New Year's which means partying, eating, bingeing and letting go of all things that spell routine or discipline in our lives. So important to have fun and let your hair down every once in a while! But now that you are back on terra firma let's get the body back to normal once again. Detox is the word I would like to avoid, because our body has a natural detox system which works wonderfully, what we need post a vacation is to gently nudge our body back to a healthy routine.
Do not kick yourselves back to an extreme plan. Holidays are meant to let go! Just because you ate sooo much till yesterday doesn't mean you eat zero calories from today, it will only make you feel worse. Your body needs fuel daily to keep functioning normally, so ease back to your normal eating pattern gradually. What your body needs is a little rest from the tons of sugary foods and huge portions you have been consuming. Even if you are looking at starting a strict Detox a few days from now, or planning to go on a rigorous exercise and eating schedule soon here are 8 tips that will help you make the transition smoothly.
1. Get fresh
Nothing like fresh food cooked with fresh ingredients. Start the New Year by getting rid of left overs. Ditch the processed foods and ready to eat meals, by doing so you will exclude excessive salt and sugar from your day. Use fresh vegetables to make a simple subzi for your meal or make a simple vegetable sandwich with a multi grain bread and tomatoes. Vegetables add revitalizing fibre, minerals, and vitamins to our food. The antioxidants present also work to relax the system. Eat fresh oranges ad apples and all the other wonderful seasonal fruits for their anti-oxidants, phyto nutrients and rehydrating properties. Fruits are a healthier "sweet". Avoid juices, they cause a bloat.
Nothing like fresh food cooked with fresh ingredients2. Protein first
Make sure you take adequate proteins to steady your blood sugars. Bingeing usually takes us towards carbs and sugary treats, leading to blood sugars going up and down fast, making us eat more. Adding simple proteins to your meals helps slow down digestion and maintain a more steady sugar level. Choose light egg preparations, yellow dals, paneer, fresh cheese and lean meats and low fat yogurt to enhance satiety of your meals and avoid the yo yo effect on blood sugars.
Make sure you take adequate proteins to steady your blood sugars
3. Choose the carbs that add fibre
Whole grains like wheat, oats, barley, corn fill you up faster. Party time usually involves lots of refined cereals from cakes, bagels, pasta and refined breads, all these are low in nutrients and tend to hold on to water after digestion causing bloating . High fibre cereals add fibre that act as a prebiotic and aid in improved digestion and prevent water retention.
Whole grains like wheat, oats, barley, corn fill you up faster
The good bacteria present in our gut breaks down food, improving digestion and preventing bloating. While today we have a lot of probiotic fortified foods available in the form of tea, coffee and drinks, the natural ones are the most effective. So drink up that lassi or have big bowls of dahi. Even better get the kanji ready as it's in season and gives you both pro and pre biotics.
The good bacteria present in our gut breaks down food
5. Time Bound
Eating at all hours of the day and night is a way we live during vacations and party times. It messes with our body's circadian rhythm truly. So get back to the 5 or 6 meal pattern you followed diligently and try to finish your dinner by 8.30 or 9 pm at the latest. When you eat at the same time daily it helps the body regulate our metabolic systems to work more efficiently, relaxing and rejuvenating the system.
Eating at all hours of the day and night is a way we live during vacations and party times
Oh yes, we come back to this no matter where we start from. It is a wonderful elixir of life force. All that alcohol and delicious high sodium snacks and foods you ate up dehydrate the body. Drinking water will help rehydrate and flush out the extra salt from the body naturally. Have at least 35ml/kg body weight so a 55 kg person needs about 2 liters. Also, tea, coffee, carbonated drinks are not a replacement for water.
Drinking water will help rehydrate and flush out the extra salt from the body naturally
7. Sleep and sleep, rest your body and mind
Lack of sleep causes an increase in the levels of hunger hormone Ghrelin, so get good 8 hours of shuteye to help your body recover. There is nothing more "detoxing" than a good night's sleep to get you back on track
There is nothing more "detoxing" than a good night's sleep
8. Move your body
No, you do not need to hit the gym with full force, I would suggest you take it easy to start with. A 30 minute brisk walk, a good 10- 15 minute workout which involves moving all your muscles, pranayama or a few rounds of surya namaskar is good enough to prepare to build up your exercise regimen. Exercise helps relax the body, it reduces the stress hormones like adrenalin and cortisol and increases endorphins the mood elevators. So physical activity helps both the mind and body to reboot to a healthier level.
A 30 minute brisk walk, a good 10- 15 minute workout will help
So eat normally and let your body settle into a healthy rhythm gently. Start the new year with happy thoughts, no stress and peace.
Wishing you all a very HAPPY and HEALTHY NEW YEAR.
December brings with it lots of holidays for Christmas and