(White) Butter makes life Better

How can we think of Janmashtami and not think of butter – the food that Lord Krishna loved so much that he wouldn’t even mind stealing and eating.

But today we cannot think of eating butter – because we only associate it to being fattening. But – was Lord Krishna fat?

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We always picture Krishna as young, full of love, energy and enthusiasm; sharp, smart, intelligent and agile – being very quick in his movements – remember how he would steal butter? 😉

Butter though high in calories (for the calorie-counters), not only does it enhance the taste of the food its added too, it is even better in its nutritive goodness and makes life much better for you.

  • It is rich in anti-ageing Vitamin A and enzymes. Being the ‘fat’- it helps our body retain calcium, phosphorous and vitamin A and D.
  • Contrary to belief, white butter actually helps you LOSE WEIGHT! It helps in proper assimilation and metabolism of cholesterol and other fat constituents. Thereby breaking down and utilizing fats more efficiently. The result is – Fat Loss!
  • Have you ever stopped to wonder why your dadi or nani would give you khichdi with ghee or makhan when you were down with a cold and flu? White butter boosts and strengthens your immune system and in fact sometimes helps treat minor stomach infections too.
  • The molecular structure of butter helps it pass through the layers of the brain tissue that are otherwise impermeable. It helps the transportation of nutrients to the brain and takes away wastes from it making the brain function optimally – thereby making you smarter and sharper, just like Krishna.
  • The Vitamin E and Selenium (the antioxidant) in it makes your skin smooth and glowing.
  • If you find yourself complaining of weak or painful joints – think of White butter. It helps lubricate joints and improves movement.
  • Haven’t you heard people say – Fat adds Flavor – butter while making food yummy, also makes you feel satisfied. Isn’t daal-chawal or khichdi or even hot rotis with ghee so soul-satisfying?

A very important thing here is – you must NOT use makhan or ghee that is sold outside, instead make it at home. And like with any food – moderation and eating sensibly are key to Fitness and Wellbeing.

Happy Janmashtami!

The “Appearance Attraction”

Recently I met a few people – and as always they are obsessed about dropping ‘x’ kilos by such and such date to fit into ‘that’ dress or just appear a certain way. And to achieve their targets – they don’t really care about the approach – they could starve, skip meals, count calories, workout like crazies, anything but eating sensibly – they just want results! So I asked – would you put your child or someone you love on the same diet – I got a unanimous reply – NO WAY! Then why put yourself through it!?

What I don’t understand is that why is there so much attention on a certain number or appearance and at the same time so much disregard towards physiological and psychological parameters? Why do we forget that our body works as a whole unit – and anything we do or don’t impacts US – our body, mind and energy too at the same time.

An absolute focus only on Weight loss, with an indifferent or unaware approach to Fat loss – is simply Careless and even dangerous. How can we overlook the benefits that exercise and eating right have upon US – our body, mind and energy. The overall insulin sensitivity improves, fat burning is maximized. Strength-stamina-endurance gets better. We are better attuned to our Hunger cues and satiety signals. Heart, liver, kidney function better. We are more happier. We feel lighter. We look better (isn’t this the whole reason why most people want to ‘lose weight’?!) 😉

So I repeat myself – throw your scale – focus on living a disciplined life – be FIT. A good lifestyle ensures that you are not at risk of any lifestyle related disease – which are on high rise today. Get over the “Appearance Attraction” and get Sensible 🙂

Fitness

Mindfulness Matters

Eating is life’s most vital activity, apart from breathing and sleeping (in the same order as well, I think 😉 ). We cannot sustain ourselves without eating. Eating is a must!

Most of the times, we eat so unconsciously, without being aware of how important food is to us. We have forgotten its role when it comes to – our survival, our health and also the way we look. It gives us energy to work, it allows us to think, move, create and thrive.

Our food preferences and choices are based on convenience as compared to our health and well-being. We have become so busy that even eating has just become another task on our ‘to-do’ list. We don’t really have the time to nourish body and soul.

Coming back to my point – Mindfulness Matters – Why?

Mindfulness makes us aware. When we begin to pay attention to how everything we eat, influences our body, we start making smarter choices about what foods to eat.

When we give our complete attention to the meal in front of us, we feel satisfied quickly, we eat less and are able to better digest what we eat.

We live in a fast-paced multi-taking world – we never really slow down. Even when we are eating, we are multi-tasking. We are either watching TV, or are talking to someone on the phone or reading something.

