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Be the perfect bride

Every bride wants to look perfect on her wedding day. For some, the last few months leading up to the big day can be most stressful, as they work extra hard to look good. Here are some tips to help you.
By Anjali Mukherjee | Hindustan Times, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JAN 10, 2010 05:23 PM IST
Every bride wants to look perfect on her wedding day, and understandably so. This is why for some women, the last few months leading up to the big day can be most stressful, as they work extra hard to look good.



Though a six-month preparation period comprising a good diet and exercise, skin and haircare regimen is the ideal run-up, if you face a time crunch, you could even begin just a few weeks prior to the wedding and still look radiant.

Consistent eating

Looking good and feeling great always comes with proper nourishment and adequate exercise. Stress makes many brides-to-be either overeat or resort to fad diets to lose weight. Since both are bad for your health, just try to be consistent in your eating habits.

Not eating properly could leave you feeling faint and may lead to other health issues. If you’re overweight, try shedding a few kilos. Your appearance and physical fitness are linked to your self-esteem and performance.

Here are a few healthy eating tips:

1. Eat smaller meals more frequently as this is more effective for weight loss.

2. Include plenty (at least 5-8 servings) of fruits and vegetables in your diet since one such serving is almost equal to half a cup of cooked vegetables or one cup of raw salads.

3. Drink at least two glasses of vegetable juice made from vegetables readily available at home such as tomatoes, spinach, bottle gourd, mint, coriander, etc. These help detoxify your body and also eliminate body odour.

4. Foods like garlic, onions and methi are good for health and have certain aromatic substances that reduce armpit, mouth, urine and stool odour.

5. Include at least 40-45 gm of proteins in your diet. Eat foods such as fish and egg white, and dairy products.

6. Ensure that your diet provides you sufficient calcium.

7. Freshly squeezed orange juice is great for your skin and hair, and also provides a lot of easy to digest condensed nutrients to your body.

Steer clear of flour

1. Avoid refined foods made from flour such as rumali roti, naan, noodles, etc as they make the body retain water and make you feel bloated.

2. Increase your water intake to at least three litres a day.

3. If you have acne, follow a low-fat diet with no more than two tea spoons of added oil in your food.

4. If you don’t already exercise, start now since workouts in any form help release endorphins, which relieve stress and keep you in good shape.

5. Ensure that you get adequate rest and sleep as they are crucial to combat stress. Deep breathing exercises are also effective relaxants.

6. Drink coconut water as least twice a week as it’s good for your skin and digestive system, and also works wonders for your hair.

7. Get an oil massage before the wedding, or an overnight oil application or hot oil treatment as it rejuvenates and nourishes the scalp, stimulates blood flow and encourages the growth of healthy hair. Also, when dry, brushing your hair stimulates the scalp and gets rid of dead hair.

Rinsing the hair with shampoo (mild, gentle ones) is good as it opens the hair scales and removes excess sebum, hair and dirt. If you plan to have a haircut, get it at least a week before the wedding to enable your hair to settle.

8. A cleansing and moisturising routine keeps the skin free of impurities. Above all, for an added glow, sleep for at least eight hours a day because your body does most of the skin-cleansing while you’re asleep. Cleansing the skin with water and using honey as a face mask opens up the pores and removes surface impurities.

But beware...

1. Try to avoid eating three large meals a day.

2. Chicken and other meat also cause body odour if they are not digested properly. So avoid these if you already suffer from body odour.

3. Limit your intake of or stay away from empty calorie foods — typically high fat, high sugar items such as French fries, heavy desserts, fried starters and alcohol — as they just add weight to your body without providing any benefits.

4. Avoid trying new facials before your marriage — if you are allergic to its ingredients you will be left with a blotchy face.
Following a good diet, cleansing routine and improving your lifestyle will make you look and feel good. Also, they’re great habits to incorporate for the next stage in your life.

Anjali Mukerjee is a nutritionist and founder of Health Total, a nutrition counselling centre.

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