Ajit Gandhi explains how healthy habits adopted during the pandemic can help us lead a healthier and environment friendly lifestyle.
National Youth Day, celebrated January 12, marks the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda.
It celebrates the youth of India, motivates them to make smarter life decisions and build a better life for themselves and the environment.
The pandemic in hindsight opened doors and opportunities to adopt a more active and healthy lifestyle.
We saw how people, young and old, adopted hobbies beyond digital screens and found alternative and sustainable products which in a pre-Covid world they wouldn’t think of.
Going forward, here are some easy and healthy habits our youngsters can adopt in 2021:
1. Go Organic
Healthy eating as a habit was a very quick adoption as pandemic erupted and continues to be a part of the youth lifestyle.
Right from organic vegetables and fruits to flour, the demand for organic has risen. As per New York based Expert Market Research, the Indian organic food market stood at a value of $849.5 million in 2020.
And this market is further expected to grow at a CAGR of about 20.5% between 2021 and 2026 to reach a value of about $2.601 billion by 2026.
Growing focus on health, immunity, and non-adulterated food consumption is driving this adoption. Items like seeds, organic teas, and even savories like cakes and cookies made from organic flour are now in demand.
So go ahead, and make this healthy switch today.
2. Pedaling/Cycling over Fuel
While cycling is not a new concept, Indian youngsters, including working professionals realised its potential and impact on self and environment health.
The demand for bicycles is unprecedented, a first of its kind trend for the segment.
The All India Bicycle Manufacturers Association said the sales of bicycles went up by over 100 percent in May-September 2020 period.
Focus on fitness, cleaner air, lowering daily stress and convenient mobility is driving interest in the segment.
There is conscious awareness of adopting alternative modes of transportation with pollution levels and fuel costs rising.
Coupled with government initiatives like Delhi EV Policy and Smart Cities mission, sustainable offerings like electric bicycles have become a present reality and will see more traction in 2021.
Good for mental health, fresh air, and edible nutritious plants, gardening was among the top-5 popular things people adopted.
People utilised spaces within their homes to create mini-gardens and bought most of their kits online.
In the time-constrained post-lockdown world, even actors, models and celebrities are sticking to this hobby with DIY gardening kits to keep the anxiety and stress in check.
Scientific research suggests that gardening can do a lot for one’s well being.
Amidst uncertainty, misinformation and still adjusting to the new normal, people took to yoga and meditation to not just reduce stress but increase focus.
People are exploring mindfulness with not just meditation but also yoga, gardening, cooking, spending time in nature or any activity that puts their mind at ease and in the present.
It is also a great way to start one’s morning and set a positive intention for the coming day.
5. Reduce carbon/plastic footprint
Amidst climate changes and environmental threats we have seen in the last couple of years, people have proactively started engaging in practices that curtail or reduce carbon/plastic footprint.
These include the adoption of biodegradable bags, planting more trees around you, opting for plastic-free cutlery, biodegradable toiletries, upcycling old furniture, refuse the use of single-use plastics, and more.
If you adopt these smart changes into your lifestyle today, perhaps you may inspire several others around you to do the same.
A few small steps by each of us will go a long way as we find new ways of living in 2021. Let us all do our bit.
Ajit Gandhi is vice president-sales and marketing, AlphaVector, a bicycle design company.