Saffola Total – The Right Kind of Cooking Oil for a Healthy Heart.

Saffola Total

Saffola Total

Today many people are suffering from heart related problems. Heart problems are not just for the elderly anymore. Lifestyle disorders like stress, being overweight, consumption of junk food, irregular eating habits, addictions like smoking, drinking and worse add to strain on the heart. We need to understand that heart is a miraculous machine which is working nonstop for us.

We can avoid the life threatening heart conditions by keeping check on our diet. A little change in our lifestyle can make a huge difference to our heart’s health and can increase our lifespan with years. Besides regular workout like walking, cycling or yoga, drinking water and eating low-calorie high-fiber food we should chose the right cooking oil for our day today use.

The cooking oil plays a big role in our daily fat consumption. While choosing the right cooking oil we should keep few basic points in our mind like it should be high in antioxidants and its absorption capacity should be low.

In my search to find the right oil I experimented with different kinds of oils like Olive, Rice Bran, Safflower and finally settled my quest to find the perfect oil with Saffola Total. When it comes to heart healthy cooking oil Saffola has always been a preferred brand among many. Saffola has always given us good quality products and the latest brand of oil Saffola Total has lots of benefits.

3 Reasons why Saffola Total is the right kind of cooking oil for a healthy heart:

1. High Antioxidants:
Saffola Total is high in antioxidants. It has twice as many antioxidants as in olive oil. Antioxidants protect our cells and prevent this cellular damage thereby decreasing the risk of CVD and other diseases. Antioxidants are known to reduce oxidation of LDL (bad cholesterol) thus help maintain a strong heart. Help in mopping bad free radicals and maintaining cell health. Prevent clogging of arteries/ blockage of arteries. Help in keeping our arteries healthy.

2. Low Absorption:
Saffola Total has the added advantage of Losorb Technology. Saffola Total has up to 10% lower absorption capacity as compared to other oils. Based on external lab studies on sunflower oil, soybean, canola (Saffola Total has shown 18% Lower Absorption then soybean oil, 16% Lower Absorption then sunflower oil, 20% Lower Absorption then canola oil).

3. Multiseed Benefits:
Saffola Total is a blend of rice bran oil and safflower oil. It gives us goodness of two oils in one. Furthermore, it is fortified with antioxidants that help fight free radicals and thus maintain the stability of the oil during storage and while cooking at higher temperatures.

“Saffola Total is a special blend of oils with a balance of fatty acids, which is considered suitable not just for the heart but for overall wellbeing. Moreover, the high antioxidant content of this oil makes it the right choice for staying healthy.” Neelanjana Singh (Consultant Nutritionist).

We are already struggling with lack of time and increasing level of stress and we cannot afford to jeopardize our health by not taking care of our diet. Our body does have a daily requirement for fat and good cholesterol (HDL) hence our balance diet should include a healthy amount of right kind of fats.

When we count our daily fat intake we count fats like butter or ghee kind of products that we add on to our meal and forget the cooking oil which is in fact the largest source of our daily fat intake. We avoid outside food because of the unhealthy and burnt oil that is used in most of the eateries but do we use the best available cooking oil for our home cooked meal. I suggest we spend some time to find the best cooking oil for our family’s health. I am happy to suggest using Saffola Total as your daily cooking oil.

    Leave a Comment below or by clicking “Comment” link under the Title of the Post, I Would Love to Know Your Opinion on This.

This blog post was sponsored by Saffola.

5 Ayurvedic Cleanse Recipes to Re-Ignite Your Body’s Digestive Fire

~~M I N T O ~~ F R E S H
5 Ayurvedic Cleanse Recipes to Re-Ignite Your Body’s Digestive Fire J I G I S H A a.k.a Nitin Badhwar / / CC BY-SA

The dawn of New Year brings lots of hopes and promises. First day of every New Year for all of us encourages fresh start and our body very much deserves one. Our body has been constantly working for us and our stomach takes up a lot of strain in the holiday season Durga Puja, Diwali, Thanksgiving, Christmas and the night we test its limits the New Years Eve.

I am not against celebration on the contrary I love all these festivals but from this year I want to help my stomach and entire body unwind and refresh so that it can pass through the coming year stronger and healthier. I am interested to make some changes that will help reduce the body age as we leap in yet another year. How am I going to do this? Two words – Ayurvedic Cleanse.

