Staying Healthy on a Budget in Korea

CONTRIBUTED BY JANVIKA SHAH

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Throughout the year I spent living in Korea, I starting hearing a similar trend regarding weight loss for women. I heard that initially, women lost weight the first few weeks living in Korea and then the pounds starting piling on. My weight wavered about five to ten pounds the entire time I was in Korea and not surprisingly, coincided with the amount of exercise I was doing and what I was eating. Here are some tips.

  1. Eat your Kimchi. Kimchi is loaded with probiotics to keep your gut healthy. Your immunity is 70% reliant on your gut health (the ratio of good bacteria vs. bad bacteria.) Kimchi helps with digestion and fires up your metabolism.
  2. Eat as many local greens and seasonal fruit as possible. You can either blend these together for smoothies or roast them in a toaster oven for a tasty snack. You can drizzle olive oil and sprinkle seasonings on your veggies for a salty snack. You can also brush your fruit with coconut oil and bake it on the lowest heat for 1-2 hours for a dried fruit snack.

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  3. Keep an eye out for the air quality index in your city: If the sticker is green, the air is clean. Go outside for a hike, brisk walk or jog.

  4. Stay Fit At Home: Gym memberships can be expensive and the cheapest memberships may be exclusive to inconvenient time frames. These following Youtube channels are wonderful ways to stay fit at home.
    1. Yoga – Ali Kamenova: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKWdI9tLAjc
    2. HIIT workouts- Fitness Blender: https://www.youtube.com/user/FitnessBlender
    3. Pilates, Dance, Yoga, HIIT- Grokker: https://grokker.com/

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  5. Keep consumption of convenient store snacks limited. It’s almost impossible to fight late-night cravings when there are convenient stores on almost every block or corner. However, try to eat meals and keep snack consumptions minimal.
  6. Bibimbap, Barbecue and Shabu Shabu are the healthiest Korean restaurant meals available due to their abundance of vegetables.
  7. Try to cook at home at least five times a week.
  8. Visit iherb.com for gluten free foods, supplements and coconut oil. You receive free shipping for orders over $40.
  9. Try to prepare two-three week meals on the weekend to save you time and energy.
  10. Try to minimize your alcoholic consumption, especially because it’s a big part of Korean culture. For every alcoholic drink, drink a glass of water. Try to sip your alcohol so it lasts longer. Keep in mind that many alcoholic beverages contain chemical additives.

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