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As we all know that Indian festivals are incomplete without sweets and it is a common for to all of us to get stressed and confused about – “should we eat” or “ not or how much to eat ?” and so on. Most of us have stopped enjoying the festivals because of the constant fear of gaining weight.
Here are some tips to follow during the festivals-
Go for other alternatives of refined sugar.
Organic jaggery, dates, kharik powder or honey are good alternatives but we have to keep n mind that these too come with calories and have to eat in moderation. Also try some sugarfree versions and enjoy the natural sweetness like sugar free kheer, halwa etc.
Choose a healthier option
like dry fruit based sweets or sweets made from dates rather than sweets with refined sugar or deep fried sweets. Eg- have rasgulla (squeezed) rather than gulab jamun.
Control the portion size.
Don’t overindulge in any sweetdishes. Make small size laddus or burfis and stick to having only one at a time. Also kheer, halwa or ice creams can be had in a small bowl and only 1 bowl at a time.
Compensate for the extra calories eaten.
Do not starve or do crash dieting but in the next few days exercise little more or have healthy snacks or early light dinners for few days after the festival is over. Remember to exercise during the festival too to keep burning the extra calories.
Eat the sweets with meals.
Cut down half a roti or little rice in your meal and balance the extra calories from sweets, by doing this you will get the satisfaction of eating the sweet and also compensating for the extra calories.
Nibble on the Prasad.
Take a small bite of laddu or pedha which is offered to the God as Prasad, by doing this you will save considerable amount of calories.
Prasad time schedule matter to the body- as we know there is morning and evening aarti. Have sweets as Prasad in morning aarti as the body can handle it better than evening/ night aarti. It is always preferable to have a slice of fruit or dry fruit for evening aarti.
GANPATI BAPPA MORYA
(Dietician, ONP Hospitals)