The one thing the pandemic has been unable to disrupt is your sweet tooth. Many of us have thrown caution to the wind, with no gyms and lockdown as a great excuse to indulge. With the festive season just around the corner, celebrations and sweets are very much on the top of your mind.
In India, sweets are positively entrenched in our culture as happy celebration foods. It started with Ganesh Chaturthi, followed by Onam and now Dussehra.
But you can build our immunity and maintain a fit lifestyle if you limit your calories and consume wisely. Due to the limitation of outdoor activities, the body’s metabolism has gradually slowed down, and hence one must make a conscious effort to maintain our calorie consumption during this season.
Overindulgence in sweets can lead to a lot of health drawbacks. Excessive sugar calories can push one back on their diet/fitness regimen by adding empty calories, in the current situation, maintaining one’s general fitness is of utmost priority. At the same time, one cannot forego sweets entirely as festive celebrations would be dull without them.
Chef Sanjeev Kapoor and Nutritionist Ishi Khosla suggest four ways to consume your sweets this festival season smartly.
Practice healthy and homemade cooking:
With everyone mastering their cooking skills during the lockdown period, it is advisable to cook your sweets at home rather than purchasing. This is will not only help you monitor the ingredients, and the quantities that go into it, but will also enable a sense of satisfaction of it being self-made.
Portion control: It’s always better to take small helpings of your favourite meals and treats rather than depriving yourself of it. Monitor your portions and don’t overeat. Compensate when you can if you have had two helpings of laddoo’s for lunch, give it a skip during dinner. Ensure you restrict yourself to just one small serving. Walking back to the table for the second (and third servings) may add to your daily steps but will do nothing for your health.
Don’t forget to exercise:
Remove a small amount of time during the day to burn the excess calorie intake. It does not have to be a heavy session. Even light exercise is a must and should not be skipped! Even a 30 minutes workout can go a long way!
Sugar and calories go hand in hand. Therefore, resorting to sugar alternatives like low-calorie sweeteners is a smart way to celebrate this festival. Low-calorie sweeteners provide sweetness with minimal calories, and you don’t have to compromise on your craving! In addition to it, low-calorie sweeteners are absolutely safe to consume as well.
Renowned Chef Sanjeev Kapoor suggested, “Since I have a sweet tooth, the festive period is extremely exciting owing to the treats and sweets that are prepared. One cannot imagine celebrating a festival in India without our traditional sweets! However, I personally choose to opt for a low-calorie sweetener like Sugar-Free Green instead of using sugar in many of my sweet/dessert recipes. It gives the same sweet taste, with none of the sugar calories, so my family and I don’t have to worry about any excessive calorie consumption or weight gain in our festivities.”
Nutritionist Ishi Khosla also added, “With our movement being curtailed, our appetite falls but cravings increase. It is important to monitor your daily sugar intake, especially during festival season. Modak’s and ladoo’s are very inviting, so make sure to invite the right kind of calories too. Switch sugar to low-calorie sweeteners and celebrate through a healthier way.”
But what happens if you do fall off the wagon and stuff yourself silly during the festival? Well, it’s not the end of the world. Don’t hold back on the celebrations, especially with your family and loved ones. The boost of love and warmth is definitely needed during trying times like these. Just go right back to your diet the next day. Don’t let a bad day of eating turns into a bad week or month. You’ve only hit a small bump in your fitness journey, shake it off and start anew! Remember, you only fail if you don’t get up again.