 pm and our average dinner time is between 9 pm and 10 pm. So, it is very natural that this is one of the huge cultural as well as lifestyle difference than that of ours. We noticed another thing that olive oil is huge popular here as cooking oil and surprisingly olive oil is much cheaper here than Bangladesh. At the outset, we continued our Bangladeshi routine here for the first couple of months and then we gradually started to change our dinner time. It specially happened when our 2nd son who goes to junior high school requested to shift the dinner time ahead having seen all his Canadian friends to have very early dinner. We decided to go slow. So, we at first started having dinner between 8 pm and 9 pm. But, as we were late to bed till then, we used to feel a bit hungry after 11 pm and felt like having some bite which ultimately was doing no good. But, afterwards we gradually started to be okay with the new dining schedule and in 2018, we decided to have dinner between 7 pm and 8 pm which was by that time okay with us. And finally in 2019, we decided to have dinner between 6 pm and 7 pm and managed to restrict my eating window by more or less ten hours, for example, having breakfast at around 9 am and finishing last meal of the day, I mean dinner by 7 pm. Oh, I forgot to mention, we started using olive oil as cooking oil for the family simultaneously. Now the reason I am sharing our personal lifestyle changing story is, in my last lipid profile test, HDL, LDL, SPGT were found in very good condition compared to last year or the other year’s result. This is very stress reliving news for a 50-year old guy like me with a pre-diabetic status. And all these have been possible mainly because of changing meal time, eliminating most of the processed food from menu, adding olive oil for better immune system (mustard oil would do the same) and eating less in a comparatively small eating window.
Now, look at the picture of 2017. I had fatty lever, high bad cholesterol, high triglyceride and all these have come down only because of changing a bit of my lifestyle. And I would like to say the same thing for all Bangladeshis. If you like to have a healthy life, PLEASE change your life to healthy lifestyle. There is NO other solution. Medications will not be able to give you a permanent solution. Change your lifestyle and only then it is possible to reach that goal. Our excessive eating, unnecessarily eating, 14-hour spread eating etc are leading us to all fatal diseases and obesity. Huge number of people in Bangladesh are suffering from lever disease, kidney disease, cancer and many more fatal disease mainly because of unhealthy lifestyle and food habit. Did you hear this number of illness in Bangladesh just thirty years back? The obvious answer is no. I have another finding which I am sure many will agree that the moment we started using soybean oil as our cooking oil, we paved the ways to invite all the diseases. Highly process soybean oil is a health hazard and if the same oil is used repeatedly, it simply becomes poison which is a common phenomenon in our hotel and restaurants in Bangladesh. Thirty years back the entire country used mustard oil and the number of countrywide cancer patient, kidney patient and lever disease patients were one tenth that time, or less than that. Why not again getting back to mustard oil for the sake of life? And of course, our excessive eating habits over the last two or three decades which highly encouraged hoteliers to establish one food shop every ten to twenty yards even at small towns of Bangladesh. People just love to eat nowadays! And there is a saying in trend now to support this malpractice, there is no other alternative recreation in our life. So, we love to hang around and eat in the evening. It is not only evening, we just love to eat all day long as long as we are awake and we always look for reasons to eat. Compared to thirty years back, we are eating double or triple in quantity now and having much more less active life. Children hardly play cricket or football in the field nowadays. They play all the games on the screen and have potato chips simultaneously. And that’s how a new English word ‘mouse potato’ entered in Oxford English dictionary in 2003. There is another thing which worsens the scenario, many people love not only to eat outside home frequently but also love to post all their outdoor eatery ventures on all social platforms which as a result tempt all their friends and family to do the same. This vicious cycle is on and at the end of the day; it is taking heavy toll on us. We never think, this excessive eating will never be tolerated by our body and our metabolic system and at one time, it will revolt. And that’s what exactly is happening and we are the ultimate sufferer in all respect.
In conclusion, I would like to say, it is REALLY high time we started realizing the bitter truth and result of excessive eating and sedentary lifestyle. If we don’t have a healthy body, NOTHING can make us happy. And for a healthy body, we must change our lifestyle for our own sake.
Communication Trainer & YouTuber