mummiefbDr. Sarita Bhargava – Pediatrician.
Qualified PALS by Indian Academy of Pediatrics.
Author of a very popular book ‘Your Precious Gem & You’.

Since a long time we have been convinced by medical research literature that cholesterol and fats are the culprits for causing obesity and heart disease. Obesity is a medical condition in which the person is overweight due to excessive accumulation of fat. This excessive fat has negative effects on health of a person and leads to decreased life expectancy and makes the person more prone to health problems. Obesity leads to insulin resistance ,high blood pressure and ultimately to heart disease.

yoga_2673262bOur minds need to be refreshed by the fact that cholesterol and saturated fats like ghee have been removed from the list of bad food substances that cause heart disease. In fact cholesterol is an important nutrient that is essential for the cell membranes, making of hormones like cortisol and progesterone. It helps in producing bile salts that help in digesting fats ,and its most important task is its conversion into vitamin D when the skin is exposed to sunlight. Researchers have concluded that there is insufficient evidence to blame the dietary saturated fats for causing heart disease or strokes. They have found that insulin resistance and inflammation are the two main factors responsible for causing chronic diseases in addition to the genetic element. A strong family history of Diabetes Mellitus and Heart Disease is an alarm for the family members to improve their lifestyle .

It has been found that insulin resistance and inflammation can be dealt with by altering our dietary pattern and adopting some lifestyle changes. To mention a few are as below—

  1. Click to BuyReducing intake of carbohydrates-Excessive intake of carbohydrates raises the blood sugar and the high levels of blood sugar initiate a chain of reactions ultimately ending on producing inflammation .  This inflammatory process has been linked with a number of diseases as Alzeimer’s, cancer and advanced aging.
  2. Exercise—Exercise and workouts help in utilizing the carbohydrates  and lipids in body. You should  start with strolling and walking. Gradually increase the number of steps to 5000- 10000 per day . Strenuous exercise is not advised as it may trigger inflammation.
  3. Reduce Stress—We hear people saying that” I am not under stress ,” but this is not possible in today’s scenario . Stress can occur at any age and may be at any place . It can be at home, at work place or on way. Your job , family , finances or any other factor can bring stress in life. One has to try and reduce stress in their lives. Stress is itself responsible for causing inflammation.
  4. Antioxidants—You should take diet rich in antioxidants as they help in controlling inflammation. Foods rich in antioxidants are vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds ,fish, healthy fats  as virgin coconut oil , extra virgin olive oil ,dark roasted sesame oil, ghee and butter which are organic and grass fed.

healthy-indian-diet-plan-weight-gain-2For a long time to reduce weight people have been advised low fat crash diets which have worked temporarily . When fat is reduced the bulk of diet consists of carbohydrates .These extra carbs again put on the weight. If low lipid diets were a cure for obesity in our country the incidence of obesity would have been low due to the prevailing economic conditions.In Indian diets carbohydrates are consumed maximally due to their lower costs as compared to cost of proteins and fats. Improvement in weight reduction has been seen once the lifestyle changes and dietary components are adopted. Avoid soda, avoid fast foods , avoid excessive sugars as fructose corn syrup and those substances which raise the blood sugar levels fast as all refined grains , processed foods, rice , fried  potato .Include exercise in your daily routine life schedule. This should be a must for every one .

diet-fruitsPeople need to know that decreasing sugar intake, decreasing carbohydrates in diet and avoiding trans fats as in fast foods, biscuits,chocolates ,cheese, ready to eat snacks , toasts are the key factors for attaining the goal of reducing weight instead of cutting on the dietary cholesterol and saturated fats. It has been clearly established that cholesterol intake does not play a major role in increasing blood cholesterol levels as 80% of cholesterol is made in the liver and intestine irrespective of the amount of intake in diet.

A very important advice to the consumer is to see the ingredients of the packed food articles specially for sugar and trans fats . All packets showing any amount of trans fats should not be eaten.