Thursday, 17 July 2014

Kantola (Spiny Gourd) benefits

Kantola (Spiny Gourd) benefits

Spiny Gourd or Kantola  this vegetable is very popular in Rajasthan especially during the rainy season.  It has tiny spines all over its body and that is why it has got its name as “Spiny Gourd”. It is also known as Teasle gourd, Kakrol, Kankro, Kartoli, Kantoli and Bhat korola. It is mainly cultivated in the mountain regions of India. 

It belongs to “Cucurbitaceous” family and look wise Kantola is similar to bitter gourd and has a shape like water droplet of 2-3 cm diameter. Spiny gourd pods are dark green in color and they change color as they get ripe from light green to yellow, by indicating that they are overripen and bitterer in taste.

Only spiny gourds with the dark green color are edible and it is advised to prepare a dish after peeling the outer surface of it. It is mild and easy to digest.

Health Benefits
It is a rich source of phytonutrients and low in calories only 17 cal per 100g. They are full of different nutrients like dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.

Reduce blood sugar level in diabetic patients Kantola is rich in Phyto-nutrient, polypeptide-P, plant insulin and charantin, which boosts the glycogen synthesis in the cells of liver, muscle and adipose tissue. Hence known to be beneficial to diabetic people

Reduce the chances of cancer and is anti-aging : Kantola also has antioxidants like Vit C, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthins that are known as protective scavengers against oxygen-derived free radicals  All these compounds work as the anti-aging compound. Also they hunts down excess toxic free radicals from our body to reduce the chances of cancer.

Improve digestion: It contains fibers that will help to stimulate the digestion. Spiny gourd also helps to cure the problem of indigestion and constipation.

Read your labels - Enriched and Fortified foods

Read your labels - Enriched and Fortified foods

Read your labels well, have you come across words like Enriched and Fortified and wondered what it means or is there any difference between the two....yes... read on to know

"Enriched" and "fortified" are terms that mean nutrients—usually vitamins or minerals—have been added to make a food more nutritious.

"Enriching" means adding back nutrients that were lost during food processing. For example, B vitamins, lost when wheat is refined, are added back to white flour.

"Fortified" means adding nutrients that were never present in the food to begin with. For example, milk is fortified with vitamin D to help your body absorb milk's calcium and phosphorus, but vitamin D doesn't occur in milk naturally.

Mrs Shilpa Mittal Nutritionist and Diet Consultant Founder Shilpsnutrilife - Diet and lifestylemakeover

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Diabetes management during Ramadan

Diabetes management during Ramadan

  • Monitor your blood glucose regularly during the fast, especially in the early days.
  • Delay your Suhoor meal until the latest time, just before dawn and not at midnight. Break your fast (Iftar) at the earliest time.
  • Choose water or aim to drink sugar free and caffeine free drinks frequently throughout the evening and before dawn. 
    If you experience hypoglycemic symptoms, it is advisable to break the fast and make up for it after Ramadan.
  • Avoid exercise during the day, and take rest when possible to help avoid lowering of blood glucose levels.Limit physical activity during fasting hours and be more active after sunset.
  • Watch out for eating too many sweets and keep the portion sizes moderate. Overeating is a greatest risk. 
  • Continue taking your diabetes medicine, regarding dosage and timings talk to your doctor.
  •  Suhoor meal should contain a balance of whole grain sources of complex carbohydrates as well as some protein from lean sources of meat, fish and poultry, small amounts of heart healthy fats, limit added sugars this will slow the digestion and the feeling of fullness last as long as possible into the day. Also include fresh fruits, vegetables, and yoghurt in your meals. Limit the dates (tamor) to two or three pieces.
  • Keep sensible portions in mind and follow the same guidelines for healthy eating that you do the rest of the year. with an emphasis on whole grains,

Monday, 14 July 2014

Fresh dates health benefits

 Fresh dates health benefits

Ramadan is the month especially when fresh dates are seen in abundance.Dates are a type of sweet fruit that grows on palm trees. Dates are a good source of energy. Around 100gm of fresh dates gives 133kcal.

Up to 80 percent of the date flesh is sugar that the body can easily access for energy. Fresh dates have sugar like fructose and dextrose that when eaten replenishes energy and revitalizes the body instantly; thus, for these qualities, dates are being used to breakfast during Ramadan months. 

Fresh dates are a particularly good source of calcium, which helps promote strong teeth and bones.

Dates are rich in dietary fiber. Most of the fiber is of the insoluble type, promoting smooth functioning of intestinal tract. It also prevents dietary LDL cholesterol absorption in the gut.

They contain many health benefiting flavonoid polyphenolic antioxidants known as tannins. Tannins are known to have anti-infective, anti-inflammatory, and anti-hemorrhagic (prevent easy bleeding tendencies) properties. 

Dates  are low in  fat, 100 g of dates, has only a fraction of a gram is fats.

Muslims generally break their fast by eating dates. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is reported to have said: “Break your fast by eating dates as it is purifying.”
So go ahead have a few dates everyday whether dried or fresh as u wish just enjoy the benefits............