1. Cleansing Water –

Recipe: 1 Tall Glass of Water, 1 tsp Lemon Juice, 1 tsp Honey, Mix all ingredients together

Have this cleansing water every morning to flush out toxins and removes excess fat.

2. Cleansing Tea –

Recipe: 2 Cups of water, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp fennel seeds, 1 tsp coriander seeds

Boil the seeds together till the water is reduced to 1 cup, strain and have it instead of your morning coffee or tea. If possible have it twice a day.

3. Green Tea –

Add Tulsi Leaves also known as Holy Basil to your green tea after your meals. Tulsi leaves is considered very important in Ayurveda as it has stress hormones reducing properties. It can control stress or lifestyle related disorders.

4. Green Moong Soup

Recipe: Soak Green Moong overnight then pressure cooker it with little oil, 1 onion, 2 chopped green chillies, 1 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, ½ tsp coriander powder, ½ tsp red chilli powder, salt as per taste. Water enough to make thick soup. You can add any vegetables to it or any garnish to keep it interesting.

For deeper cleanse of your body replace all your meals with the healthy and filling Green Moong Soup. Try doing this on the less busy days as this change may make you feel weak. If you feel too weak just have some brown rice or brown bread with your soup. You can be on this cleansing diet for maximum 7 days or just for a day. Go as your body suggests.

If you are pregnant, under heavy medication or have any serious medical condition please take advice of your doctor before trying this or any other diet.

I Ayurvedic centre they do encourage having two tsp of Pure Ghee a day in your soups. Make sure the Ghee or Clarified Butter is pure and made of Cow’s Milk.

5. Moong Dal Khicari:

Recipe: Pressure cooker – 1 tbsp ghee (clarified butter) or sesame/ sunflower oil, 2 bay leaves, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp fennel seeds, 1 tsp mustard seeds, turmeric, fresh grated ginger root (optional), Rock salt as required, 2 pinches hing/ asafetida, 1 cup rice, 1 cup split mung dal (yellow or green, or whole mung beans soaked overnight), 4 cups water.
Add vegetables if you prefer.

This light Khicari if made watery enough for your stomach is like spending a day in the spa. It can give your stomach the much needed rest and can help it wind down and refresh. After your Green Moong Soup Diet days you can get your stomach back to regular foods by replacing your meals with this Khicari for a day or two.

Extra Tips:

1. To flush out toxins have as many healthy liquids like buttermilk, water, green teas, fruits and vegetables juices. Take these in large quantities and avoid coffee, tea and sugary sodas.

2. Go for light exercise like walking or any other workouts during your cleansing days.

3. Try to Meditate or Visualize Positve thoughts in the morning and through out the day.

4. You will find it very relaxing to get an Ayurvedic Sesame Oil Massage during cleansing days.

Happy New Year and Thank you for all the love and encouragement you guys have shwon to The Vibrant Writer Blog. May this New Year bring you more of Health, Wealth and Happiness.

6 Super Foods for Weight Loss and Much More

As promised in my last post this article is a list of superfoods that are helping me to get close to my healthy weight without starving.

6 Super Foods for Weight Loss and Much More

6 Super Foods for Weight Loss and Much More

My post Green Gram or Green Moong: A Superfood for Weight Loss and Much More is one of the most read posts on this blog and that inspired me to find out more super foods that can help us slim down in a healthy way.

1. Sprouts (Green Gram, Mat Beans, Green/Black Chickpeas): If you have read my post on Green Gram then you will know why I love this nutrition packed little wonder. Lately I have found a way to make my almost daily Green Gram Soup more nutritious and filling. I just add more healthy beans like soaked or sprouted Black/ Green Chickpeas and/or Moth Beans/ Mat Beans/ Matki.

Recipe: Soak Green Moong, Mat Beans, Green/Black Chickpeas overnight (Sprout them for additional nutrition).
Pressure cooker it with little oil, 1 onion, 2 chopped green chillies, 1 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, ½ tsp coriander powder, ½ tsp red chilli powder, salt as per taste. Water enough to make thick soup.

As if that was not healthy enough I threw in a small bunch of fresh spinach in it. I did not even cut the leaves just washed and added it to my soup. You can add dry Fenugreek Leaves (Kasuri Methi) or its fresh version. Fresh Coriander leaves and some vegetables like cabbage, bitter gourd, bottle gourd, carrots or any vegetable that you would love to taste in this healthy soup. This soup will keep you full while improving you metabolic rate. The good bacteria will perk up your digestion.

