Sweets, wonderfully crispy, fried snacks, and a whole lot of chocolate. Diwali is indeed the most fantastic time of the year, isn't it? But it's over now. And it's integral to jump back on to the fitness bandwagon with a vengeance if all those calories are to be burnt, and the effect of all that junk food is to be undone.
Whether it's the effect of excessive fat-containing food, or sugar, or alcohol, the best way to fight it is with a detox.
"A detox helps in cleansing the body internally. While a lot of people go on a prolonged fast, an easier alternative is to just eat right, and do cardio exercises that make you sweat, thereby removing toxins," says Dr Nupur Krishnan, clinical nutritionist and director, Bio-logics Nutrition Clinic, Mumbai.
What you need to do
Eating raw food items and salads is a great way to get rid of the toxins. Eat fresh vegetables like carrot, lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli and spinach, and fruits like watermelon, strawberries, cucumber, and orange juice. Add skimmed milk to your diet.
Consume lots of fluids
Try to drink at least two litres of water in a day. An electrolyte-balanced liquid diet comprising salted lime juice, coconut water, buttermilk, vegetable juice and plenty of plain water will help cleanse your system.
Increase fibre intake
Consume more fruits and soups that are rich in fibre like black bean soup, split pea soup or lentil soup. They can help avoid acidity.
Take the stairs
Don't take the elevator; take the stairs instead for a great, daily workout. If your workplace is close to your residence, walk it to work.
Turn vegetarian for a bit
Eat a balanced, vegetarian diet with cooked veggies and dal. That will help you reverse the effects of calorie-rich indulgences. Eat healthy, homemade vegetarian meals at small intervals.
Bid adieu to colas (just for a few days)
Avoid soft drinks and canned beverages for a bit. Opt for homemade buttermilk, lassi or lemonade instead. Also, lock off the alcohol cabinet for a bit.
Make a fitness regime
The best way to burn all the calories is with simple cardio exercises like walking, jogging and swimming.
Go for a body spa
It's not all hard work, a bit of relaxation helps too. A massage aids the detox process. A steam session or a hot water bath post the massage also helps rid toxins from the body.
(Note: Inputs from Dr Saurabh Jain, consultant physician at Cumballa Hill Hospital and Heart Institute; Tripti Gupta, lifestyle nutrition consultant, IPink and Dr Amrapali Patil, weight managment expert and founder, Trim N Tone and Dr Nupur Krishnan.)
Basal Metabolic Index
Know your Terms
It's not difficult to figure out whether your weight is adequate or way off the optimum range. There's a scientific way to go about it- by calculating your BMI. Experts believe that following the 'I look in the mirror and then decide if my weight is right' approach is impractical, and the height-weight charts are way too generic and outdated to be of any use. So the most trusted route to follow is to calculate your BMI.
The formula is simple- BMI = Weight in kilos/Height in square meter. For example, if your weight is 54 kg and height is five feet (1.524 meters), your BMI would be 54/1.524 x 1.524 = 23.2. Now compare it to the BMI categories (Underweight = less than18.5, Normal weight = 18.5 - 24.9, Overweight = 25 - 29.9, Obesity = 30 or greater). So at 23.2, you would be perfect according to big weight loss experts. But in case the answer is say 16, you need to consume more iron. If it's above, say 27, you should hit the gym.
Keep a check
You need to know your BMI to check where you stand. Take corrective measures if you are way off the mark.
(Note: Inputs by Kavita Devgan, a health writer and a nutritionist.)