Eat to stay slim

Leading nutritionist Pooja Makhija who counsels Bollywood’s fittest stars Ranbir Kapoor, Deepika Padukone and Sonam Kapoor, reveals their diet secrets

Stars need to keep fit too and this is how they do it

Ranbir’s secret of keeping fit is that unlike earlier, where he ate three large meals, he is now eating more smaller meals. So that means eating every two hours. He also ate a lot of red meat which is now restricted, to a large extent, in his diet. Therefore, his secret right now is eating more often and cutting down on the red meat.

Fashionista Sonam Kapoor finally solved her weight issue and has lost weight beautifully. She does have the sporadic habit of emotional eating, but otherwise she is very disciplined when it comes to eating every two hours, controlling sweet and fried foods and reducing her food intake outside. Her constant dining out pulls her down very often but she is learning to control it. Despite her strong will power she may waver sometimes but she has seen what it takes to shed those extra pounds.
Pooja Makhija and Deepika Padukone
Pooja Makhija and 
Deepika Padukone
For those who have a desk job, and don’t get much exercise

If there isn’t enough external physical activity, make sure that the internal body gym is always working. If you can’t reach the gym make sure that your body is actively burning those calories. The more often you feed your body, the more you will activate your internal gym. So the more often you eat, your body has to expend that much more to burn the food.

When we are talking about weight it is the balance between intake and output. If you can’t control the output in terms of exercise, make sure your intake is broken into so many little meals that your body has to expend so much more energy to burn it. This will not only help you lose weight but also help you get better hair and a better skin.

When I say eating every two hours it means eating healthy every two hours and not fried snacks or a chocolate. Healthy options for instance can be a bowl of kurmura, two Marie biscuits, a fruit or a bowl of salad. Also liquids such as juices, tea and coffee are not being counted as smaller meals.

Stress can cause over-eating, so control it

Using food as a soul mate and a stress buster is one of the worst relationships you can have with food. Food is just fuel so if you’re going to find comfort in food then your weight is always going to be an issue. It is very simple, if you eat when you’re stressed then the stress is not going to go away because you’re eating, it will only add to it later. When you finish that bar of chocolate or binge eat, you will realise that you’ve broken your diet or have eaten something additional and then you’ll have to deal with more stress due to weight issues. Eating food never releases stress so you have to find another way to release it. Perhaps it could be an exercise regime or talking to a friend or screaming all that stress away but eating in excess is not the way to release stress.

Avoid fad diets

They are called fad diets because they don’t work. As soon as the weight goes off it comes back as quickly or even quicker. One must remember that a diet has to be a balance of five basic nutrients which act as five fingers - proteins, vitamins, carbs, fats and minerals. If a diet removes any `finger’ then you are not making an impactful fist. So if the diet lays more emphasis on proteins or you are completely neglecting the carbs or you’re only focusing on liquids or fruits and vegetables then you’re ignoring the other nutrients. Any diet that is tilted more towards one nutrient and is not a balance of the five nutrients is a fad. And fad diets will never work!

A simple tip to stay fit

Whatever your current eating pattern is, just break that up into eight parts. Also include good quality proteins in your diet in the first half of the day because you need to jump-start the day. So if you’re going to give your body proteins, remember these are harder to digest. They will bump up your metabolism rate by 30 per cent. So if you have bumped up your BMR in the first half of the day then your body will be active all through the day. Good quality proteins are sprouts, quinoa, egg whites and a little bit of tofu.

A proper diet can fix insomnia

Many young girls are starving themselves so as to lose weight. The minute you remove carbs from your diet, insomnia is an immediate effect. If insomnia is related to the loss of carbs in your diet then put back the carbs and sleep will follow.Also make sure you do not sleep on an empty stomach as one should never sleep hungry. The other reason could also be that many young girls due to their lifestyles may also overeat during the latter part of the day. College and school going girls, a lot of times, skip breakfast due to their busy morning schedules. Then when they return home they tend to binge and overeat. So when you pig out your body has to do so much work that sleep evades you. This could also lead to insomnia.

You can get flawless skin with a good diet

You can only get flawless skin with a good diet because you are what you eat. Whatever you eat always reflects on your skin. So if you eat crap then you will have crappy skin. Make sure your eat at least 3-4 bowls of vegetables, 2-3 fruits, 8-10 glasses of water and that you have a glass of vegetable juice daily.

Adult acne can be cured with a healthy food intake

Genes do not determine the quality of your skin. If you’re not drinking enough water, not eating right or if there is too much pollution around you then you will get acne. Acne is acquired not genetic. So to avoid acne follow the same tips as for a flawless skin.

Get that small waist

You can always be thin even if you have a broad build. Your framework may be large but you can always be lean. Just follow regular eating patterns and do not bulk eat. If you have a large frame or a small frame you still have to do the same things as you would do to get a beautiful figure.

Enjoy the tipple and still stay trim

Wine is the lowest on calories, so you could have 1-2 glasses of red, white or sparkling wine once or twice a week. Other spirits have a higher percentage of alcohol content in them. Alcohol has 7 calories per gram which is equal to fat calories. And remember that other spirits also needed to be mixed with carbonated drinks which only increase the calorie intake. Avoid cocktails as they contain excessive amounts of sugar in the form of mixers. You want to avoid the carbs but you’re ready to gulp down alcohol! Remember that alcohol is not only fattening but also very unhealthy as it causes dehydration which in turn causes bad skin.

Avoid snacking in between meals? Nah!

Why should you avoid snacking in between meals? You need not give up snacking - just replace it with healthier options.If you’re eating a packet of fried potato chips replace it with a bowl of kurkura. Some other examples are to replace cream biscuits with Marie or Crack Jack biscuits and eat two at a time.

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