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How to lose weight Post-pregnancy
We are all aware of how certain foods affect our overall health and weight. There are foods that work more than just boosting your metabolism or keeping a check on your blood sugar levels. Some foods can even improve your skin’s quality!
Here are some foods you can incorporate in your diet for healthy, glowing skin:
Tomatoes: The chemical that imparts tomato its red colour, lycopene, has amazing benefits for your skin. Lycopene is an antioxidant that can brighten skin and slow down aging. The best way to reap its benefits is to eat tomato-based foods 3-5 times in a week.
Green Tea: Loaded with antioxidants, and acne-fighting powers, the humble green tea can protect your skin like no other. From acne to dull skin to aging, 3 to 5 cups of green tea can keep all that at bay, and give you healthy, glowing skin.
Berries: Berries that are deeply coloured, such as cherries, strawberries and blueberries, are packed with antioxidants, which can counter blemishes and add that coveted glow to your face.
Seafood and Fish: Seafood and fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids—a source of good fats. Eating good amounts of fats actually slows the process of wrinkling and combats acne problems, and everybody knows these two skin problems are a glowing skin’s biggest enemies. You can eat 5 servings of fish in a week to make your skin supple and glow.
Pumpkin Seeds: It’s not surprising that pumpkin seeds are called superfoods. These minuscule seeds contain numerous essential minerals like zinc, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, and manganese. They are rich in antioxidants and provide generous quantities of vitamins E and A, and contain essential vitamins including vitamin K and B. It protects your cell membranes, helps maintain collagen, promotes skin renewal, and anti-aging skin care. Enjoy pumpkin seeds on their own as a snack, add them into a homemade trail mix, or sprinkle them on yogurt or oatmeal.
Carrots: Carrots are rich in beta carotene, which prevents cell degeneration. It slows down aging and adds a healthy glow to your skin. Carrots contain vitamin A, which has been found to have beneficial effects on wrinkles, lines and dull skin. You can drink carrot juice, or put them in your salads to get maximum benefits. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.
Breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day, no matter which culture you belong to. The age old saying goes that you should have breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper. Let's look at some of the menu items, which are not considered ideal for breakfast menus on a regular basis along with a few others which are.
Some of the unhealthiest breakfast foods:
- Chole bhatture or oily pooris: These are favorite items within Indian breakfast menus. However, they are full of oil and saturated fats. Apart from contributing to diabetes and blood pressure, bloating, acidity, and heartburn are also common side effects.
- Pakoras, samosas or kachoris: Common items which are included in many breakfast and snack menus, these oily fries are major contributors to bad cholesterol, reduce good cholesterol and is are major contributors to obesity.
- Sugary cereals: While plain corn flakes are good, sugary cereals have processed sugar and are a no-no for breakfast items as they could cause elevated blood glucose levels and thus cause a host of problems.
- Medu vada: While having a medu vada once or twice is alright, having it as a daily breakfast item will add a lot of oil to your diet and so, should be avoided.
- Bakery items: Many bakery items such as doughnut, Tiffin cakes, and sweet breads usually tend to have a lot of processed sugar, refined flour and additives which can be harmful to your health.
Some healthy breakfast foods:
- Idli: This is a staple breakfast item in southern India and is very healthy as it is prepared by steaming rice mixes. However, reduce spicy chutneys or side dishes while consuming idlis as they can be quite bad for health.
- Upma: Another export of the south, upma is now loved all over India and the world. Made with suji or rawa and very little oil, this is a great and filling breakfast alternative.
- Poha or Chivra pulao: Made from flattened rice flakes, poha, also known as chivda pulao, is a great healthy alternative and should be incorporated in breakfast diets.
- Indian veg sandwiches: As long as the bread is whole wheat, this is a very healthy option as it is usually made with vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers and potatoes and also has chutney as the dressing.
- Dosa: Another great option from southern India, this is a great breakfast food if the sambar and accompanying dishes are cooked in less oil and have fewer spices.
- Khakra: This dish which comes from Gujarat is also a great breakfast item and can also become a low calorie snack for cravings in between meals.
What to eat and what not to eat is a highly confusing dilemma. We want good taste, we wish to stay fit and we desire to have the never say 'no' attitude! But is our diet good enough to support all of it? Well, the true Indian diet surely is!
Make your daily diet, a healthier one by adding some must haves to it.
The Classical Indian diet for good health!
- Black Beans: You ought to begin with that! Though, all sorts of beans are a booster dose for your health, none works better than black beans to boost the mind. Boost your brain power and stay active inside out, all day long! Anthocyanins and antioxidants, which are found in plenty in the black beans, are known to improve brain function.
- Strawberries: They are rich in antioxidants, fiber and vitamin A and C which improve immunity and helps in improving skin texture and overall health.
