Answers to some nagging issues on diet

Is it ok to skip breakfast?
Breakfast is a very important meal of the day and therefore should not be skipped. When skipped, your body and brain lacks glucose, a vital fuel necessary for the body and the brain.

In response, the body is able to produce some glucose in the liver for the brain. This helps sustain you for some time. If this goes on for a very long time, as in days, weeks and years; your body suffers. You can end up with a very high cholesterol level; which in turn can destroy your blood vessels and cause you heart diseases.

Those who skip breakfast also end up with very low metabolic rates in general. This means that with time, their body learns not to use food energy as quickly as it should. This leaves room for energy storage. They end up growing fat soon and can become fat even if they eat just a little amount of food.

Is it good to skip meals to lose weight?
It is bad to skip meals if you want to lose weight. There are problems such as bad blood sugar control, high blood cholesterol, weight gain, easy fatigability, among others that are associated with skipping of meals.
To lose weight, there are two things one must do consistently. These are the reduction in the amount of energy acquired from all the foods and drinks taken daily.

Secondly, there is the need to increase how much energy you use by way of moving the body while doing house chores such as sweeping, mopping, washing your car, engaging in exercises such as brisk walking, skipping rope, running, swimming, walking/running on the treadmill among others.

Get knowledge on how to cook your food well, eat them at the right times and exercise your body; the weight will come down little by little. When you lose weight this way, you also learn to maintain the lost weight.

Can I use salt to wash my vegetables?
It is a common practice to use salt solution to wash food items, especially vegetables. I suggest that we stop this practice simply because our salt consumption is too high above the recommendations.
Washing them with salt, cooking and adding salt and cubes to the stews/soups that these vegetables are used for makes too much salt/sodium available for consumption.
Besides, salt does not effectively deal with the germs that might be on those vegetables. It is better to wash your vegetables in slight soapy water.

Put a few drops of mild liquid soap in water and wash your vegetables such as okro, tomato, garden eggs, salad leaves, among others. You can then rinse them with enough water.
Do this because soap kills and removes germs more effectively than vinegar, and salt solution. That is why we are advised to wash our hands with soap and water to prevent cholera and ebola.

My weight never goes up, I am worried!
You do not have to worry that your weight is refusing to increase. For every height, there is a corresponding weight range that you must carry for health and wellness.
If your weight is lower than this, then you have to increase your weight. If you weigh higher than this, then you must reduce weight.

The lower limit is the weight that should make your body mass index at least 18kg/m2. The upper limit is the weight that should make your body mass index 25kg/m2.

For example; an adult whose height is 1.68m will have a healthy weight range of 50.8kg – 70.56kg. Most adults are likely to either fall within the normal weight range or above the range. Thus, most lean people still have the right weight for their height.

This is the reason why anyone who weighs the same from year-to-year should not ideally be worried about their weight; and also think about gaining weight.
Your weight will increase when you start giving birth if you are a lady. , Written by Wise Chukwudi Letsa

• The writer of this article is a Dietician at the Trust Hospital & Clinics. He is the Author of the book titled: “Diet, Health & Wellness”. Wise Letsa also produces video and audio diet advice on CDs titled: “Eating for health & Wellness”. For copies of his book and CDs,Email:; Website:

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