Do you have a strong desire for a late-night snack but you are trying to control the temptation to avoid gaining weight? Many people, due to many reasons, feel hungry again after having dinner. It can be due to work shifts, boredom, stress or if you have had a smaller or earlier dinner.
There's a lot of debate about whether or not you should eat after dinner. And, if that's okay, what are the foods to consume at that hour?
Foods that you can binge on late at night.
Berries- Berries are loaded with fibre which helps you feel full, besides they also contain magnesium, a mineral that relaxes nerves and muscles to speed faster.
Peanut Butter Sandwich- Peanut butter contains tryptophan that gets converted in the brain to melatonin to promote sleepiness. And carbohydrates like bread are needed alongside to make tryptophan more available to the brain. Hence peanut butter bread is the perfect pairing for a pre-sleep snack, and nutritious, too.
Whole-Grain Crackers- When you're hungry for something savoury and crunchy at night, then this can come in handy. Make sure they are unsalted to keep overeating at bay.
Carrot and Hummus- If you're craving something crunchy and low-calorie and filling, fresh carrots with hummus can come in handy.
Popcorn- For those who would like to eat something salty and crunchy, we would suggest they binge on popcorn. It's a high-fibre snack that will keep you full until the next meal. Leave off the butter and salt, and replace them with heart-healthy fats like olive oil or fresh herbs. In fact, three cups of air-popped popcorn contain less than 100 calories and roughly 4 grams of fibre, which will help you to feel full.
Nuts- Nuts like walnuts and almonds contain natural melatonin, protein, and magnesium, a modest handful of nuts will satiate appetite and induce sleepiness.
Roasted Grams- Roasted Grams are a crunchy nutrient-dense, low-calorie snack that's high in protein, fibre, vitamins, and minerals, which makes them a healthier alternative to salty snacks like potato chips.
Low-Fat Turmeric Milk- Milk is a rich source of important nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, vitamin B, potassium and Vitamin D. Adding turmeric to milk enables your body to relax. It gives a calming effect to the brain and gives you a perfect good night sleep.
Read More► Should Carbs Be Completely Stopped During Weight Loss?
Negative calorie food refers to those items that consume more energy during their digestion, in comparison to the amount of energy they gives to the body. We can say that the calorie cost of digesting the food would be greater than its energy content.
These foods are typically high in fibre and have a low glycaemic index. Calories are an important component of food and everything we eat has calories. Calories are of two types. One is empty calories which don't have much nutritive value but just has calories and promotes weight gain. Foods with high fibre and water content usually have fewer calories and we need more energy to digest them, these are called negative calorie foods. These foods help to lose weight as they are not only low in calories but also help to burn out more calories than others. Most negative calorie foods are plant-based.
Here we are sharing the following 10 negative calorie foods:
It contains 16 kcal/100g. It is rich in fibre, vitamin A, C and Folate. It is one of the most popular negative food items as most of its calorie value is stored in cellulose. Our body receives very few calories from celery as it is full of undigested fibre.
Colourful berries such as blueberries, strawberries, raspberries typically contain just 32 kcal for a half-cup quantity. Berries are called negative calorie foods because of their low glycaemic index and their protein content. It also contains antioxidants, which protects us from various cancers.
It has 19kcal/100g. Apart from its water content, it is an excellent source of fibre, potassium and vitamin C. Tomatoes also contain lycopene, an antioxidant known to protect us from skin cancer.
They contain 41 kcal/100g. Its vitamin A content is good for the eyes. Carrot fibre content keeps the stomach full for a longer time thus helps in weight loss.
It contains 15 kcal/100g. This vegetable has high water content which is great to satisfy thirst along with providing all the necessary vitamins and minerals. The water content present in cucumbers is great for hydration. Along with quenching thirst, this fruit provides dietary fibre and is good for irritable bowel syndrome and diabetic patients.
It has 30 kcal/100g. Some of the benefits of watermelon rind include a healthy heart, provide hydration and regulation of blood pressure. Additionally, watermelon seeds also have many health benefits starting from the prevention of anaemia to immune-boosting properties. The water content present in watermelon and vitamins A, B6, C along with lycopene act as an immune-boosting food.
It provides 52 kcal/100g. Apple contains a good amount of antioxidants, vitamin C and fibres. Apple's high fibre content helps in weight loss and it also helps to boost cognitive performance. Quercetin, an antioxidant present in apples, is also associated with lowering the risk of type 2 Diabetes.