- Carrots: Sure that calls for being included in the list. Carotenoids are the fat soluble compounds that most orange, red as well as yellow fruits and veggies are spiked with. These compounds have been found to be associated with the reduction of a number of cancerous and timorous cases. They are also known to reduce the severity as well as the risk of conditions which are inflammatory, such as rheumatoid arthritis and asthma.
- Spinach: The greens have never let us down and surely, spinach tops the list. Spinach has folate and plant based Omega-3 in plenty. These help reduce the risk and chances of stroke, heart disease and osteoporosis. Sexual issues related to age are a common problem due to decreased flow of blood to the nether regions. Folate also helps in increasing blood flow to the same, decreasing the risk.
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes top the list to good health due to a major reason. Only 2 things that you need to know are - one, the redder the tomato, the better it is. This is because of being richer in lycopene, which is a powerful antioxidant. Second, the tomatoes which have been processed are absolutely as good as the freshly picked ones due to the ease of absorbance of lycopene by the human body. Various conducted studies have shown that a lycopene rich diet decreases the risk of prostate, skin, bladder, lung and stomach cancers. It also reduces the chances of a coronary artery disease.
Bounce away to good health, the Indian way!
A good night's sleep is very essential for the body and mind to recharge and be ready to function to its full extent each day. Though, the constant change in lifestyle has altered the fixed sleep hours, it is still advisable that for a healthy lifestyle, 7 to 8 hours of sound sleep is essential.
Studies reveal that about 60% of the UK population is sleep deprived, getting 6 or less hours of sleep. Further, studies have shown that there is a good correlation between a person's food habits and the sleep pattern. While some foods are good at inducing sleep, there are others which help you reduce fatigue that sleeplessness brings in.
The following is a list of foods along with their most significant benefits:
- Cherries: Cherries contain Melatonin which controls our biological clock and is often used to combat jetlag. Melatonin improves duration and quality of sleep.
- Bananas: Bananas are loaded with Potassium and Magnesium, which are very good for cardiovascular health and cognitive functioning and are believed to induce peaceful sleep.
- Mangoes: Mangoes help by boosting the immune system and provide a good night's sleep.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are believed to reduce oxidative stress and muscle cell inflammation and are an excellent choice of snack for lack of sleep. Blueberries balance the level of blood sugar and stabilize the hormone of satiety, Leptin, thus, inducing better sleep.
- Milk: A glass of warm milk induces sleep. Add a pinch of cinnamon and see yourself sleep even better. Scientists believe that Tryptophan and Serotonin do the magic. Not just milk, even other dairy products such as cheese can improve your sleep.
- Fish: Salmon, Sardines, and Tuna are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and also contain vitamin B6. All these are believed to improve cognitive state and are believed to induce a restful sleep.
- Nuts: Be it walnuts, pecans or cashews, all nuts have a soothing effect. They are a rich source of Tryptophan, which is an amino acid responsible for sleep. They release Melatonin and Serotonin which regulate the biological clock and manage sleep patterns.
- Herbal tea: For instance, Chamomile tea and Valerian tea act as a mild sedative and encourage a healthy sleep. The whole act of brewing the tea with the aroma wafting through the air is believed to promote a soothing effect too. Green tea is also considered as a god sleep inducing agent.
Summer is at its peak and the mercury level is rising by a notch every day. The scorching sun gives even more reasons to constantly hunt for some cooling and soothing foods which can comfort us. It is the time of year when you get dehydrated easily due to excess sweat and perspiration and that's the time when you want to reach out for something cold like sodas, beverages or even cold water. This is where we go wrong because anything extremely low in temperature can actually constrict our blood vessels and affect the heat loss process in our body. Here are a few tips you need to keep in mind to keep yourself cool:
- Increase your water intake: In high humidity conditions, you do not sweat adequately due to which you cannot release heat efficiently from your body. That is the reason why you need to drink enough water at regular intervals even if you are not thirsty to cool your system.
- Have eatables high in water content: Eat a lot of fresh fruits, raw salads and lightly spiced foods. Fruits and veggies are easy to digest and high in water content and hence help in hydration. Avoid fried and junk foods as they take time to digest and require a lot of water. Spicy foods can also increase body heat.
- Grab naturally cooling drinks: Drink naturally cooling beverages like coconut water, lemon juice, buttermilk and sugarcane juice, etc. Rather than aerated soft drinks, caffeine, and alcoholic beverages as they contain sugar and other preservatives which act as diuretics and can cause loss of water from the body. You can add sabja (tulsi seeds) to drinks as it has a cooling effect on the body.
- Have curd: Curd is excellent as it increases friendly bacteria in the gut and improves digestion and boosts immunity.
- Include veggies in diet: Add veggies like cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, spinach, beet etc to add to the extra water in your diet.