2. Nuts: People trying to lose weight avoid nuts assuming they are fattening. The nuts like walnuts, almonds, pine nuts even the humble peanuts are loaded with the good fat that our body actually needs even when we are trying to lose weight. Nuts (not more than a handful) are good snacking option as they are high in protein and they make us feel full. Ayurvedic doctors suggest having overnight soaked almonds first thing in the morning to ignite our fat burning fire. Now isn’t that a delicious way to lose weight.

3. Apples: I love all fruits but apples are one of my favorites. I can never resist a big juicy red apple and that is not a bad thing unless you are Snow White. Like nuts apples are also the perfect snack. Apples are loaded with soluble fibers called pectin. Pectin reduces the amount of sugar and calories that’s absorbed into the bloodstream. It reduces cravings and prevents spikes in blood sugar that leads to fat storage. I don’t understand people who peal of apples and eat only the white part. All the goodness is in the beautiful colored skin please don’t throw away the nourishment. It’s a crime against nature. Just wash it nicely if you are worried about pesticides and sink your teeth in.

4. Vegetable Soup: This is another healthy and filling soup option which you can use to replace you meal. This soup is much lighter and watery compared to the thick and creamy sprouts soup mentioned below. Light vegetable soup meal can be a good option if you feel bloated from last night’s heavy meal. For lunch or dinner have a big bowl of soup made of vegetables like Bottle gourd, Cabbage, Bitter Gourd, Carrots, Tomatoes and any vegetables you like. Do not add thickening agents like corn flour or any other soup mix to this soup. It will help you flush out toxins and fat from your body only when it is light and watery.

Recipe: Cut vegetables in big cubes,
If you like your soup spicy add some green chilies,
Pressure cooker them with enough water to make light soup (1 or 2 whistles maximum),
Add salt, pepper powder and any other seasoning as per your liking,
Smash the vegetables and have the soup.

5. Red Lentils: The Red Lentils or Masoor Dal is rich in protein and loaded with fiber. They help us stay full for a longer time. Just one cup of this rich legume provides about three-quarters of our daily recommendation of fiber. Like the sprouts soup you can add vegetables like spinach, bottle gourd, pumpkin, drumsticks, dry fenugreek leaves, or any other vegetable in this rich thick dal and trick your loved ones to eat their vegetables. Well that’s what I have started to do with my husband.

6. Watermelon: Another fruit that I can crown as one of my favorites. Watermelon is a delicious fruit that also contains ‘glutathione’ that strengthen the immune system. It is a rich source of the vitamin B complex, vitamin C, beta carotene and folic acid. It is a natural Diuretic that helps reduce edema. A filling big bowl of freshly cubed water melon can be a good snack option and it has negligible calories.

So don’t starve yourself eat healthy, eat at regular intervals and maintain a cutoff time. Drink a lot of water and sleep well. These foods work for me but I would insist you take advice of your doctor before making any drastic changes in your diet.

    Leave a Comment below or by clicking “Comment” link under the Title of the Post, I Would Love to Know Your Opinion on This.

That’s Why I Don’t Starve In The Name Of Diet (Anymore).

“I never worry about diets. The only carrots that interest me are the number you get in a diamond.” — Mae West

That’s Why I Don’t Starve In The Name Of Diet (Anymore).

That’s Why I Don’t Starve In The Name Of Diet (Anymore).

In the posts “5 Questions You Should Answer Before Going on Any Diet.” and “What keeps a Person Fat? Find out the Real Reason behind your Flab?” we discussed how frustrating and confusing weight loss and diets are. I always feel this topic needs a lot of discussion because I interact with many young girls who are repeatedly doing the same mistakes. They brutally starve their body and pop pills to cure number of complications they create because of their so call diet.

I actually hate the word diet; the first letters scream out ‘DIE’ and that is sign enough for me to stay away from this evil confusion. I don’t want to say that we should eat unhealthy junk. All I want to say is get professional help. Talk to some expert about your medical conditions. Get yourself thoroughly checked and eat sensibly. Finding fitness is making one’s lifestyle healthy and has nothing to do with starving to death.

“And anyway, the first three letters in the word diet should tell you what I want it to do.” — Becca Fitzpatrick

I never trust meal replacements. If you can’t eat the replacement for rest of your life then why start it and put your body through a frustrating phase. Eat balanced meals so that you get all the required nourishment from food and not any pills. Sleep well as sleep deprivation is one of the biggest contributors to weight gain.

