Indian festivities are moments to rejoice, spend time with loved ones, and eat delicious food. Without sugar-rich treats like gulab jamun, burfi, and of course the countless variations of ladoos, Dusshera and Diwali, would be incomplete. For those of us who are trying to get fit, letting down our guard during the holiday season would also mean undoing months of efforts in terms of dieting and exercise. It would take enormous willpower to resist these sugary delights, which is why weight gain during the holidays is quite common. Here are a few tips on how to eat smartly during festivals in order to keep your health in check.
1. Avoid going out on an empty stomach
Avoid leaving on an empty stomach if you plan to go out. Before you step out, have a light snack. Boiled corn, mixed vegetable salad, a fruit bowl, sprouts, vegetable soup, yoghurt with crushed nuts, whole wheat bread sandwiches, and so on. This will keep you full and prevent you from binging/overeating while out.
2. Keep hydrated
Drink plenty of water throughout the day. It will keep you hydrated and satiate your false hunger.
3. Choose healthier desserts
Choose dry fruits, shrikhand (made with hung curd), dark chocolates, til or peanut chikkis, gond ka ladoo, and other sugar-free sweets. Those made with jaggery or organic honey are good to go too.
It’s going to be challenging to say “NO" when your loved ones offer you dessert, especially during this festive season. Not to worry. Choose one, take your time eating it, and relish the experience. You now understand what to do next. Utilize your subsequent meals to make up for your increased calorie consumption. Salads and vegetables are higher in fibre, and there are more proteins and fewer carbohydrates.
5. Be a health-conscious host
Serve snacks such as idlis, baked chaklis, sprout-chaat, masala peanuts, unsalted nuts, and dry fruits. Serve no soft drinks or juice substitutes. Better alternatives would include lemon water, Jal jeera, spiced buttermilk, flavoured milk, fresh fruit juices, etc.
6. Remind yourself to exercise
Exercise would speed up your body’s metabolism and help you burn calories more quickly. Prior to going out to a party, it is best to work out. You would burn more calories when you eat at a party because of the accelerated metabolism.