Fathers mostly stop their children from eating junk food. They hand out health tips every now and then and yet they are the ones who hardly pay any attention to their health. Protruding bellies, lack of exercise, unhealthy eating habits and stress stand a risk of developing chronic diseases like diabetes, blood pressure and high blood cholesterol among others. This makes a dual approach of daily exercising and healthy eating compulsory. On Father’s Day 2024, health experts share tips on how to get fathers motivated to take steps towards healthy living. 

Dr Tvisha Parikh, consultant sports and exercise medicine physician at Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital says, “One cannot pour from an empty cup. It is essential for fathers to stay fit to be able to take good care of their families. Moreover, by choosing to stay healthy, they can also act as a role model for their kids in today`s technology-driven, sedentary world.” 

She suggests picking a sport that both you and your father enjoy. This can be a great start to a daily workout regimen. This includes going to the gym together, going for morning walks, taking up swimming, skipping or playing cricket. 

Parikh says, “I have had fathers come in asking for ways to become flexible and strong to be able to play with kids, irrespective of their age. These are fathers who willingly participate in sports competitions conducted by their children’s schools. However, such one-time participation often leads to injuries due to rigidity in muscles. It is thus necessary to exercise daily if one wishes to gain flexibility and strength.” 

Common exercises for daily workout 
According to Parikh, the below-given stretches are best and suit everyone.
1. Jumping jacks 
2. Squat challenges 
3. Skipping 
4. Push-ups 
5. Bear crawl 

The expert also suggests focusing on cardiovascular fitness associated with certain types of exercises that are linked to longevity, enhanced quality of life and prevention of health concerns. She says muscle strengthening exercises help in the prevention of sarcopenia or muscle wasting which is otherwise inevitable with increasing age. 

As more people are choosing to become parents at a later stage in their life, it becomes even more important for them to actively engage in physical activities and exercises to prolong their life. Besides physical benefits, exercising regularly also offers multiple emotional and mental health benefits like improved self-confidence and the release of endorphin that makes one feel good. It also helps manage anxiety and depression. 

Recreational activities to stay fit 
Taking holidays involving activities like skiing, water sports or going for treks is another fun way to stay fit and active. It will allow fathers to take their much-needed break from a monotonous and stressful life and help them kick back and relax. Rest is also an essential factor to stay fit. 

Dietary requirements to stay fit 
Following a balanced diet is uncompromisable. It also plays a huge role in helping prevent and manage many chronic diseases. Meals should include a portion of vegetables, protein and complex carbohydrates. Consumption of fruits on a daily basis is also crucial. Fathers must consume oils and fats in optimum quantities and quality through nuts and seeds. Fried and processed foods should be avoided or kept to a bare minimum. 

Adopting these food habits will set an example for the children too at an early age.

Also Read: Father`s Day 2023: 7 ways to celebrate the day with your superhero

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