What’s Diwali without mouth-watering mithai! Piping hot jalebis, gulab jamuns and the ever-so-delicious kaju katli — festivals in India are incomplete without a sumptuous spread of sweets and savouries to devour as you celebrate with friends and family. But, more often than not, we end up bingeing more than we probably should, and later fret to shed those extra kilos. If you’re one of those looking to go in for a complete detoxification, here’s what nutritionists recommend:
Take up intermittent fasting: This involves either a 16-hour fast on a daily basis or a bi-weekly 24-hour fast. It increases the production of autophagy, which helps to detox the body by eliminating the damaged cells. It also gives a break to the system to get rid of the previous toxins.
Reduce sugar intake: Our bodies need time to recover from the sweets consumed during the festive season. Therefore, it is vital to omit artificial sugar from your diet, which includes bakery products, sweets, chocolates, soft drinks, etc. for at least a week. If possible, try to avoid alternatives of sugar as well.
Hydration is the key: Drink at least three to four litres of water to keep your body hydrated. It will help you to flush out the toxins from your body through sweat and urine. It will also help boost digestion.
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Start your day with lemon water/detox water: You could start your day with a glass or two of warm water mixed with the juice of half a lemon. It flushes out all the toxins and excess sugar from your body, bolsters digestion and gives relief against symptoms of indigestion such as heartburn, burping and bloating. You could add some honey in your lemon water, or consume water with jeera (cumin seeds) or methi (fenugreek seeds) soaked in it.
Stick to home-cooked meals: Rather than ordering from out, a simple home-cooked dish such as daliya or khichdi can provide the nourishment required. While snacking, opt for a piece of fruit instead of something fried. Also, include raw, steamed, or sautéed vegetables, dal and high-fibre grains such as amaranth, millet, oats and brown rice.
Go vegan for a week: With the help of a balanced vegan diet, you will be able to cut down processed food and excess salt from your diet. With lots of vegetables and fruits, your body will produce fewer toxins and will get a higher level of protein.
Don’t miss out on exercise: Regular exercise helps detox as it regulates the circulation of the lymph and blood system. If you do not have much time, you could go for a quick walk, or do a 10-minute regime which includes squats and other such exercises. Even something as simple as ditching the elevator to take the stairs can help ensure you have a healthy heart.
Inputs from nutritionists Avni Kaul, Pooja Banga and Rohini Patil
Author tweets @srinidhi_gk
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