Navratri is here. While many observe a fast for these 9 days, they also enjoy the festivities by playing garba or dandiya, the traditional Gujarati dance. This needs optimum energy and stamina which may not be possible if you don’t follow the right diet. Here are some quick-tips which will make fasting easier and keep you energised for your gala garba night.
9-day fasting tips by nutritionist Priya Kathpal
- Fasting could prove to be tiring particularly for the stomach. Long gaps between meals and very limited options to eat could lead to acidity and slow down your metabolism. Even though one is fasting, certain foods like dry fruits and fruits are always allowed. One should make use of these food items and eat every 3 hours.
- Keep yourself well-hydrated by the miracle fluid ‘water’. It is advisable to have as much of it as possible. The intake of water should be more than what it is on the non-fasting days. You can also drink a lot of other fluids like fresh juices and milk. These will help cleanse your toxins and maintain an optimum fluidity in your body.
- Certain people choose to eat one whole meal during fasting but if this meal if planned wisely may take care of most nutrients required by the body. Make use of vegetables like sweet potatoes and potatoes along with main meals. Some people also add tomatoes, bottle gourd, cucumber and leafy vegetables like spinach. Do not miss out on them if they are allowed in your fast.
- Focus on concentrated sources of energy like nuts and dry fruits to keep getting the energy throughout the day. Eating whole fruit is always better than juice as it will give you the required fibre and make you feel full. Add extra serving of dairy product especially curds and cottage cheese in the form of buttermilk or lassi to your diet.
- Avoid fried food items like potato chips and sabudana wadas. They are not a healthy way to fast and would lead to unnecessary acidity and weight gain in long term considering you will be fasting for 9 days.
Stay energised for garba
Eating an hour before garba will not make you feel heavy during the dance and will also ensure that you are not low on energy. It is important to make sure that you create a balance. Have a combination of proteins and carbohydrates to keep you going for long. You can opt for some dry fruit milkshake or a buckwheat pancake with some cottage cheese cubes.
Do not starve for a long time
Fasting has been practised since ages for religious purposes and sometimes even as a weight loss tool. But one cannot ignore that it’s not a usual lifestyle habit and may have long-term adverse effects on health. Most of the experts agree that fasting is not healthy if done in a very restrictive manner for a long time. It results in fluid loss and lowers the metabolic rate of the body. People who do not focus on a balanced diet otherwise, and choose to fast for more than a day may compromise immunity and suffer from dehydration and vitamin mineral deficiencies.
According to nutritionist Priya Kathpal, this is how a healthy Navratri fasting diet plan should look:
- Breakfast: Fruits + cup of milk
- Mid morning: Dry fruits
- Lunch: Sabudana khichdi with some groundnuts in it/or wheat flour chapati with curd or buttermilk
- Snack: Coconut water or lemon juice
Image source: Getty Images
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Published: September 18, 2014 2:45 pm | Updated:September 21, 2017 12:18 pm