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Top Health Tips on Managing Blood Sugar

Watch What Happens When You Drink Water Along With Your Food. It'll Leave You Thinking!

B.Sc. - Dietitics / Nutrition, CAFE, MMM, M.Sc - Dietitics / Nutrition, Nutrition Certification, PGCDE, PhD
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Kolkata
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Sit at the dinner table, and you'd find yourself invariably extending your hand to the glass of water on the side of your plate. While you may think it's absolutely necessary to have a glass of water during your meals, the truth is this habit of yours might be damaging your health. Read on to find out how.

1. It dilutes your gastric juices -
When the digestive acids (acids responsible for the digestion and breakdown of food as well as for killing infectious agents ingested with food) present in your stomach are diluted with water, they bring about a slowdown in the functioning of your entire digestive system. This slowdown results in food remaining lodged in your stomach for a longer period than normal, thereby causing indigestion.

Additionally, the reaction caused by the dilution of water and stomach acids can give rise to cramps in your tummy.

2. It reduces the saliva in your mouth -
The same thing that happens to the acids in your stomach, happens to your saliva as well. Water dilutes the saliva, which stops the breakdown of food in your mouth. Also, your saliva is responsible for stimulating your stomach to release digestive enzymes and prepare itself for the process of digestion. By drinking water with your meals, such signals sent by your saliva to your stomach become much weaker. All these together can make digestion very difficult.

3. It causes acidity -
Studies show that drinking water with your meals not only leads to the dilution of digestive enzymes, but also brings about a reduction in the secretion of digestive enzymes. This causes the undigested food in your stomach to leak into the lower part of your oesophagus (food pipe), causing acidity and heart burn.

4. It increases insulin production -
Sipping on water in the middle of lunch (or any other meal for that matter) causes a spike in your insulin levels just as glycaemic foods (foods with high starch or sugar content such as honey, potatoes, white bread, rice to name a few) would. When your body is unable to digest food properly, it usually tends to convert the glucose filled part of that food into fat and stores it, reason why your blood sugar levels see an upsurge.

5. It adds to your weight -
Since drinking water causes an increase in insulin levels in your body (as the food you eat is converted to fat), it can result in the piling of extra weight on your body. This is because a weak digestive system is one of the major causes behind obesity.

Try having your meals with less salt and drink water 30 minutes before each meal to control your thirst when you're eating. This can help you in controlling the negative effects that drinking water with your meals can have on your health.

Make a wise choice and stay healthy. Feel free to ask me more questions you might have.
16352 people found this helpful

Fox Nuts (Makhana) - 12 Reasons Why You Should Eat Them!

Masters in Nutritional Therapy, Lifestyle & Weight Management, Sport Nutritions, graduation in Nutrition & Dietics
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Delhi
Fox Nuts (Makhana) - 12 Reasons Why You Should Eat Them!
When we think of a light evening snack, we often think of a packet of fried chips or Kurkure. However, it is time to think of something healthier, as we are already aware of the ill effects of these snacks all around us. This is where snacks like fox nuts are gaining popularity. Grown in the wetlands of Asian countries, they are also known as phool makhana (because of their flowery appearance) and lotus seeds.

They are a great snack and have multiple benefits. Read on to know about this wonderful, economical, tasty, and healthy dish.

They are low in calories, fat, and sodium. They are therefore the perfect in-between-meal snack. They also make you feel full, so further cravings for binge eating are reduced
Their low sodium and high potassium and magnesium content makes them very useful for people with high blood pressure
The high calcium content is good for bone and teeth health
Their sugar content is low, and so are highly useful for diabetics, who have the urge to eat at short intervals
The fox nuts have astringent properties and are useful for kidney ailments
People looking for weight loss should try makhana, as they are very low in calories but can fill the stomach. This helps control hunger pangs and intake of high-calorie foods
It is rich in fiber and so can be used in weight loss as well as for digestion problems like constipation
Fox nuts are rich in antioxidants and therefore useful in fighting ageing and chronic inflammation and stress in the body
In both men and women, makhana is believed to improve fertility rates. The sperm quality and quantity is believed to improve when makhana is consumed
Given its multiple benefits, especially calcium and iron, pregnant women are given makhana. It also helps prevent hypertension and diabetes in the pregnant mother
Fox nuts are believed to help get rid of insomnia
If addiction to coffee is your problem, try some fox nuts to get rid of the addiction
Methods of use:

The seeds are actually tasteless and so whether it is salt or sweet, they take on the added taste
Roast the seeds with a little ghee on a light flame. Sprinkle salt, and the yummy snack is good to go
Other spices like cinnamon or oregano can be added to suit one s taste
They can also be used in sweet dishes like kheer and other desserts
If you are looking for a super snack that is highly healthy, economical, and has little hazards on your health, grab a bowl of fox nuts.
15159 people found this helpful

Jeera Water - 8 Reasons Why You Must Drink It!

MD - Ayurveda
Ayurveda, Kanpur
Jeera Water - 8 Reasons Why You Must Drink It!
Jeera or cumin can do more than add flavour to your food. For your health to benefit from jeera, boil a spoon of raw jeera with a cup of water and strain it. This tea can help resolve a number of health issues, skin and hair problems. This should ideally be taken on an empty stomach in the morning. Some of the health benefits of jeera water are:

It aids digestion: A glass of jeera water in the morning can stimulate the production of enzymes that help break down carbohydrates, glucose and fats. It also enhances your metabolism and prevents diarrhoea, nausea and gaseousness among other indigestion problems.
It helps remove toxins: Jeera water is rich in antioxidants that can help flush toxins from the body and promote the healthy functioning of internal organs. This is especially beneficial for the liver.
It boosts immunity: Jeera is rich in iron, which helps the immune system function optimally. A glass of jeera water can account for up to 7% of the recommended daily iron intake. Vitamins A and C, which help protect the body against infections, are also found in jeera water.
It helps treat anaemia: The high levels of iron in jeera make it ideal for treating anaemic patients. Without adequate iron, the body will not be able to produce enough red blood cells and hence hamper circulation of oxygen-rich blood.
It improves the respiratory system: Jeera has anti-congestive properties. Hence, drinking a glass of jeera water can help dilute and discharge mucus in the chest. Its antiseptic properties also help kill microbes that cause colds and coughs.
It improves the quality of your sleep: Jeera water can help cure insomnia to a large degree. Not only does it help you fall asleep faster, it can also ensure you have a better quality of sleep.
It improves memory: Jeera can help enhance ones brainpower. This helps sharpen your memory and increases your attention span.
It helps achieve clear skin: Jeera is full of fibre and free radical scavengers. This helps detoxify the body and helps make their elimination smoother. By fighting free radicals, jeera water helps keep the skin clear and adds a natural glow. This also makes jeera an effective way of treating acne. Jeera also has antioxidant properties that help prevent premature aging. Additionally, jeera water can soothe the skin and increase the skin s ability to absorb nutrients from food.
14048 people found this helpful

Figs (Anjeer) - 9 Health Benefits of This Super Fruit!

Diploma in Diet and Nutrition, Diploma in Naturopathy & Yogic Science (DNYS), MBA in Hospital management , Diabetes Educator, Certified insulin pump trainer
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Delhi
Figs (Anjeer) - 9 Health Benefits of This Super Fruit!
Dry fruits undoubtedly are great energy foods that are loaded with vital nutrients like minerals and vitamins. Anjeer or fig is one of the most popularly used dry fruit, and has multiple benefits. So, it's essential to include this fruit in your diet. Anjeer or fig can be consumed in multiple ways.

First is, by sun drying it and having it raw. You can even store this dried fig throughout the year. People across the country love the milk shake of Kaju Anjeer. For which, you need to soak some figs and add them along with cashews to the milk. Alternatively, you can even roughly cut them and add to your salads. The most delicious way to have figs is by adding them in your desserts. You can also make sweets like barfi and peda (milk sweet) with this healthy ingredient.