It contains 34 kcal/100g. Its vitamin A content improves vision. Calcium, Phosphorus, vitamin K content is essential for healthy bone development. Iron and folic acid help to prevent anaemia. Kaempferol, a flavonoid present in broccoli, has anti-inflammatory properties. Broccoli is also rich in Alpha linolenic acid (ALA) which is crucial for brain growth and development.
It contains about 17 kcal/100g. It is packed with many important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This has high fibre content and a low-calorie count. Fibre plays an important role in digestion. Zeaxanthin, present in Zucchini, plays an important role in preventing oxidative stress and improves eye health.
It provides about 15 kcal/100g. Its vitamin C, Calcium, vitamin K, vitamin A content helps in boosting immunity. The fibre content of lettuce helps in weight loss. It is also associated with a healthy heart and maintaining eye health.
Are There Any Side Effects?
There is no evidence that eating negative calorie foods leads to side effects. However, directly eating low amounts of calories is not advised if you are not under the supervision of a dietician. The calorie requirement to reduce weight is individualised. The requirement varies depending on the person's height, weight, BMI, BMR, and physical activity.
These foods can be added to our daily diet as snacks or cooking ingredients. Cucumber, tomatoes, carrots and lettuce can be used in various salads. Berries, apple or watermelon fruit can be used as a mid-morning or evening snack. Broccoli, zucchini or lettuce can be used in various preparations during cooking.
Read More► Should Carbs Be Completely Stopped During Weight Loss?
Travelling calories don't count but it's important to keep yourself in shape. Working out has become more of a lifestyle than any leisure activity. It indeed gets difficult to maintain timely eating habits. But there are always some ways out if you are willing to choose healthily. Dietician and Nutritionist Sakina Mustansir shares few ways to keep a balanced diet:
Try to Eat Homemade Food/Cook Your Own Meal
There is an old saying, "your mood changes when you eat according to the person's mood who made it." Even when you cook unhealthy food it becomes healthy when it's made at home. It's always convenient to carry food from home rather than eating at roadside vendors or unhygienic food. So, try to cook your own meal wherever possible. Also carry munching snacks like nuts, dried fruits, peanut butter sandwiches or whole wheat/multigrain bread sandwiches, protein bars etc.
No amount of soft drinks or hard drinks will subside the need for water in our body. It's always recommended to be hydrated. Research shows when you are dehydrated it results in forced hunger cravings. You confuse hunger with thirst and get sugary food cravings or indulge in binge eating. Do you know? Drinking water before every meal cuts the portion size and you end up intaking fewer calories.
Don't Skip or Avoid Breakfast
Most of the people skip breakfasts on the trip which makes them more lethargic which enables them to follow healthy eating patterns. If you eat a healthy breakfast your body fills up the nutrients and proteins it requires for the day and starves the carvings off. Buffet breakfast is a trap, don't indulge in overeating either. Cater to the energy your body needs at the moment. While travelling, never skip breakfast. Always aim for a good healthy breakfast so as to avoid hunger pangs and binging on unhealthy snacks later during the day. Also carry some uncut fruits or boiled eggs or chickpeas from the breakfast table for later, to keep you energetic for the exploration.
Avoid Alcohol or Sugary Beverages
The calories in beverages are more reactive as compared to the calories in solid food. Being on a vacation doesn't mean your liver is on a vacation as well. Cutting on calories or alcohol fat is more difficult than cutting down the vacation fat. Avoid sodas if that's convenient.
Usually the most authentic local cuisine also happens to be the healthiest. So while traveling, always try the country's authentic cuisine rather than fast food joints and processed foods. This will not only keep you healthy and give you more energy to explore but you will have an opportunity to taste different cuisines and experience their culture.
Don't Stress About Treats
Give yourself a break, don't keep a count on everything you eat. You always end up eating more if you stress about what you eat all the time. Having a healthy relationship with what you eat is important. Plenty of vegetables are healthier than you are aware of.
Any weight you gain while you travel is most likely to be water retention or constipation. You are most likely to reduce this in a span of one week when you're back to your lifestyle. Be diligent with your exercise or walks while travelling.(By N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe)
Read More► Should Carbs Be Completely Stopped During Weight Loss?
Navratri is the festival where nine days of fasting can be observed by a devotee. Many pregnant ladies wish to fast for their religious or personal beliefs. Though it is said that women during pregnancy should be very careful when it comes to fasting because it is not only the mother who needs all the essential nutrients but also the need of the fetus for healthy growth and development.