Mrs Shilpa Mittal
Nutritionist and Diet Consultant
Founder Shilpsnutrilife - Diet and lifestylemakeover

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Get Off the Couch!!! to prevent childhood obesity

Get Off the Couch!!! to prevent childhood obesity

Staying active has more benefits than just helping to manage weight. It can reduce stress and anxiety, increase self esteem, decrease blood pressure and strengthen bones.
  • Limit the amount of time spent playing video games, watching TV and using the Internet to two hours or less a day. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend television viewing for children age 2 or younger.
  • Beware Beverages Cutting sugary drinks out of your child's diet (and your own) can help to significantly reduce the number of calories your child consumes every day. Sweetened drinks and fruit drinks offer nothing except sugar and calories. Water should be the main drink. Fruit juice, cordial and soft drinks should be left for occasional treats.
  • Try not to let your child skip meals esp eat Breakfast - Kids and teens who skip breakfast are not only at risk for developing a weight problem, skipping this meal also leaves kids and teens tired and irritable during the day -- and hungry. And the hungrier they are, the more likely the kids are to reach for high-calorie foods (and lots of them) that aren't very good for them
  • Family Dinner - When families eat together, they tend to eat healthier meals -- less fried foods and more vegetables.Eat at the table and turn off the TV. (parents responsibility)
  • Healthy Snacking- Snacking itself isn't bad for us, as long as we're careful about the snacks we choose and how much we eat.Encourage more fruit (2 serves/day), vegetables (5 serves/day) and nutritious snacks
  • Educate Your Kids - Inviting kids and teens to go grocery shopping with you or prepare meals by your side allows time for you to teach them about what a body needs and doesn't need. 
  • Focus on Health, Not on Weight - Instead of making food a battleground at mealtimes,  let kids decide when they are hungry and full, and maybe most importantly, model your own healthy relationship with food and exercise.
  • Offer healthy food choices, if unhealthy food choices are not kept in the house your child cannot ask for them
  • Get Moving - Encourage active games, sports after school, playing in the park.
  • Choose activities that you can do together, and if you cannot do this during the week, make plans to be active with your children on the weekends.
  • Treats" should be given occasionally.
  • Plan rewards not related to food eg. Buy coloured pencils, skipping rope, a new CD, toy, magazine, piece of clothing, visit a friend, movies, park, zoo or the pool.
  • Limit takeaway food and high fat snacks, use low fat dairy products, modify recipes
  • Use low fat cooking methods
  • If your child is constantly "hungry" they may actually be bored. Find something for them to do rather than eat
  • Be a Role Model – Kids look to parents and other adults for guidance. If we are eating badly, what kind of message does that send our kids? Show your kids proper nutrition by eating healthy yourself.
  • We all want to live long healthy lives. Let’s start our children out at the beginning to develop healthy habits that can last a lifetime.

Mrs Shilpa Mittal Nutritionist and Diet Consultant Founder Shilpsnutrilife - Diet and lifestylemakeover

Friday, 11 July 2014

Consult a professional if your child is overweight

 Consult a professional if your child is overweight

Is it right to put your child who may or may not be not ''technically'' overweight on a diet! because you think so...example just because his/her tummy isn't perfectly flat

If you want to help her/him self-esteem, let her know how beautiful she is just the way she is. I think giving her healthy choices for her food and encouraging a healthy amount of exercise is fine, but please don't restrict her healthy fat or calories according to what you think is right! In my opinion, you will do far more damage than good if you encourage her to do this.

Also since many of the clients want fast results they constantly ask me "Can medication help my child lose weight?"
None of the new medicines to treat obesity are approved for children or adolescents to use.  They may affect your child’s growth and development, and the risk of dangerous complications is far greater than any benefit they might have. 

By far the best approach is helping your whole family—including your child—change their behavior. Obesity is not just your child’s problem.  It is a problem that the whole family must be involved in solving.  Your child lives within your family environment. 

Obesity develops over time and cannot be solved overnight.  Remember that this is not an emergency.  Do not expect dramatic change.  That is unrealistic.

The best way to have a healthy weight is prevention. Be sure your family has healthy habits from the beginning, and prevent yourself and your children from becoming overweight. It is much easier to maintain a healthy weight than it is to lose weight.

A diet for an overweight or obese kid needs to be planned intelligently wherein his or her growth needs aren't compromised. Please do not force your diet plans on them.
Mrs Shilpa Mittal
Nutritionist and Diet Consultant
Founder Shilpsnutrilife - Diet and lifestylemakeover

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

How do kids become obese or overweight?

How do kids become obese or overweight?

Obesity is caused by complex interactions between genes, environment and behavior habits.

Many studies have shown that there is not a big difference in the amount of food eaten and physical activity between obese and non-obese kids. But probably small differences in eating and activity over time really add up and lead to weight gain.

Following pointers may be of help 

Eating patterm -Obese children do tend to eat larger portions or higher calorie foods, like high-fat foods. 

Physical activity and inactivity - Many studies have shown that kids who spend more time watching television and playing video games are at higher risk of becoming overweight.

Obese parents - Kids in families with obese parents tend to be obese themselves.  If one parent is obese or overweight, their teen has an 80% chance of being overweight.  This is probably because of a combination of genetics and family behavior and habits. 

Other factors - Very rarely, obesity is caused by an underlying medical condition.  Illnesses that can cause obesity include endocrine problems and some genetic syndromes.  Your doctor will probably be able to rule out an underlying medical problem by a physical exam, medical history or sometimes lab tests may be needed.

It's not about weight. It's about the present and future health problems that come with extra weight.

If we don't act now, today, this month, this year, we could raise the first generation of kids that live shorter, sicker lives than their parents.

Don't sit back and relax work for it today.

Mrs Shilpa Mittal Nutritionist and Diet Consultant Founder Shilpsnutrilife - Diet and lifestylemakeover