One of the first things people do when they adopt a healthy lifestyle is let go of their favourite foods, which often consists of fried, processed and sweet items. It is widely believed that one must completely avoid unhealthy meals to remain fit, active and healthy. However, it cannot be farther from the truth.
Did you know that you can still enjoy your favourite foods and not compromise on your health in the process? Ayurvedic expert Dr Dixa Bhavsar, recently, took to Instagram to bust the myth that a healthy lifestyle is impossible while consuming all kinds of food, albeit once in a while.
“If you’re on weight management, hormone balancing or a simple detox diet and crave for your favourite foods at times (especially sweet dishes), then I have good news for you. You can eat your sweets and still not mess with your healthy diet,” she wrote, listing some essential tips you must keep in mind.
*Eat in moderation, not with guilt or greed but rather with gratitude. That way you will be satisfied soon.
*Sip on warm water half an hour post eating your favourite food.
*Drink this tea 1 hour after having your favourite food.
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Mint- curry leaf- Ginger Tea: Add 7-10 curry leaves, a handful of mint leaves and grate a small piece of ginger in a glass of water. Boil for 3 minutes, strain and sip on it. You’ll feel light and relaxed.
*Try to eat sweets for lunch and not for dinner.
*Have a light dinner on those days when you eat your favourite foods.
Dietician Kajal Aggarwal, Founder, Dietician Kajal – Diet and Nutrition App, too, emphasised that it is possible to enjoy one’s favourite foods and yet stay healthy. “The key to enjoying favourite foods without compromising on health is moderation and balance. This means that one can consume their favourite foods occasionally, but in limited amounts and not make them a regular part of their daily diet. One can also modify their favourite foods to make them healthier by using healthier cooking methods or substituting some ingredients with healthier options,” she shared.
She suggested keeping the following things in mind:
Portion control: It is important to control the portion size of favourite foods to avoid consuming excess calories.
Frequency: One should not make favourite foods a regular part of their daily diet. Instead, they can indulge in them occasionally, such as once a week or on special occasions.
Cooking methods: One should opt for healthier cooking methods such as grilling, baking, or steaming instead of deep frying.
Healthy substitutions: One can substitute some ingredients in favourite foods with healthier options, such as using whole wheat flour instead of refined flour or using low-fat cheese instead of regular cheese.
Balancing the diet: One should balance their overall diet by consuming a variety of nutrient-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
Similarly, Nmami Agarwal, a nutritionist, mentioned that it’s a common misconception that foods that are enjoyable to eat are inherently unhealthy. “However, it’s possible to enjoy your favourite foods while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle,” she said, suggesting the following tips:
Build a healthy relationship with food: It’s essential to develop a positive relationship with food, where you view it as a source of nourishment and enjoyment, rather than a source of guilt or shame. Listen to your body and eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full, and allow yourself to indulge in moderation.
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Choose alternative options for your health: There are often healthier alternatives to your favourite foods that are just as delicious. For instance, instead of a pizza of maida have bajra or ragi based pizzas, have airfried burgers instead of fried ones.
Practice portion control: It’s possible to enjoy your favourite foods without overindulging. Try using smaller plates, splitting a meal with a friend, or packing up leftovers to enjoy later.
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