However, fasting during pregnancy is not as hard as it allows the consumption of various healthy foods at appropriate intervals. But one thing should be remembered by all pregnant ladies that they should not go hungry for long intervals as a baby's nutrition depends on the mother. It is very important to take carbs during pregnancy while fasting. Carbohydrates play a vital role in our growth system. It is an important nutrient source that not only provides energy to muscles and the brain but using the right kind of carbs in the diet can effectively help to provide essential nutrients, build the desired body or accelerate fitness goals.
There are two types of carbs slow and fast carbs which depends on the Glycemic Index ( the rate at which carbs get digested as compared to glucose secretion).
Fast carbs have a high GI and release energy at a much higher pace and get used quickly which makes you feel hungry often and add to weight gain issues. Fast carbs include processed foods such as bread, sugars, starchy vegetables, fruit juices etc.
As compared to this, slow carbs have a low GI and release energy slowly into the body and help to maintain a "satisfied" feeling as your blood sugar levels are maintained.
There are many non-pregnant women who want to shed extra calories. Fasting will be the perfect time to start their fitness journey. To lose weight and stay healthy, the purpose should be to source the right kind of carbs, which release energy slowly and helps you in the long run. Hence, for that, focus on including slow carbs in your diet such as whole grains, seeds and nuts, beans and legumes, vegetables etc. It also tends to be high in fibre.
Should Carbs Be Taken During Fasting?
Although fasting is a very traditional and customary ritual and most people fast for spiritual purification, there is no denying that if you keep yourself nutritionally in check, it can be therapeutic for the body as it can act as a form of detox and keep you healthy as well. So, it is significant to choose the right food while you are on a fast diet to prevent yourself from being deficient in important nutrients as it can make you likely to develop health ailments like weakness, heart problems, skin issues, defective bone growth, etc.
Pregnant women with illnesses such as diabetes, anaemia, high blood pressure should avoid fasting as it could lead to various other complications.
Avoiding carbohydrates will be the last thing you need to do during fasting as it provides energy to the brain and muscles and make you energetic and more productive throughout the day. So, Make sure you are getting enough right kind of carbohydrates, proteins, minerals and vitamins from different sources and be vigilant about selecting healthy foods rather than munch on processed foods.
There are various food options that include slow carbs and few tips to make your fasting healthier:
Because you are fasting, you tend to eat lesser food than usual, and are hungry at odd times, eating slow carbs foods can help you keep fuller for longer as they take longer to digest and break down. Combine high carbohydrates like potatoes and sabudana (widely used in fasting) with other fibrous vegetables like spinach, cabbage, tomatoes, capsicum, bottle guard, etc. Also, try to bake, roast or grill vegetables instead of deep-frying them. Kuttu is a brilliant combination of carbohydrates (70-75 per cent) and protein (20-25 per cent). It is also rich in proteins, B-complex vitamins and minerals like phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper and manganese. Use it to make chapatti instead of gorging on puris.
Samak rice is extremely easy to digest and provides energy, contains a high amount of fibre, B-complex vitamins and important minerals like iron and magnesium.
Try and adopt healthy snacking and don't binge on puris, sabudana vada, potato chips, and other delicacies as they are loaded with sugar, salt and fat content, Instead, opt for roasted makhana as they loaded with antioxidants or a mixture of nuts (almonds/raisins/walnut)/ baked chips, roasted peanuts, etc.)
Eat plenty of seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Eat small meals and do not starve yourself. This will help maintain blood glucose levels and prevent you from feeling low.
Keep yourself hydrated. Drink lots of water and fluids like coconut water, lemon water, and buttermilk without adding sugar. These beverages will keep you satisfied for a long time.
While you can gorge on the above-mentioned food items, also try out these healthy recipes this Navratri season:
Sweet potato chaat
1 bowl (250 gms)
Calories-304.5 Cal Carbs-62.09 gms
2-3 Sweet Potatoes (Boiled)
A handful of almonds, peanuts and walnuts
1 tsp Cumin powder and Black pepper
1 tsp chia seeds and roasted flax seeds
Rock salt for taste
1 lemon (for juice)
Boil sweet potatoes and peel them and cut them into small pieces
Now mix the nuts with sweet potatoes
Now add salt, cumin powder and black pepper to it and mix it properly, add lemon juice also
Sprinkle chia seeds and flax seeds
The chaat is now ready to eat
2 pieces (45 gms)
1 cup Kuttu ka Atta / Buckwheat Flour
1/2 cup Sour Curd
1 /4 tsp Ginger paste
Salt to taste
1 tbsp Fresh Coriander (Grated)
1 tsp Green Chilli (Chopped)
Clean and wash the buckwheat in enough water only once. Then drain the excess water using a strainer
Mix the buckwheat, sour curd and half a cup of water in a bowl. Cover it and soak it for at least 4 to 5 hours.