DID YOU KNOW – that multi-tasking registers as stress in the mind and therefore triggers a stress response in the body?

Now extend this to when you are eating. When you are eating under stress or when you are upset, it impacts not only what you eat, but how you digest it too.

Yes, Stress Impacts your Digestion

When your mind registers stress, a series of changes start taking place in the body instantly:

  • Blood pressure rises
  • Digestion is suppressed
  • Immunity is suppressed
  • Detoxification is suppressed
  • Gradual demineralization of bone
  • Fatty acid metabolism is impaired
  • Glucose is released
  • Cholesterol is released
  • Hormones are imbalanced
  • Muscle break down along with fluid retention
  • Fat is deposited
  • Decreased energy
  • Mood fluctuations

So when the mind perceives stress – digesting your food is not really a priority. In fact your digestive system is put on hold, as there other important things for the body to deal with.

Now – because the digestive system is shut down – fewer digestive enzymes are released and obviously this leads to decreased breakdown of carbohydrates, fats, and protein.  Even the absorption of vitamins and minerals is impaired.

In fact, if you read the pointers above, during the stress response, the cells’ ability to metabolize fatty acids is also impaired. And, to top it off, the body tends to break down muscle and replace it with stored fat and excess fluid. Over time, this can cause weight gain. Still, wondering how you put on the weight!?

Also thanks to this – you experience digestive symptoms, such as acidity, heaviness, bloating, and sometimes unknown stomach discomfort. No matter how healthy or nutritionally balanced your food is, your body will not optimally absorb the nutrients from the meal, if the functioning of the digestive system is impaired

So, as you rush out the door in the morning, with a toast or a ‘snack bar’ in hand to catch your train, or eat lunch in front of a computer screen, or when you are super stressed about the day or are experiencing negative emotions tied to a certain someone or something, you are clearly telling your body “don’t digest.”

And so, Mindfulness Matters, being aware and paying attention while eating guarantees full digestion and maximum nutritional benefit. Try it Out – Results Guaranteed! 🙂 

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There is no need to DIE when DIE-Ting

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Most people DIE – when DIE-Ting. And obviously when it doesn’t work –  that kills you further, because you gave up so much and yet you are back to square one.

Also when you consistently Over – diet and eat less in the process – thinking you could knock some kilos off quickly, you actually end up landing in a bigger mess. Suddenly eating lesser than before, slows down metabolism and the body responds to this ‘starvation mode’ by holding the fat back and now the body burns calories more slowly.

Also haven’t you noticed how you feel when you starve? You feel hungry and as a result are irritable, cranky, angry and feel weak. You may weigh less on the scale but the minute you go back to eating like usual, all the weight piles back on and sometimes even more.

This yo-yo weight gain and loss is even more dangerous.

Instead, it is just so much easier to EAT small meals frequently, sensibly and the right amount of food you need in that moment instead of ‘dieting’. This way you actually nurture and nourish your body. In doing so you will notice that your energy levels are better, you feel fresh, fitter, look younger and your clothes fit better too.

Diwali Detox Diet – a Mania

As we go back to work, come back to our regular lives post the Diwali Dhamaka, so many are now looking to “DETOX”! The very popular ‘Diwali Detox Diet’, now has to be followed – we ‘sinned’ during Diwali, we ate mithais, we were up till late, so obviously now it’s time to punish ourselves – so bring out the yucky juices, boiled ill tasting food, and what not!

When I ask someone – who is dying to go on a Detox Diet – why do you want to Detox – I get a very standard reply – “Arre, I ate so much during Diwali – I now need to ‘make up’ for that and get back on track.” And to that I ask – so you think your body stores some ‘Special’ fat in some ‘Special’ parts – to let you know – that ‘Hey dude – this is your Diwali fat.’ Do you really believe a few days of eating – made you FAT? Did you suddenly go from being Skinny to Fat – thanks to Diwali? Exactly my point!

Yes, you ate more than you should, you indulged in mithais, you were up late – but did you not enjoy every minute of it? As you resume work now – do you torture yourself by adding extra hours at work or in any other way, because well you took a break – so time to punish yourself? No – you just went back to work. The same way, go back to eating sensibly, workout regularly, sleep on time and love yourself – including your body!

