Navratri are almost here and if you too are fasting for the navratras then you must read this article. The Navratri fast is said to be important because, at this time of the year, when the season changes, the body needs to get rid of toxins in order to increase the immunity levels. But fasting should be done in a manner you get the maximum physical and spiritual benefits.
This time around make it a healthy Navratri and by healthy we don’t mean boring. Healthy can be fun and exciting too and well show you how.
Here are seven ways to control hunger pangs and boost energy levels.
Fill up on fiber-rich foods
Eating foods high in fiber can fill up the stomach and stop your hunger pangs, allowing you to fast without feeling hungry. Including fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, yogurt, and salad in your festive diet is a great way to suppress hunger and appetite. Apart from curbing hunger, high-fiber foods are among most potent foods for relieving constipation and weight loss.
While some people binge on snacks and fruits even when they are fasting, there are many people who starve themselves to death. The thumb rule is to avoid fasting for too long. If you want to detoxify, eat fresh fruits or nuts at intervals. Prolonged fasting can lead to a number of problems such as weakness, anaemia, fatigue and headaches.
Make sure you stay well hydrated throughout the day by drinking plenty of water. Drinking adequate amount of water is the best way to fight hunger when observing fasting. It acts as an appetite suppressant, helps boost metabolism and cleanses your body of toxins. Drinking water before a meal has been shown to reduce hunger and stave off overeating, which is hugely beneficial for weight loss. If you’re bored with drinking plain water, try adding a squeeze of lemon or lime to flavour the water. You can also opt for other fluids like coconut water and buttermilk.
Have a balanced diet:
Fasting does not mean you would have to starve and deprive yourself of essential nutrients. It is very important to follow a balanced diet. While your options are limited, there are a lot of healthier options that you still haven’t experimented with. Sabudana, kuttu, makhana, arbi, sweet potatoes, palak are all vrat staples that are loaded with essential nutrients, minerals and vitamins.
Avoid processed foods
Stay away from food items that are loaded with sugar, salt and unhealthy fats. These foods can cause a rapid rise and fall in blood sugar after consumption, resulting in hunger and leading to overeating. Although highly-processed food provides a temptation to overeat that many simply cannot resist, studies have shown that they can lead to various health problems, including weight gain and obesity.
Observing fasting during Navratri doesn’t mean you’ll have to put an end to your regular routine. In fact, a 2008 study published in the American Journal of Physiology: Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology suggest that any form of aerobic exercise helps regulate appetite to control hunger pangs. Indulge in yoga, meditation or other light activities to keep yourself busy and your mind off of food.
It is a good idea to have small and frequent vrat meals through the day to keep your blood sugar controlled and your metabolism up. Vrat special namkeens are often loaded with too much of rock salt. Keep nuts handy. Small bites and snacks in between meals like a fruit chaat, baked sharkandi fries with sendha namak and black pepper or raw banana kebabs are some of the yummy options you can explore this fasting season.
Share more tips in the comments section below, we’d love to hear your thoughts.