Now add green chilli, ginger paste and salt to the batter and mix very well
Pour the batter into a greased thali and spread evenly by rotating the thali clockwise. Also, Sprinkle freshly chopped coriander
Steam in a steamer for 10-12 min. Or till the Dhoklas are cooked
Cool slightly, cut into pieces and serve immediately with green chutney.
Read More► All You Need to Know About Gluten Free Grains
Gluten is a family of proteins mainly found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). It contains gliadin and glutenin. The elasticity of dough is because of its gluten content. Gluten gives a chewy texture and desired shape to the product. In some people, gluten causes inflammatory and autoimmune reactions, where it mainly destroys the tissue of the small intestine and gut lining. In human body absorption of nutrients takes place in the small intestine, so in such cases, it is very important to follow a gluten-free diet for good gut health and nutritional status. Now let's know about the two grains which are naturally gluten-free and have many health benefits too:
Millet is one such ancient superfood that gives many health benefits due to its nutritional content. It helps to strengthen the immune system, promote good bone health and aids in weight loss. It contains all potential antioxidants which prevent ageing and metabolic disorders like diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia etc. We know that many diseases occur due to our body's acidic pH. Where a diet rich in alkaline foods are required. So this grain is alkaline in nature, preventing acidity and heartburn issues.
Health Benefits of Millet:
It's a good source of B vitamins like niacin, folate and pantothenic acid. These nutrients help to perform many enzymatic reactions in our body and are also necessary for the normal functioning of the organs.
Millet contains an insoluble fibre known as prebiotics. It supports good bacteria in the gut. Insoluble fibre helps to relieve symptoms like constipation, bloating, gas and cramps etc.
It can be a healthier grain to include in your diet if you want to protect your heart. It contains a good amount of magnesium which helps to control blood pressure. Millets are rich in dietary fibre too (both soluble and insoluble fibre) which makes it a good choice for people who are suffering from high cholesterol levels.
It's low in simple carbs and high in complex carbs (a low GI food) and hence its consumption is good to control sugar levels and aids in weight loss.
Millets are rich in antioxidants and phenols especially ferulic acid and catechins. Antioxidants help in reducing oxidative stress in the body and boost immune functioning. The darker millets contain more antioxidants compared to the lighter ones.
It is one of the nutrient-rich grains for pregnant women as it is rich in iron, protein, antioxidants, dietary fibre, calcium, magnesium, potassium and folate. All those nutrients are required more during pregnancy. Its high iron content improves haemoglobin levels. Dietary fibre prevents constipation and helps to lower blood sugar levels in gestational diabetes. Calcium and folate help in fetus development. Magnesium and potassium manage blood pressure.
And other information for those who are trying to conceive, that this grain can help you. The science behind that is, grains that are high in complex carbs and low in refined carbs prevent a surge in insulin resistance and preserve ovulation. Also, women suffering from PCOD should add this grain to their daily diet. As it helps to cut down the visceral fat, thus regulates the menstrual cycle.
Buckwheat is not a type of wheat, it's a gluten-free grain that comes under the group of cereals commonly called pseudocereals. As it doesn't grow in grass, it's a plant just like quinoa and amaranth. Basically, it is a seed that needs grinding to make its flour. We all include this grain in our diet during fasting days. But do we know its amazing health benefits?
Health Benefits of Buckwheat:
It is more satiating than any other grain due to its power loaded nutrient and complex carbohydrate content. And this helps to reduce weight as it keeps you full for a longer time and prevent you from binge eating.
Iron is very important for our body's normal functioning. Deficiency of this mineral leads to anaemia, weakness and fatigue. Buckwheat is a good source of iron. So make this grain a part of your diet on non-fasting days too.
It is rich in magnesium and calcium, minerals that are required for healthy and stronger bones and teeth, promotes growth and development.