Here are 9 health benefits of this super fruit:

Controls blood pressure and ageing: Figs are rich in potassium, which negates the effect of sodium and helps in controlling blood pressure. They can also help in controlling ageing effects by providing you enough iron, estrogen, etc. This keeps your hormones in check and boosts your energy as well. Figs are also great for skin and hair and nails. Mashed figs applied on the face can prevent acne.
Helps in weight management: Moderate amount of figs can help in controlling weight. They are rich in fiber, and therefore eating figs is a good way to keep junk and fried foods at bay. When in the mood for a light snack, pick figs and they will make you feel full, at the same time, but in a healthy way.
Heart healthy food: Figs reduce the amount of triglycerides in the blood. Triglycerides are the culprit for inducing heart disease as they are fat particles which accumulate along the blood vessel and cause heart attacks.
Reduces chances of cancer: Figs are rich in antioxidants and therefore help in controlling release of free radicals and chronic inflammation. The free radicals are the ones responsible for chronic inflammation including cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. Figs are therefore believed to have a preventive effect on these chronic health conditions.
Controls blood sugar: The chlorogenic acid present in figs helps in reducing blood sugar levels in diabetics. Potassium which is found in abundance in figs also plays a good role in control of blood sugar levels.
Improves bone health: Calcium is the main ingredient required for healthy bones, and figs are a good natural source for this. While dairy products are a good source, they are not alone sufficient, and figs can be a good second-line supplement.
Aids in constipation: Being rich in fiber, figs are good for intestinal motility and can prevent constipation. The fiber provides roughage, aiding in good bowel movements
Keeps the reproductive system in check: Figs are rich in minerals like magnesium, zinc, and manganese which contribute to vitality and fertility. Figs can be soaked in milk and consumed or eaten in other forms as mentioned above. So, if you're pregnant or planning a baby, do include this super food in your diet.
Prevent kidney stones: Boil some figs in water and once cool, this water can be consumed for a few days to prevent kidney stones.
11300 people found this helpful

Loose Motion: 4 Natural Ways to Cure it!

MBBS, AFIH, PGDMLS, MD-HRM, MD-HM
General Physician, Gurgaon
Loose Motion: 4 Natural Ways to Cure it!
Loose motion, commonly known as diarrhea refers to a state where the affected person suffers from frequent passage of loose, watery or unformed stool. It may lead to exhaustion and dehydration as with frequent passage of stool the body loses water and essential minerals. Here are some natural remedies which are capable of relieving you from loose motion effectively.

1. Lemon

Lemon juice has anti-inflammatory properties that assist in cleansing of the stomach. After extraction of the lemon juice it should be mixed with a tablespoon of sugar and salt. This solution should be consumed every one hour until you feel that all the toxins from your bowels have been flushed out.

2. Fenugreek seeds

Fenugreek or methi seeds have antibacterial and antifungal properties. You need to mix one to two tablespoon powder of dried up fenugreek seeds in a glass of water and have it in an empty stomach in the morning for three to four days. It may taste bitter might but it's bound to completely relieve you from loose motion.

3. Buttermilk

Butter milk not only works wonders for soothing your stomach but also assists the process of digestion. The acid content in buttermilk fights the bacteria and germs in your digestive system. Adding a pinch of turmeric powder or cumin powder or black pepper powder to your buttermilk increases its efficiency to cure loose motion.

4. Adequate rest

If you are suffering from several bouts of loose motion it is bound to cause weakness and dehydration as the body is drained of essential minerals and water. It is advisable that you take complete best rest for two to three days to recover from this fatigue completely. Using heat bags on your stomach can relieve you of cramps and pains. During this period you should abstain from rich and oily foods.
11159 people found this helpful

Flax Seeds (Alsi) - 6 Health Benefits You Never Knew!

