Navratri is one of the most important festivals of Hindus, celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm and excitement all across the country. Traditionally associated with Goddess Durga and worshipping her nine incarnations, the festival holds significance in north India, West Bengal, as well as the central and western regions of the country.
While some strictly believe in holding fast for all nine days, most people fast only on the first and the last days, and a few just abstain from consuming alcohol, onion, garlic or non-vegetarian items. Interestingly, the festival chalks out a strict list of food items that one can consume while fasting. It is during Navratri that a few ingredients - which otherwise get a convenient skip in a regular Indian kitchen - resume utmost importance.
The motive behind these fasts is not always religious. Many people take advantage of this opportunity and attempt to shed extra kilos. It has been scientifically proven that fasting is very beneficial for our body. Many people also restrict themselves from consuming water on the days of fasting. However, fasting for a long period can bring some trouble for your health. The most important thing to keep in mind is to fast but in a correct way.
Following certain guidelines will help you fast in a healthy way to and shed those extra pounds this Navratri:
- Don’t Starve: Fasting doesn’t mean starving yourself. You should take care of your health and eat something in the morning. Health should always be your first priority. Fasting for a long time lead to problems like weakness, acidity and headache.
- Don’t Feast: Fast means eat less or eat a healthy diet, but most people do it in a wrong manner. They tend to consume more fasting dishes and oily things. Fasting does not mean fried potatoes or pakodas. You have to keep an eye on your diet. Try to avoid those dishes which are low in fibre like sabudana khichdi, kheer and choose healthier options.
- Small and frequent meals: Small and frequent meal is the key here. Fasting does not mean not to eat anything whole day. It will help you to maintain your metabolism. Do eat in 2 hours gap as it will help to prevent acidity.
- Drink plenty of liquids: Drink more water as compared to your non fasting days. It is a natural cleanser for your organs and digestive system. It helps to cleanse your toxins out and keep your body hydrated. You can go for lemon water, coconut water, fresh juices and milk. Every individual must consume 2-3 litres water per day.
- Sabudana khichdi or kheer: Don’t consume too much oily sabudana tikkies as it is rich source of carbohydrates. You can have sabudana khichdi or kheer.
- Avoid onion and garlic: As per our ancient mythology, consuming onion and garlic during Navratri is strictly prohibited, especially for those keeping fasts. Apart from that it is also scientifically proven that onion and garlic are not much good as they produce a lot of heat in your body.
- Sendha namak: Sendha namak is enriched with potassium and easy to digest. It is not chemically processed. That is why most people use sendha namak during fasts in the form of pure salt.
- Fruit salads: You can have fresh fruits or you can go for fruit salads to bring in a new taste. It is the best option to control calories. It includes healthy sugar fructose which helps in charging your metabolism. Cucumber and tomatoes are the best options.
- Stay stress-free: Stress is very bad for your health especially during fasting. It can create problems for your health. Try to avoid stressful situations which worsen your condition. Don’t tire yourself. Take little breaks while working.
- Sleep is important: It is very difficult to get enough sleep during Navratri as people indulge in various religious activities during the night. 8 hour sleep is very necessary to stay fit and healthy. Most of us do not get enough time to sleep during celebration and it affects our physical and mental state.
Diabetic and pregnant woman should avoid Navratri fasting. It can cause a drop in the blood sugar
levels which is not good for you and yours baby health too.
For working women, it is very difficult to manage official work while fasting. Handling both things all together can be severely intricate. It is very important to keep yourself active and full of energy. If you have a sitting job, keep eating every 2 hours to prevent acidity as it worsens your troubles. Go for fruits and avoid high calorie food items.
Some important points to remember
- If you are a Garba fan, then avoid junk food before or after. Have light dinner which is high in fibre, carbohydrates and proteins. You can go for fruits, salads or sprouts.
- Try to avoid chilled water during or after Garba is it might lead to throat infections.
- Take bath with Luke warm water. It helps to avoid minor body pain and relieves you from tiredness.
- Embrace these tips while fasting and along with the blessings of Goddess Durga, you’ll enjoy Navratri festival by staying fit and healthy.
Lazoi Lifecare wishes everyone Happy Navratri. Stay Blessed.