In this modern age, we're probably not the only ones who feel that all women should say "Yes, I am sexy," no matter what our shape. In her book Sexy at Any Age, fitness inspiration and consultant to the stars Nadine Tengco tackles what it means to be sexy. And guess what -- it depends on you. Each person can define what sexy is or what it feels.
We can't deny, however, that healthy eating, physical activity, and self-confidence do a lot to make us feel sexy. As a mother, it's a challenge to pull this off, what with your never-ending to-do list. You barely have time for yourself, let alone exercise, and you miss your pre-pregnant body. Sometimes (or most of the time), we turn to food to give us joy.
Choreographer and mom of three Georcelle Dapat-Sy, who is also featured in Nadine's book, used to to cope with stress of being a career mom and wife so Nadine advised her to practice mindful eating -- eat at least one healthy meal that engages all senses, without distractions. You'll learn to enjoy your food and allows you to be more sensitive to the body cues that tell you you're already full. Fiber-rich foods, which are high in nutrients but low in calories, also help. When you eat slowly and consume more fiber you cut down on sweet cravings and make you feel full for longer periods.
Aside from going to healthier food options and eating in moderation, Nadine stresses that sleep is vital to overall health. Sleep deprivation lead to elevated cortisol (stress hormone). Too much stress could make you fat as it makes you crave for more sugar and carbs.
Nadine also swears by detox, a practice that she defines as "eliminating common allergens, artificial preservatives, and all the processed foods." The fitness guru suggests you incorporate these detoxifying foods in your daily intake:
1. Herb-infused water It's very important to hydrate. It aids in flushing and stops that bloating. Dehydration causes water retention, which in turn leads to water retention.
2. Anti-inflammatory teas Ginger tea (salabat) should be a staple in your pantry. Go for freshly-boiled ginger (not the bottled kind). Turmeric (luyang dilaw) works just as well.
3. Carminative teas Choose tea instead of coffee. Opt for peppermint, bergamot, and chamomile, which are Nadine's faves. They help fight gas and flatulence.
4. Anti-bloat herbs and spices Turmeric, tarragon, mint or peppermint, lemongrass, ginger, basil, pandan leaf, cinnamon, chamomile, and cloves are just but a few options out there.
5. Anti-bloat veggies Veggies are high in water, nutrients, and fiber. Nadine's suggestions are cooked chayote, squash or pumpkin, upo, green papaya, zucchini, and asparagus.
6. Papaya and banana Fruits are healthy food, but some are also high in fructose so eat those in moderation. Papaya has anti-inflammatory enzyme papain, which helps break down fiber. Bananas contain potassium that helps relive water retention.
7. Protein Protein has a diuretic effect on the body that causes you to urinate more often. Choose lean chicken and fish. You can cook it in any way but not deep-fry. Use minimal oil and serve without calorie-dense sauces or gravy.
8. Digestive enzymes Digestive enzyme supplements help you break down fats, carbs, proteins for better digestion. They are allies in preventing belly bloat.
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The road to feeling sexy even if you're a mom starts with what you eat. Physical activity or exercise is also vital. Meditation also helps center your mind, which could boost your confidence in any endeavor you wish to tackle. Being and feeling sexy can be done even through little things you can do every day. Start now.
In her book, Sexy At Any Age, Nadine Tengco shares more tips and her personal secrets and useful recipes to looking good, feeling great, and finding motivation to reclaiming your body no matter what age you are. Sexy at Any Age by Nadine Tengco, co-presented by Century Tuna, is out now in bookstores, newsstands, convenience stores, and supermarkets nationwide for P295.