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Pile up the greens

Ditching the carbs and making friends with green, leafy vegetables is the first step towards a healthy diet.

health and fitness Updated: Jan 07, 2010 19:34 IST

Q. Iam 16 years old, 5’4” tall and weigh 64 kg. I cycle while going to my coaching class, which is around two km from my residence. This is my only workout for the day. I want to lose weight as I feel bad looking at girls around me. Please suggest a diet plan, which will fit my school and coaching class timings. I’m a vegetarian.
Aarushi Kumar

A. You have not specified your school and class timings. But you need to lose around 10 kg. Follow these guidelines:

1. Do not skip meals, especially breakfast. Instead of two heavy meals, have 4-5 small ones.
2. Always use skimmed milk. Remove the cream before making tea, coffee, curd and paneer.
3. Avoid simple carbohydrates in the form of sugar, jaggery and honey.
4. Increase the fibre in your diet by eating whole cereals, pulses, sprouts, and at least five portions of green leafy vegetables and fruits.
5. Increase protein intake in form of skimmed milk, curd, paneer, dal, tofu, whey supplements, egg whites, fish and chicken
6. Exercise regularly for about 45 minutes. Swimming and cycling too help.
7. For dinner, have complete, balanced meals and not junk food.
8. Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day.
9. Avoid sweets, mithai, chocolates, ice-cream, soft drinks, cakes etc.
10.Use only 2-3 tsp of oil for cooking per day.
11.Avoid refined/ processed foods (maida products).
12.Use only small amounts of coconut and groundnut in your diet.
13.Avoid too much cheese and butter.

Q. I am 35 years old, 5’5” tall and weigh 68 kg. I have excess weight around my abdomen. Can you suggest some exercises to reduce my weight? Also, suggest a good diet plan for me. I’m a vegetarian.
Abhishek Beohar

A. According to your height, your ideal body weight should be around 63-64 kg. So you need to lose around five kg. You can follow this diet:

Early morning: One glass of lukewarm water.

Breakfast: One glass of skimmed milk without sugar + 1 dal dosa with green chutney or sambar/ 1 cup of muesli.

Mid-morning: 1 glass of coconut water.

Lunch: 2-3 dry chapatis + 1 bowl of salad + 1 cup of sprouts/ soya chunks + 1 cup of vegetables.

After-lunch: One glass of thin buttermilk.

Evening snacks: 1 cup of green tea + chana chaat/ 2-3 multigrain biscuits/ wheat puffs.

7 pm: 1-2 seasonal fruits.

Dinner: 1 bowl of homemade vegetable soup + 2 small bhakris (jowar/ ragi/ bajri) (avoid rice at night) + 1 bowl of dal/ 1 cup of dahi kadhi/ dal + 1 cup of vegetables + salads/ raita.

Join a gym and follow an exercise programme that combines cardio and weight training. If you do not have any medical problems, you can gradually increase the intensity of your workout too.