Monthly Archives: December 2014

Feasting during the festivities

The holiday season in India starts with Dussehra and the festivities extend till the New Year. The festivities mean parties, socializing and no party or social event is complete without feasting. We are busier than usual and aren’t able to keep up with the work-out routine. Year after year, most of us pack on a kg and a half during these festivities and this extra weight stays with us.

But socializing does not mean that you cannot be in control of your health. With a little know-how, you can satisfy your desire for traditional favourites and still enjoy a guilt-free feast.

Plan Ahead

If you know you are going to be attending a holiday party at night and will be indulging in not-so-healthy foods, eat healthy and low-calorie foods during the day to balance out your caloric intake, while still getting your daily nutrients.

Also, be sure to exercise that day to balance out the calories consumed.

Make Substitutions

Many ingredients in traditional holiday recipes can be substituted for ones that are not as unhealthy. For more on substitutions

Avoid Overeating

You will be much happier and feel better the next day if you resist the temptation of overeating.

  • Choose moderate portions of foods you like best and fill up half your plates with fruits or vegetables.
  • Eat slowly so your body can digest and signal that is full and only go back for seconds if you are still hungry.
  • Sweets are fine in moderation. If you are going to indulge, enjoy, and limit yourself to a small quantity.

Exercise

Be sure to keep up your normal exercise routine if you have the time to do so. For those whose exercise schedule is altered by the holidays, there are other ways to get your exercise in during the busy season. Visit the link for more on how to incorporate exercise in your daily routine.

Be Selective

Before you begin eating at a holiday party, check out all of the options and choose the foods that you really want to eat.

  • If everything looks tempting and delicious, have a small sample of different foods to satisfy your craving.
  • Use self control and limit yourself to the sweets and treats that you really love.

Enjoy the holidays and follow these tips to stay healthy and prepare for the New Year.

Fats which make you FIT  

olive-oil-968657_640Fats and oils are integral part of cooking and our diet. Apart from adding on to the flavor it has numerous other functions to play in our bodies. We often are scared of adding oils because of numerous health risks they pose. But by monitoring the quantity as well as the type of oils we consume we can negate their harmful effects and get benefited by their consumption. In the following write up I will be rating the fats as well as the foods which are good sources of fat and will list their benefits / harmful effects as well.

Fit For Life: Fats in this category contain at least 80 percent unsaturated fats. Most contain some essential fatty acids, and all contribute to the health and well-being of the mind and body. But being healthy does not permit us to overindulge in fats kept in this group.

FOOD

                                 COMMENT
Flax seeds, flax oil Richest source of essential fatty acids and DHA.
Fish (cold-water) Coldwater fish, especially salmon and tuna are rich sources of DHA (docosahexenoic acid).
Seeds (sunflower, pumpkin) Rich source of essential omega 6 fatty acids, mostly unsaturated fats.
Canola oil Ranks second to flax oil as the oil richest in essential fatty acids, especially DHA
Soy products (e.g., soy milk, tofu) Rich in essential omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, similar to fish oils. Also, contains lecithin. Can reduce cholesterol
Olive oil Mostly unsaturated fats
Nuts Almonds and walnuts contain 90 percent unsaturated fats; cashews are low in total fat that is mostly unsaturated.
Monounsaturated Fats
Peanut butter Mostly unsaturated fats. A good source of protein. Healthy alternatives to peanut butter are soybean butter, sesame seed butter, and cashew butter.
Hummus (a spread made from chickpeas) Approximately 85 percent unsaturated fats, plus good source of protein, folic acid, many vitamins and minerals and no cholesterol
Wheat germ Mostly unsaturated, plus rich source of many other vitamins and minerals

 Moderate Category: Fats in this category contain a balance of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids which, if eaten in moderation, contribute to the health and well-being of the body. In addition, many of these foods are rich sources of other nutrients as well.

FOODS

COMMENT

Yogurt (low fat) Like all dairy products, mostly saturated fats.
Milk (1 or 2 %) Around 50 percent of the fat content of whole milk
Egg More unsaturated than saturated fats, yolk is high in cholesterol. Use only egg white if you are cholesterol sensitive.
Beef (sirloin, trimmed) High cholesterol, around 50-50 saturated and unsaturated fats.
Turkey (breast, skinless) Around 50-50 saturated and unsaturated fats.
Cocoa butter Even though it is a saturated fat, it is metabolized like a monounsaturated fat similar to olive oil.

Not To Be Consumed: You could eliminate all the fats in this category and you would be healthier if you do so. Any nutrient that might be in any of these fats could be obtained from other fats with better nutritional credentials.

FOODS

COMMENT

Tallow (chicken or beef) Ninety percent saturated fats
Lard High in saturated fatty acids
Palm-kernel oil Mostly saturated fats. Contains palmitoleic acid, a fat, which eaten in excess, can interfere with essential fatty acid metabolism.
Coconut oil Over 90 percent saturated fats
Hydrogenated Fats Tops the list of fats that are bad for you.
Margarines High in hydrogenated fats, especially those with a lot of coconut, palm- kernel and hydrogenated oils.
Shortening Especially those with lard, hydrogenated oils, palm kernel, coconut oils or tallow.
Cottonseed oil More unsaturated than saturated fat, but usually hydrogenated and may contain pesticide residues.

By choosing fats from the fit category we can go from fat to fit and enjoy our meals as well.