In India, festivals are occasions that are incomplete without extravagant food spreads and sumptuous meals. Though Navratri involves fasting for nine days, people tend to put on weight while indulging in the traditional delicacies that are unique to the festival.
A lot of people who fast during Navratri also look at it as a way of losing weight. No matter the objective in your mind, it is important to ensure a safe and healthy diet regimen when fasting during Navratri.
The healthy approach
Small frequent meals – Instead of starving yourself, having small meals frequently distributed throughout the day is a more effective option. This prevents the body’s blood glucose levels from dropping too low and replenishes your energy.
Avoid fried food like puri and foods that have high sugar content. Also, avoid overeating in a single meal.
Prevent dehydration – Fluids such as coconut water, lime water, buttermilk and fruit and vegetable juice keep the body hydrated while also providing energy for the routine physical activities. Incorporate fruit juice, fruit smoothies, fruit chaat and curd in your meals.
Do not just rest – Fasting is not a reason for you to shun all your routine activities and just lie down. Indulge in all the normal chores that you are used to on a regular basis.
Carbohydrates – In India, Saboodana is an extremely favorite choice of food when fasting. And why not; it is an excellent form of carbohydrate that provides energy to keep the metabolism alive. Besides, food like saboodana, banana, boiled potatoes, etc. also provides essential micro-nutrients to the body. Sweet potato is also an extremely suitable option when fasting. Not only does it have a low glycemic index, it also provides a healthy amount of fibre and vitamin A.
Soups – Consume low calorie soups.
Healthy snacks – Avoid binging on fried snacks like potato chips in between meals. Instead, opt for healthier options like dry fruits, nuts and fruits. Limit your sugar intake as much as possible. Try replacing sugar with honey or jaggery instead.
Eat light before dandiya – Avoid eating a heavy meal before indulging in a dandiya session. Eat light food that will provide energy for physical exertion and will not hamper your stamina level.
Here are certain healthy meal options that will help in losing weight when fasting during Navratri:
Breakfast: Skimmed milk, fruits, Amaranth porridge, nuts, almonds, fruit shakes, fruit smoothies, buttermilk and milk.
Brunch: Lemon water, coconut water, green tea, buttermilk and fruits.
Lunch: Salads, sweet potato, saboodana, fruits, Amaranth porridge, vegetable curry, boiled potato, paneer (low fat), yoghurt (low fat), cucumber salad, cabbage and samak rice.
Dinner: Salad, vegetables, paneer (low fat), sweet potato, fruit chat, apple kheer, milk with fruits,
saboodana vadas, etc.