MD - Ayurveda, CIY, Guru Shishya parampara, BAMS
Ayurveda, Gurgaon
Flax Seeds (Alsi) - 6 Health Benefits You Never Knew!
Flax seeds are one of the world s oldest super foods. They can improve your skin and hair health, keep your heart healthy, fight cancer, lower cholesterol and help you lose weight. Yet, they hardly look impressive. Small and brown with no smell, nobody can guess that they are such reservoirs of nutrients invaluable for our health and well-being.

Nutrient profile

Flax seeds are the richest sources of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids in the world!
They are the number one source of lignans in our diets.
They are also storehouses of minerals like manganese, magnesium as well as fibre, protein and vitamin B1.
Health benefits of flax seeds

Heart healthy: Omega-3 essential fatty acids are known as 'good' fats that have been shown to have a number of heart healthy effects. Flax seeds can naturally reduce cholesterol levels. This happens because the high fibre content in flax traps cholesterol in the digestive tract so it doesn t get absorbed. They also prevent hardening of arteries due to deposition of plaque and treat heart arrhythmias.
Super digestive aids: Fibre in flax seeds helps delay the passage of food through the GI tract. This increases nutrient absorption in the small intestine. Fibre also supports colon detoxification, fat loss and reduces sugar cravings.
Natural hormones: Lignans are very important plant hormones as well as antioxidants. The lignans in flax have estrogenic properties. After menopause, estrogen levels in women drop to abysmal levels. Use of flax seeds can shore up estrogen levels and provide protection for bones, heart and other organs. These provide benefits like anti-ageing, hormone balancing and health of body cells. Studies also show that flax can reduce hot flashes experienced during menopause by half. Lignans are also known for their anti-viral and antibacterial properties,
Flaxseeds are Gluten-free: Most grains we consume are gluten rich like wheat. Flax, on the other hand, is low in gluten. This means that flax is anti- inflammatory and reduces inflammation in any part of our bodies. People suffering from celiac disease and auto-immune diseases can thus include flax in their diet without a problem.
Most Magnesium-rich food in the world: Magnesium helps in keeping our muscles healthy and its deficiency is the biggest reason for sore muscles, fatigue and cramps.
Cancer fighter extraordinaire: In animal studies, the plant Omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, called ALA, has been shown to inhibit tumour incidence and growth.
Flax seeds is also very effective against breast cancer. Flaxseed is by no means a magic bullet against every disease known to man, but it comes close to being one. If you are thinking of reaping its benefits, use flax seeds as much possible and add them in your curries, soups, smoothies or just roast and eat to experience the flax miracle.
10712 people found this helpful

Symptoms and Complications of Diabetes

Multi Speciality Clinic
Multi Speciality, Pune
Symptoms and Complications of Diabetes
Diabetes refers to the condition when there is an excess of glucose in your body. Though glucose is beneficial for the proper functioning of the body, an excess can lead to serious consequences. Over the years, diabetes has over the years emerged as one of the fatal diseases, one that once developed has no known cure. This condition is preceded by various perceptible symptoms, some of them are-

1. Insatiable thirst

The onset of diabetes is almost always accompanied by a nagging thirst, one that refuses to be quenched despite drinking plenty of water.

2. Frequent tendencies of urination

A frequent tendency of urination is one of the primary precursors of diabetes.

3. Acute hunger

Having bouts of acute hunger is one of the most predominant premonitions of diabetes.

4. Exhaustion and fatigue

In case you are suffering from diabetes, you will inevitably feel tired and exhausted all the time.

5. Blurring of vision

Diabetes is one of those rare conditions that threaten to affect and damage the eyesight. The blurring of vision comes hand in hand with the onset of diabetes.

6. Sores which take a long time to heal

One of the most fatal symptoms of diabetes is when the sore that you have suffered from takes a longer time than necessary to heal.

Some of the complications which diabetes invite are-

1. Cardiovascular problems

Diabetes considerably increases the risk of a host of cardiovascular problems and ailments like heart attacks, chest pain, and stroke.

2. Damage to the kidneys

The pair of kidneys that human beings are endowed with has the responsibility to remove the toxins from the body. An excess of diabetes in the body unsettles the purging ability of the kidneys.