- Small meals: avoid heavy meals at one time as it can cause acidity and affect digestion. Rather eat small meals to feel light and keep your system active.
- Don't forget raw mango: In the summer season, raw mango is a special fruit and is extremely good to prevent sunstrokes and weakness. Raw mango juice also known as aam panna can help balance electrolytes in the body. You can also have raw mango in any form like adding it in bhel, salads or making a dish out of it.
You can divide your day's meals as per regular timings like:
Breakfast: 2-3 fresh fruits (this can help to neutralize your stomach acids and make you feel light and active as they are natural sources of energy).
- Mid morning: a glass of buttermilk/ coconut water (to refresh you).
- Lunch: salads + 1-2 rotis + veggies + thin dals (you can add or subtract the rotis as per your appetite and requirement).
- Evening: fruit yoghurt/fruit smoothie (they are filling, nourishing and cooling).
- Dinner: stir fried veggies/ chilled soups + grilled chicken/ steamed fish/ low fat paneer/ tofu + jaljeera/ lemon juice (to keep your dinner light and help you wake up afresh).
Stick to the plan and stay cool this summer!
Are bananas really your ticket to weight loss?
Bananas are your friends, truly!
Bananas as against the age old myth can really help in your weight loss process. A medium sized banana has a number of healthy nutrients that can help you in losing weight. A 100gm banana has about 90 calories, 3 gm of fiber and 23 gm of carbohydrates. It is a filling and satiating snack and can really give you a good dose of nutrients in minimum calories. Coming to the reasons that make this fruit an ideal weight loss food option, here are a few reasons:
1. Boosts your body's metabolic rate while controlling your appetite
Unripe bananas contain a form of starch known as resistant starch that slows down the digestion process. It works by feeding the healthy bacteria in your gut, causing oxidation of the fat tissues and suppression of your hunger pangs. According to findings published in a study, if you replace 5% of your carbohydrate requirement with a food rich in resistant starch, it can result in about 30% of fat burning post your meal.
2. Rids you of your bloating complaints
Since this fruit contains a good amount of potassium, it can help in diminishing water retention, thereby reducing the instances of belly bloat.
3. Forms the bulk of your fiber intake
Being a good source of fiber, having bananas every day can help in improving your digestion and subsequently aid in weight loss. Since fiber can't be digested by the body, it helps you to meet the bulk of your food requirements, which makes you fell fuller for a longer time and reduces your chances of overeating.
4. Is a fuel for your body
Bananas are considered to be the best source of energy before and after a workout. They provide your body with all the nutrients it requires. They are rich in easily digestible natural sugar that provides your body with optimal energy. They are also a rich source of potassium, making them perfect for warding off dizziness and muscle cramps that sometimes accompany a post-workout. Starting your day with a banana can reduce your sweet cravings in the later half of the day.
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Related Tip: 3 Amazing Ways To Melt Belly Fat with Bananas?
Here are top 6 foods to combat it and give complete nourishment for lustrous hair.
1) Eggs: Hair is pure proteins made up of keratin. Hence to maintain good hair health and growth, proteins are one of the most essential nutrients. Besides proteins, eggs also contain iron, vitamin B12, zinc, sulphur, vitamin A which are also crucial for good hair growth. They also contain biotin which helps fight hair loss problem.
2) Fish: Known for its high protein and omega 3 fatty acids can helps in a great way to allow hair growth. Omega 3 fatty acids found in this fish are the true super stars as they are found in cell membranes of your scalp and in the natural oils which keep your scalp healthy and hair hydrated. Since they cannot be produced in the body, they need to be obtained by food.
3) Walnuts: Apart from good amount of omega 3 fatty acids, walnuts also contain vitamin E which protects the cells in the scalp from damage by toxins thereby reducing hair fall and helping the cells to support healthy hair growth. Walnuts also contain copper which allow the hair to maintain its natural color and luster.
4) Carrots: They are rich in vitamin A which is necessary to maintain the integrity and health of the scalp cells and also act as an antioxidant to prevent hair damage. Deficiency of vitamin A can cause hair loss and thinning. Hence it makes good sense to add vitamin a rich foods to the diet to help your tresses grow beautifully.
5) Sunflower seeds: They are a great combination of hair promoting nutrients like omega 3 fatty acids, iron, zinc, selenium, vitamin E which not only prevent hair fall but stimulate the hair cells to grow new and healthy hair by providing nourishment and protection from toxins.
6) Legumes: Apart from being loaded with protein, zinc, B- complex vitamins etc, legumes are also a great source of sulphur which is known as nature?s beauty mineral. Sulphur is found abundantly in hair cells, it helps to circulate blood well and also metabolize some B vitamins helping the hair cells to produce string healthy hair.
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