Diet Plan – A healthy diet is a key to lose weight. Lifelong healthy eating habits along with exercise routine are necessary to maintain a good weight. It is advised to lose weight gradually so that it stays off. Shedding weight too fast leads to muscle and bone loss along with water instead of fat.
According to Ayurveda, an excess of Kapha dosha leads to obesity or being overweight.
Reasons for weight gain:
Too much or too little sleep is directly linked to weight gain. This impacts the hormone production in the body that controls the appetite and hunger.
Too much gap between meals slows down the metabolism and the body isn’t able to burn off all the calories. One feels hungry or starved and tends to overeat.
Eating out in restaurants leads to weight gain as a small portion served there have more calories than home-cooked food.
Stationary or sedentary jobs often lead to weight gain as your body isn’t able to know how much you have eaten, thus leading to overeating.
Stress often leads to weight gain. In a tensed situation, one feels tempted to take unhealthy, high-calorie snack even when you are not hungry. This leads to quick weight gain.
Underactive thyroid gland (making less hormone ) leads to weight gain. This hormone controls the energy levels and helps the body break down food. One feels bloated due to water and salt retention in the body.
Some medicines may cause weight gains like steroids and antihistamines. They change the metabolism and make one feel more hungry.
Being overweight can also be a genetic problem in some cases.
Women often gain weight around menopause due to change in hormones.
Ways to lose weight:
At least 6-8 cups of water daily can help lose weight easily. Water has zero calories so it doesn’t lead to weight gain as other sweetened drinks do. Avoid high sugar sports drinks and protein bars as they are full of calories. Prefer unsweetened tea or coffee, lemon water.
It is recommended to eat small portions of meals as often as possible. This improves the metabolism and stops overeating.
Keep alcohol intake in control. One glass of wine with dinner is good but taking 3 or more drinks add extra calories.
One needs to avoid fast foods and sugary snacks in order to lose weight as they are low in fiber and don’t make you feel full.
A good diet includes whole foods like fruits like raspberries, vegetables like broccoli, lima beans, lentils peas, artichokes, grains and proteins like nuts, beans, soy. Processed food should be avoided as processing takes away fiber, iron, and essential vitamins.
One needs to eat food according to the season eg during summers one needs to eat high carbohydrate fruits and vegetables to keep cool while during winters one needs nuts, seeds meat, cheese to insulate from cold. During spring, it is advised to eat berries and sprouts.
Kapha pacifying diet best to lose weight.
It is advised to go for foods that are bitter, pungent and astringent in taste rather than the ones that are sweet, salty or sour. Bitter foods detoxify the body, It improves the senses of taste, tones the skin and muscles, improves appetite and helps to absorb moisture, lymph, muscle fat, adipose tissue. This includes bitter greens like kale, dandelion greens, bitter melon, eggplants and dark chocolate. Astringent foods create a drying sensation in the mouth, tone the body tissues, reduce heat and pacify inflammation. This includes legumes like soya beans, pinto beans and vegetables like cauliflower, lettuce, broccoli. Pungent foods clear the sinuses and stimulate body’s metabolism. It liquifies secretions, encourages sweating and thins the blood.
Pungent is spicy, hot flavors like with chilies, radishes, turnips, raw onions
It is very important to read food labels to know how many calories are in a serving.
Low glycemic index diet and low carbohydrate diet is helpful in losing weight.
Small amounts of fat are helpful in keeping one feel full eg in fish, nuts, seeds, olive oil and coconut oil.
It is advised to drink a glass of warm water with the lemon first thing in the morning to boost the digestive system.
Drinking sips of hot water or tea throughout the day helps in dissolving Ama or toxins.
Fresh ginger can be added to this water.
The frequency with which one drinks this water is more important than the amount.
Few sips every hour give the best result.
It is recommended to take light dinners, something that is easily digested and must be taken 2 hours before bedtime. To maximize digestion, one needs to eat a larger meal during noon as the digestive fire is strongest around noon.
Exercises that help to lose weight:
One needs to create an exercise schedule and stick to it in order to lose weight. It is very important to stay active all day.