I am guilty of putting my body through disappointing diets and starvation in the past. I did that because back then I did not know better and I acted on advice from anyone and everyone. I ate next to nothing and worked out like I was going to take part in the Olympics. I checked my weight every day and was getting very upset as I was not getting desired results. I was maintaining a spreadsheet with my weight, measurements and targets I want to achieve in specific time limit. Irregular eating patterns and extreme changes in diet just confused my body to store more and more fat.

“Every weight loss program, no matter how positively it’s packaged, whispers to you that you’re not right. You’re not good enough. You’re unacceptable and you need to be fixed.” — Kim Brittingham

I would not see results because my body was not in sync with me and my strategies. Our bodies do not understand spreadsheets and celebrity diets as its instincts are still pretty primitive. Our body still holds down to the centuries old survival instinct. This survival instinct is a gift to us from evolution and as it names suggests it does help us survive when disaster strikes.

When we make meal plans to reduce our calorie intake, the survival instinct kicks in and our body feels it is going in starvation mode. For the body this is a serious scenario and it starts preparing for the famine. That is exactly what we start doing when we suddenly jump into extreme diets. We give signal to our body that there is a famine coming. The body starts storing everything we eat to survive the artificial famine that we created.

“The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook.” — Julia Child

I believe I have turned you against starving in the name of dieting and that’s just have of the story. In my next post I will mention a list of foods that are super healthy, nutritious and filling. That means you can enjoy them guilt free. I want to write as many articles as possible on weight loss and fitness in the next month. I am dedicating December to fitness so that we can get rid of unhealthy eating patterns and habits and turn a new corner in 2014, a path that will take us to healthy and happy living.

    Leave a Comment below or by clicking “Comment” link under the Title of the Post, I Would Love to Know Your Opinion on This.

5 Questions You Should Answer Before Going On Any Diet.

creating a balanced meal- food group plate- healthy nutrition meal planner plate
5 questions you should answer before going on any dietnutrition education / / CC BY-ND

Diets are hard. When someone chalks down can eat or can’t eat it gets very frustrating for me and all I want to do at that moment is to switch the list. After abusing my body through lots of failed diets and fast weight loss remedies I learnt a very valuable lesson that losing weight is not a sprint but a marathon. It is not a temporary change but a complete lifestyle alteration hence we have to find the healthiest and safest fit.

A famous quote by Cher says it all; “If you could bottle it, everyone would have one!” Unfortunately fitness or health does not come in a bottle and no matter who you are you have to bust your butt to get in shape.

When I hear about a diet success story I first congratulate the person and then take as many details about it as possible. Then I research about it by reading all the reviews that I can find and there are always many and if possible try to take some professional advice on it from a nutritionist or doctor.

After all this mental workout I try to give an honest answer to following 5 questions without getting emotional about the whole idea of weight loss.

1. How long are you going to stick with the diet?
If your answer is till I drop few pounds or till I fit in that dress or till I go to that event or vacation or anything similar. I am sorry to say but all these answers are wrong. The only right answer for most of the diet will be “forever”. Allow me to explain our body has got used to a particular habit of eating that got us where we are today. Suddenly when we get excited about a diet and try it out our body goes in some kind of shock and it takes time to adjust to this drastic change. If we stick with the diet the body responses positively and we start getting the results we desire but if we stop following the diet and get back to our old eating habits the body get confused and this time it starts storing fat rapidly as a survival instinct. As a result we bounce back to our original weight and most of the time we gain more than that.

2. Does the diet include all food groups?
A truly healthy diet includes all the food groups — vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and low-fat dairy and healthy fats along with lean protein. Your body needs the nutrients these foods provide. If your diet fails to give you required nutrition you may create complications that are far harsh that being overweight.

3. Is this diet right for me?
This may be perfect for your friend but will it work for you. Can you commit to this lifestyle. Be honest only you know the right answer.

4. Can this diet cause any harm or side effect in long term?
If you just gain back the weight you lost and not any other health issues you should consider yourself lucky. One should be very well aware about the consequences of a fad diet. Study the plan in detail before jumping in.

5. Am I mentally prepared for the commitment of this diet plan?
As diet is a serious lifestyle change it is very important to be ready for it. If you are confident that you found the right diet then go ahead with a positive mental attitude and a clear goal or vision about the desired result. This will help you when things get difficult.

Good Luck let me know about your experiences in the weight loss journey. We all can learn from each other.

    Leave a Comment below or by clicking “Comment” link under the Title of the Post, I Would Love to Know Your Opinion on This.