NUTRITIONIST AVAANTI DESHPAANDE

Learn the art to eat smart!!

Navratri special – healthy fasting & feasting

Navratri is one of the important festivals in the Indian homes. Navratri is traditionally associated with worshiping goddess Durga and her nine recarnations. While Navratri has definite religious believes for fasting especially a connect with the almighty is surely has a lot of scientific significance too. Navratis occurring at two separate times of the year are usually marked during the change of the seasons. This change in season will bring the immunity low and also the digestive fire is low. Which is the reason why a lot food like meat, wheat, alcohol or heat generating foods like onion and garlic are avoided.

It can work for your benefit if the food consumed during the fasting is really light to digest and avoid indulging into heavy fried food which often happens during the fasts. The foods allowed or avoided during the fasts can vary but usually the foods commonly consumed include fruits, root vegetables like sweet potatoes, potatoes, cereals like sago, rajgeera, kattu(shingada or waterchesnut), varai, dry fruits like almonds and walnuts and dates or jaggery.

Navratri fasts can be used to your benefit definitely and will speed the process of weight loss if the certain diet principles are followed. However, you end up putting on oodles of weight if the amount of fried foods increase during this time or unfortunately lead to severe acidity or headache if the pattern of eating is erratic.

TIPS FOR HEALTHY FASTING

  1. Avoid keeping large gap in between the meals and stick to having small and frequent meals. This keeps the glucose in check and prevents acidity
  2. Try to consume a combination of cereals like varai, water chestnut, rajgeera with protein like curds, skimmed milk or cottage cheese like kheer with rajgeera and milk or varai rice with raita
  3. Consume roasted or steamed foods instead of deep fried foods
  4. Indulge more in almonds and walnuts, pumpkin seeds and avoid dry fruits like cashews
  5. Consume more of low calorie fruits like apple, pears guava watermelon muskmelon instead of banana or pineapple
  6. A lot of foods during fasting have a great nutritive value like kattu (buckwheat), varagu, makahana, amaranth.
  7. Do not forget to drink lots of water during the fasts.
  8. Substitute sugar with jaggery or dates
  9. Consume low fat skimmed milk instead of high fat one
  10. Avoid sugar craving by consuming fruits or a few khajur
  11. Make use of sweet potatoes over potatoes are they are low on the glycemic load.

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