The auspicious nine nights of festivities are back! The garba fun, the puja pandals, and the vibrant colours fill the air with much fervour. The festival also witnesses devotees observing fasts for nine days to honour the goddess of power. Fried items, chips, namkeen and sweets certainly make one drool, but one should keep a tab on eating to avoid any health mishaps. Here are some Navratri fasting tips that will help conquer your cravings, keep you healthy and energized:
Don’t go hungry
Eat your 3 major meals- breakfast, lunch, and dinner on time. Do not starve yourself. Staying hungry for a long time can cause muscle weakness and dehydration. Consume a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and milk. Steer clear from fried food and go for grilled, baked and roasted food items. Clean eating can cleanse your body from the unhealthy food that you’ve consumed and help control the blood glucose level in your body.
When you feel hungry reach out for fruits like apples, bananas, and oranges. These fruits will keep you active and energized the whole day. If you’re a working professional, carrying some nuts such as almonds, walnuts and pistachios will help control your cholesterol and will also satiate your hunger. Don’t forget to get your dose of protein from curd, buttermilk, and paneer.
Let sugar take a backseat
Navratri fasts can be the best way to overcome your sugar dependency. Switch from refined sugar to healthier alternatives. Start by consuming 2 pieces of black dates per day. If you get sugar cravings, control them by eating fruit or vegetable salads. Also, try not to eat too many festive sweets. If you’re yearning for it, one mithai a day will not hurt you.
Say no-no to fried foods
Festive season calls for festive eating. Food items such as fried chaat, sabudana vada, puris, potato chips, and fruit juices may be popular but, they are unhealthy. Instead make use of rajgira and sattu. Navratri is a time of season change, your body becomes vulnerable to toxins. Avoid such foods at all costs. Stick to your clean eating diet plan. If you are desperately craving for such foods, eat in moderation.
One of the most important Navratri fasting tips is to stay hydrated throughout the nine days. Drink at least 2-3 litres of water every day. Other than water you can go for lemon water, coconut water, buttermilk, and green tea. Milk tea and coffee are good too provided you keep a check on the number of cups. They help curb hunger pangs but drinking them on an empty stomach can adversely affect your digestive system. Also, alcohol should be off-limits as it lowers your metabolism and causes dehydration.
Last but not least
Lastly, Navratri fasting and festivities can make you feel tired. Ensure that your body gets enough rest these nine days. Stress less and do not overwork. Never go hungry for hours when you’re at work. Always carry some healthy munchies with yourself. Avoid fasting if your pregnant or have some sickness.
Shubh Navratri to all of you!
Note: Consult a qualified clinical dietitian before taking up any fasts specially when you already have a known medical condition.