Festivity is in the air and you can almost taste it. Before you let loose and indulge, you might want to cling to these quick tips that'll save you from landing in an unhealthy muddle.
First things first - the science behind the Navratri fasts.These occur twice a year, every time during change of season, from winter to summer and second time when the chill starts to set in. During these periods, our immunity is low and we are often advised to take a light and nutritious meal. Therefore, we abstain from meat, alcohol, grains, normal salt, all of which are harder to digest. It enables us to indulge in the practice of cleansing and purifying one's bod or simply de-toxing as they say these days.
You don't want to be binging on those heavy calorie delights and having to face the weighing scale tipping to the wrong side. This Navratri we suggest you tread the healthy way. Slap your hand off that plate of pakodas and devote yourself to these -
• The miracle liquid, water and sure, it is. It is advisable to have as much of it as possible. Maybe more than what your intake would be on non-fasting days. Also. drink a lot of fluids like milk and fresh juices. These help you cleanse your toxins and maintain an optimum fluidity flow.
• Fasting could prove to be tedious especially for your stomach. Long gaps between meals and very few options to eat could lead to acidity and your metabolism goes astray. Store your tuck in the form of roasted makhanas or dry fruits for your mid-meal snacks.
• Sabudana is a pure source of carbohydrates and gives a quick boost of the much-needed energy during fasts. We wouldn't ask you to ditch these lovely pearls but rather opt for a healthier sabudana khichdee or kheer.
• Onion and garlic are avoided during Navratri fasts as these are known to generate a lot of heat in the body. On the other hand, curd helps to cool you down and make you feel fresh. So dote on a bowl of yogurt and bung in your favourites to make it more filling.
• Rock salt or sendha namak. used during these fasts. is a pure form of salt that is not chemically processed. It is rich in potassium and very helpful in digestion, relieving gas and soothing heart burns.
• Eating fruit chaats/salads can actually help you curb your cravings. Fruits contain healthy sugar fructose that charges up your metabolism. So, pump up your fruit intake.
• Most importantly, do not starve yourself. you really don't have to give up on your favourites. The key is to create a balance. Do not deprive yourself of the nutrition that you need.
• We know it's hard to resist those crispy fried delights, but maybe you can switch to techniques like steaming, grilling or baking and taper off your guilt trips.
• Experiment and enjoy. Marry different flavors and textures, which give you your health's worth. Tease your palates and make your platter exciting with chironji ki dal, arbi kadhi or some pumpkin halwa.
• Paneer: Like it or not, you cannot ignore it. It is light, easy to digest and a great source of calcium.