Your body needs energy, protein, minerals, vitamins and fibre. In order to get all of these it is important to have a varied and balanced diet, and to eat the right amount. Your body ‘burns’ food to get energy, the amount of energy provided by food is measured in units called calories.
How many calories do you need? This depends on your weight and on what you do. When you are asleep, your body uses nearly one calorie an hour for every kilogram of weight. So a person who weighs seventy kilos uses about 560 calories while sleeping for eight hours; in other words, he needs about 1680 calories just to stay alive for 24 hours, even without doing anything. More calories are needed for different activities – from 100 calories an hour for reading or watching TV, to 350 calories an hour for playing football. To calculate the number of calories needed per day for an average person, first find out that person’s ideal weight. (Your ideal weight is what you should weigh. It depends on your height and your build, and it may be very different from your present weight!) Then multiply the correct weight (in kilograms) by 40 for a woman or 46 for a man. A 37-kilo woman may need about 2300 calories a day – more if she does heavy physical work or a lot of sport, less if she is very inactive.
If you eat more than you need, the extra calories turn into fat; if you eat less than you need, the body burns fat to get energy and you lose weight. One way of losing weight is by dieting – eating less. Another way is to go on eating the same amount, but to increase your body’s need for energy by taking more exercise. But be careful. It is important to slim – or to start an exercise programme – gradually. Don’t try to lose a lot of weight fast. It doesn’t usually work, and it can be dangerous.
1. How many calories does a 55-kilo woman use while sleeping for 7 hours?
2. How many calories do you need to stay alive for 24 hours without doing anything?
3. How many calories will you need to watch TV for three hours and then play football for an hour?
4. What is your ideal weight?
5. How many calories do you need a day?
6. What will happen if an inactive 55-kilo woman eats 2500 calories a day?
7. What will happen if an average 70-kilo man eats 2500 calories a day?
C. Continue the list of some useful health and fitness tips:
●Do some sort of moderate aerobic activity, like brisk walking, for at least 2½ hours each week. You can spread out these 150 minutes any way you like. For example, you could:
−take two 11-minute walks every day, or a single 22-minute walk every day;
−take a half-hour walk 3 days a week, and on the other 4 days take a 15-minute walk;
−take a 45-minute walk every other day.
●Or do more vigorous activities, like running, for at least 1¼ hours a week. This activity makes you breathe harder and have a much faster heartbeat than when you are resting. Again, you can spread out these 75 minutes any way you like. For example, you could:
−run for 25 minutes 3 times a week;
−run for 15 minutes 5 times a week.
●Water helps in losing weight. Sufficient intake of water helps in flushing toxic wastes from the body and keeping your skin moist. A glass of water before meals reduces the quantity of food you eat.
●Substitute green tea instead of reaching for a soda or cola. Green tea has the ability to increase the metabolic rate, speed up oxidation of fats and help people lose weight.
● Always warm up before a vigorous exercise to avoid muscle tear.
● Climbing stairs everyday results in reduced blood lactate levels and increases HDC (good cholesterol levels).
D. Match the three kinds of fitness with their meanings to answer the following question: What types of physical activity does fitness improve?
Aerobic fitness Muscle fitness Flexibility
1) The ability to move your joints and muscles through their full range of motion. Stretching is an exercise that helps you to be more flexible.
2) Building stronger muscles and increasing how long you can use them (called endurance). Activities like weight lifting and push-ups can improve your muscular fitness.
3) Increasing how well your body uses oxygen. This depends on the condition of your heart, lungs, and muscles. Any activity that makes your heart beat faster, such as walking or running, can improve aerobic fitness. Aerobic fitness is sometimes called "cardio." "Cardio" is short for "cardiovascular training," which is any exercise—including jogging, cycling, or swimming—that makes your heart work harder for a while.