Navratri is here and as we all know it holds a lot of significance for us. During Navratri devotees fast for 9 days to seek blessings from goddess Durga. While people have their own way of fasting be it all 9 days or just a few days, be it eating only vegetarian food and just give up on alcohol. However, you choose to fast there are few basic items to include and avoid to make the best of your fasting period with health still as a priority.
Here we'll talk about 7 such food items you should AVOID in the name of fast-
1) Sabudana Vada
Sabudana Vada is the ultimate resort for many people during any fast. The vada being deep fried will be very high in calories. Sabudana is already high in starch so if you want to consume sabudana you can have it in the form on khichdi or sabudana tikkis which require less oil. A great option is to bake the fritters as well!
2) Fruit juices
Fruits are a big source of energy giving foods specially during fasts. If you think to switch to fruit juices, be it home-made or packaged it will do more harm than good. Fruit juices lack fibre and the nutritional content is reduced severely as compared to whole fruits. Packaged fruit juices in addition have a lot of added sugar.
3) Milk and milk products are a big hit during fasts. If nothing we always know a cup of warm milk comes to rescue. Few home-made smoothies or milk with nut powders works the best. However, a big no is to milk based sweets. Even if they are 'fast friendly' khoya sweets ultimately have excess sugars.
Nuts are great by themselves. Handful of them in the evening or morning gives you great satiety. People buy sugar coated nuts or salted nuts in the name of healthy. Excess sugar or salt is unnecessary even on days you fast.
5) Faradi snacks
Food market is full of new products each day. One of the sectors that's flourishing is the snack sector specially the packaged foods which are 'fast-friendly'. These foods are high in calories not just that we can't control the quality of ingredients used to make these products. Switch to home-made snacks. You can make baked sweet potato chips, roasted makhana, tikkis, millet snacks (amaranth laddos) etc instead of store-bought products.
6) Home-made sweets
Dry fruit laddos can be made instead of store bought. Store bought laddos or sweets as mentioned above will have excessive sugars while on the other hand dry fruit laddos can be made sugar free at home. You can use either a small portion of jaggery or you can also use natural sweetness from dates and coconut.
7) Only few millets are consumed during fasts. It is the best time to incorporate variety of millets which you wouldn't otherwise. Singhada for example is consumed in the form of puris (deep fried). A healthy alternative would be to make small roti's instead of puri.
To wrap up, if you are fasting for 9 days do not go gaga over fried foods and sweets. Consuming those foods guilt free because you are fasting isn't helpful at all. Your body needs even more care during the fasting days. A lot of healthy
About Author: Ms. Prachi Shah, Clinical Dietitian & Consulting Nutritionist, Founder, Health Habitat
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