Be gentle with your mind and your body. Don’t create a belief for yourself that having fun has to be followed up with a punishment. Instead, teach yourself to live in Balance. Teach yourself to listen to what the body has to say, to listen to your Gut – your stomach. Your body is a miracle – it fixes every cut, every wound, when a tiny speck of dust gets into the eye, it is wise enough – to secrete tears so as to remove the speck. Even when you punish your body, torture it – in the name of weight loss – it is still here for you – doing the best it can and keeping you alive. Time you showed it some respect and TLC – it deserves.

I don’t understand – why celebrating a Festival – having fun with Family and loved ones has to be followed by a punishment? Why can we just not enjoy a festival, and move on with our lives – why go from one extreme to the other – bingeing and then starving – like now starve post Diwali and then go bingeing for Christmas and New Year and then make ‘Weight Loss’ as resolution AGAIN on 1st Jan.

Seriously!? Is this all there is to Life? We need to put an end to equating weight loss, of being a certain size to being Happy, worthy and successful and gaining weight as being the exact opposite. Being thinner does not ensure more happiness. Do you think – Cutting calories, climbing on the weighing scale each day, pinching and pulling your ‘fat’ body parts, and measuring self-worth this way – is Happy? I don’t think so!

If you really want to be happy – be committed to yourself. Start doing things that make you happy in a way that we feel connected to your inner self.

I am in no way advocating – remaining unhealthy or over weight. Eat sensibly, workout, drink lots of water, sleep well – get FIT. But don’t obsess over numbers – do what needs to be done – and focus on living your purpose, being Healthy, Fit & Happy – instead of being a certain size or weighing a certain number.

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Weight Watcher’s Words

The best part of my day is when I am with my patients – discussing their lives, insisting and ensuring that they are eating and obviously discussing – Food! With every person I interact, I also understand their mindset which often reflects in the way they talk about Life, Food, Nutrition & Diet. (For now I am sticking to the Food, Nutrition & Diet bit.)

Some of the very commonly-interestingly-annoying concepts I have come across include –

  • Khushboo, can you please help me, I want to go ‘ON’ a diet” – What do you mean by ‘on’ a diet? Is this an on-off switch? Sad, yet true, we believe we must go ‘on’ a diet and lose some weight, and once we reach our goal or target, slowly go ‘off’ it. Obviously after a ‘maintenance’ diet. Anyway, what happens once we go off the ‘diet’ – we slowly and steadily put all the weight back on and may be some more sometimes. Get frustrated and try something new again. And start another cycle. Shouldn’t the point of a diet program be to not gain the weight back? Exactly! So please get off your diet and start living a good balanced life – Eat right, Workout, Think Right, Rest – results have no choice but to follow.
  • “Cheating on the Diet” – this is another funda I just don’t get. Did you take some vows before you got on to the diet? Also by doing what you shouldn’t have done – exactly who or what did you cheat on? Who is the hurt-party in the bargain? Whose loss is it anyway? Did your Diet have heart-break or was it you, who felt sad and guilty thereafter? So time to get Real! You are human, you like to eat, and so you EAT. Yes, this sometimes includes fried, chocolates – or whatever your list of I-shouldn’t-have includes. Eating even these occasionally is good. You can’t be a sadhu, because if you are over-cautious with your diet, you will definitely rebel at some point. So it is best – to eat everything you like – just Sensibly and in moderation. Avoid the moralistic tag of being loyal or faithful to your diet or cheating on it.
  • “Willpower”– ‘By the sheer force of my will, I will follow the diet’ – doesn’t this mean the you are simply forcing yourself to do something, and pressuring yourself to do a particular, which you feel otherwise you cannot sustain? Because, there will come a time, when you will go back to the usual – and then you will blame yourself for not being strong enough, feel guilty, blah, blah, blah.

So to make life easy and more satisfying – Make life-enhancing Choices! Choose to Eat right because YOU want to. Choose to Work out because YOU want to NOT because you Have to. Whenever you choose something out of Love instead of compulsion or fear, the happiness on the inside shows and yes, the results are much better and long-lasting!

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Fix Your Focus

Focus on the #Change you need to make to get #healthy. Don’t be obsessed with the number on the #Scale. If you want to obsess, get obsessive about Getting Healthy and Fit for #Life. Make the desired Changes and Results will have to follow. #merakiwellbeing #TransformationTuesdays #khushboothakker  

 

Make Time for What is Important 

     It’s not about “having” time. It’s about making time. Make time for what is really important. A healthy life is a lot more fun 💖#merakiwellbeing