Among the other pseudocereals, buckwheat is a rich source of rutin antioxidants. It contains other antioxidants too like quercetin. Rutin has anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and antioxidant properties. Antioxidants help to remove potentially harmful substances called "free radicals" from our bodies. And thus it boosts immunity.
It's a rich source of plant-based protein, especially contains a good amount of aspartic acid, arginine and lysine amino acids. These amino acids help in the regularization of hormones in the body. Studies show that intake of lysine may reduce anxiety also improves calcium absorption.
Because of its miraculous nutritional content, it can be a superfood for pregnant women. And it's totally safe to have during pregnancy as it has a good amount of folate, iron, magnesium, calcium, dietary fibre and essential amino acids. Folate supplementation is needed during pregnancy or before conception. A diet rich in folate helps to prevent neural birth defects. Also, it contains a higher amount of dietary fibre, including all three fibre soluble, insoluble or resistant starch.
The role of fibre in our body is to delays the metabolism of sugar and to keep the digestive system healthy. So consumption of this seed will keep you at bay from general problems that occur during pregnancy such as constipation, gestational diabetes and high blood pressure. Research says that intake of lysine with iron and vitamin supplements helps to improve hemoglobin levels in pregnant women.
It will be a great choice for women who are planning to conceive, as buckwheat is a good source of folic acid which helps in releasing eggs during ovulation. Also, it contains a rutin antioxidant that promotes the circulatory system in women. Its high fibre content will help to lose weight in PCOD. It has been found in studies that it lower the testosterone levels by which regulates the ovulation process.
Here is one nutritious recipe you can make by using these two grains:
Millet and buckwheat bhel with the goodness of iron and calcium:
Whole millet grain (boiled): ½ bowl
Buckwheat seed (boiled): ½ bowl
Steamed moong, Kala chana sprouts: ½ bowl
Tossed mushroom: ½ bowl
Green apple: ½ bowl chopped
Lemon: as per taste
Salt and pepper: as per taste
Take a pan and boil whole millet grain and buckwheat seed in water on slow flame till it gets transparent. Drain the extra water and take out the boiled seeds in a bowl. Now add steamed moong and Kala chana sprouts. Meanwhile, toss the mushroom in a pan for few minutes. Add chopped green apple and tossed mushroom in a mixture and flavour it with salt, pepper and lemon.
You can enjoy this bhel as a mid between snack or in dinner.
Read More► Is Donkey Milk Good for Your Skin?
Cleopatra, was regarded as a great beauty, to preserve her skin, she took her daily bath in donkey milk. Besides, Hippocrates, the father of medicine, prescribed donkey milk for various diseases including fever, wounds, etc. To add to these benefits, donkey milk has four times the amount of Vitamin C than cow's milk has. So, it's no secret that donkey milk is a powerhouse of nutrients for both the skin and body.
Used for Anti-Ageing and Healing
The milk contains essential fatty acids that work as powerful anti-ageing and healing properties. These fatty acids blur the wrinkles on the skin and help to regenerate damaged skin. Plus, donkey milk also contains anti-bacterial properties which are effective in healing skin irritation and redness.
Antioxidant and Nutrient-Rich
Known as a "natural elixir of youth", donkey milk is packed with antioxidants and nutrients. It contains vitamin E, amino acids, vitamins A, B1, B6, C, E, Omega 3, and 6. These properties together make it a rich ingredient when it comes to skin treatment. Moreover, vitamin D is another important ingredient for human skin, and the primary source to get it is through UV exposure. At the same time, too much of that leaves an adverse effect on the skin. Here is when donkey milk acts as a great substitute as it naturally contains vitamin D. All in all, if this milk is applied frequently, it brings a glowing effect while making the skin look brighter.
Moisturizer and Softener
By now it's a well-known fact that this milk works as a powerful moisturizer for the skin. Besides, if donkey milk is used consistently, it acts as a great cleanser as well as helps in keeping the skin healthy, hydrated, and soft.
Therefore, donkey milk with its healing, nutritional and rejuvenating properties for the skin is rapidly emerging as a key ingredient for skincare. These are also driving several leading players to roll out personal care products such as soap, cream, etc. manufactured using donkey milk. Moreover, the global donkey milk market is expanding rapidly with the market value projected to reach $68,139.0 thousand by 2027, registering a CAGR of 9.4 per cent from 2021 to 2027. And the growing use of donkey milk as an ingredient in cosmetic and personal care products will significantly contribute toward the growth of this market in the years to come.
Read More► Black Foods Are The New Super-Food