3. Damage to the eyes

The onset of diabetes, among other things, puts your eyes at great risks. The condition tends to damage the blood vessels of the retina and can even cause blindness in some.

4. Skin disorder

Diabetes puts your skin at great risks. You may suffer from various bacterial and fungal infections among other ailments, due to an excess of glucose in your body.
10355 people found this helpful

Alcohol Vs Soft Drinks - Which Is More Harmful?

MBBS
Sexologist, Jammu
Alcohol Vs Soft Drinks - Which Is More Harmful?
There are many kinds of food items that can do us a world of good. But there are certain man made food items that are synthetic in nature, and have more demerits than merits when it comes to our health. There is a long standing debate on the merits of various beverages, including soft drinks and alcohol.

Which one is the healthier choice?

To begin with, we cannot avoid a good beverage during social interactions, so we would do well to make a healthier choice. Here are the details about the healthier choice between alcohol and soft drinks.

Kilo calories: It is a well-known fact that both alcohol and soft drinks have plenty of kilo calories with one cola containing over 1000 kilojoules as they are known. Yet, as per this parameter, it would be a healthier choice if you were to choose soft drinks because even though they both have the same amount of calories, one tends to drink soft drinks at a slower pace, which means that you consume less of it. Once you start enjoying an alcoholic drink, you tend to take more of them and much faster. Also, alcohol makes you hungry, which implies that you start reaching out for various kinds of snacks and other unhealthy food. In such cases, you will tend to gain weight much faster if you choose alcohol every time. This will not really be the case when you choose soft drinks.
Toxins: The way alcohol is brewed ensures that it carries a whole lot of toxins, which are not good for your liver and heart in the long run. These toxins can easily clog your arteries and create complications for the functioning of the liver as well.
Glycemic index: This is the count that is accorded to the level of insulin resistance in one s drink of choice. For alcohol, the glycemic resistance is much higher, which means that you have better insulin resistance as compared to other soft drinks, which are high in sugar content. Therefore, it makes alcohol a highly unhealthy choice, which can also result in diabetes in the long run, if one ingests too much of it.
Nutrition: From the nutrition point of view, cola and other soft drinks have absolutely no nutritional value because processed sugar is one of the main components. This will give rise to the toxin influx in the body and bring down the insulin resistance, which makes you susceptible to diseases like diabetes. Therefore, it would be healthier to have a beer rather than a cola because it has a small amount of protein due to the ingredients used when it is brewed for consumption. It also has some amount of antioxidants and potassium.
10328 people found this helpful

Onions - 9 Reasons You Must Consume Them!

BAMS, MD, Panchakrma
Ayurveda, Nashik
Onions - 9 Reasons You Must Consume Them!
Onions are a part of the Allium group of vegetables and herbs, which additionally include chives, garlic, scallions and leeks. Allium vegetables have been known for a long time for their specialty of sharp flavours as well as for their curing and healing properties. Onions are a thick and layered vegetable and while they are low in calories, they are highly advantageous when it comes to a steady supply of vitamins, nutrients, minerals and cancer prevention agents. Here is how consuming onions can be very beneficial for your health:

Organosulfer compounds: Allium vegetables have broadly been known as cancer prevention agents, particularly stomach and colorectal tumours. They have beneficial and healing impacts are likely due to a limited amount of organosulfur compounds present in them as compared to other vegetables.
Folate: Folate, found in onions, may help with depression by keeping an overabundance of homocysteine from shaping in the body, which can keep blood and different nutrients from reaching the brain. Abundance of homocysteine hinders the growth of serotonin, which is the happiness hormone.
Vitamin C: Adequate intake of vitamin C is required for the building and support of collagen, which gives a sheen and volume to the skin and hair, respectively. Onions have abundance of vitamin C.
Other Vitamins: Onion contains common sugar, vitamins A, B6, C, E and minerals, for example, sodium, potassium, press and dietary fibre. More importantly, onions contain folic acid, which is very important for a woman s health especially for pregnant women.
Prebiotics: Prebiotics are not generally recommended in heavy doses, however, they sustain the good bacteria in your body. These valuable bacteria then help with the processing and digestion of your food. They help the immune system to a great extent. One such prebiotic is inulin, a water-dissolvable type of dietary fibre that is found in onions. It helps in preventing ulcers.
Sulfur: Sulfur helps in bringing down cholesterol and triglycerides. The allium and allyl disulphide in onions have likewise been said to get rid of vein stiffness by discharging nitric oxide. This may reduce the racing heartbeat, get rid of blood clots and decline the danger of heart diseases, vascular diseases and strokes.
Quercetin: Quercetin in onions is additionally helpful. It offers both cancer prevention agents and mitigating properties that may help the heart.
Cardio-vascular diseases: Onions are shockingly high in gainful polyphenols. These play a critical part in averting and decreasing the movement of diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases.
Regular antihistamin: Quercetin helps in cell reinforcement. It has calming properties that may help fight the painful symptoms of chronic diseases like coronary illness and cancer. Quercetin has been successful in preventing histamine discharge (histamines are the chemicals that cause allergic reactions).
Therefore, onions should be consumed regularly in either a raw form or in your daily vegetables. They not only are easy to consume and digest, but also give you life-long health benefits.
10213 people found this helpful

Honey (Shahad) - Strange Health Benefits You Never Thought Of!

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Ayurveda, Delhi
Honey (Shahad) - Strange Health Benefits You Never Thought Of!
Licking rich and thick honey from the spoon is indeed blissful and heavenly. But did you know that there are numerous health benefits of consuming this golden delight? So, if you like honey, don't think twice and make a bold move to replace the sugar with honey owing to the benefits it comes with. Not only it is natural to form of sugar, also because it can do wonder to your daily diet. Let us look at some of the benefits:

For starters, honey can be stored for months without getting spoilt and you never need to worry about its shelf life. Here are the top unusual health benefits of honey:

Alleviate allergy symptoms: Do you suffer from a running nose and itchy eyes when the allergy season hits? Honey s natural anti-inflammatory agents produce antibodies that will build up a great defense against allergy over time.
Boosts your energy: Consume honey early in the morning and experience a great way to start off your day with full energy. The glucose present in the honey gives you a quick boost to get you moving up and about.
Good for memory: Honey contains antioxidants as well, which can help to promote great brain function. It also helps the brain to absorb calcium, which improves the memory function as well.
Suppresses cough: Honey is a great cough remedy that is power-packed with great health benefits. It soothes the throat, by calming down the nerve endings that protect the throat. So the next time you have a fussy cough, try honey instead of over-the-counter cough syrups that can be harsh on your immune system.
Sleep well: Having sleep problems? Honey induces serotonin neurotransmitter that helps your body to sleep. Wind down with a teaspoon of honey, add it to your drink like warm tea and calm down your body to get into the sleep mode.
Helps with dandruff: Have an itchy scalp with excessive dandruff? Apply a diluted solution of honey to your scalp, leave it on for few hours and your scalp will feel healthy in no time. The anti-fungal properties available in honey will alleviate dandruff issues and also act as a great moisturizer for the hair.
Treats wounds and burns: A wonderful first aid for wounds, scrapes or burns, honey s antibiotic nature helps to fight off further infection. One type of honey called Manuka honey is well-known as a great treatment for wounds and burns.
Hangovers: Waking up with a hangover is one of the worst feelings, isn t it? Honey helps your liver speed up the removal of toxins from your body. So all the toxins that you have consumed with alcohol, will be flushed out with the help of honey.
Prevent cancer: Honey has carcinogen preventing properties that can help to fight cancer. It is a superfood that has anti-metastatic properties to prevent tumors and cancers.
Boosts the immune system: Regular consumption of honey that has antibacterial and antioxidant agents will cleanse your body and improve better immunity.
9850 people found this helpful