5 Immunity Boosting Indian Foods You Should Try

The New Year, 2021 is finally here and most of us would be probably planning to take up some new year resolutions. It is no surprise that the resolutions of so many people are related to eating smart and eating healthily. Eating less junk food and avoiding overeating are usually two of the most common food related resolutions. However, if you are planning to eat healthily, it is important to include immunity boosting Indian foods in your diet. 

Including immunity boosting and healthy food in your daily diet will make you feel good, healthy, and it will make your immune system strong. This will in turn help you to stay away from diseases. So, you might be probably wondering what are the immunity boosting Indian foods that I can easily find. Here are a few immunity boosting food suggestions to help you get started. 

Indian Gooseberry 

Indian Gooseberry, which is popularly known as Amla is a superfood that is rich in healthy vitamins and nutrients. In fact, Amla is one of the richest Vitamin C sources. Vitamin C has the ability to boost immunity. The amount of Vitamin C in Amla is more than 20 times when compared to that of Orange. 

Amla also helps in cleansing the colon, which will result in the removal of excess toxins from the body. In addition to that, Amla is quite effective when it comes to a number of skin related issues. So, it would be a good idea to include Amla in your diet. 

Ghee

Many of you might be surprised to see Ghee in the list of immunity boosting Indian foods. This is mainly because there is a common misconception that clarified butter or Ghee is fattening. However, ghee is one of the healthiest Indian super foods available out there and it is something you should definitely include on your daily diet. 

Ghee is packed with Omega 3 and Omega 9 fatty acids, Vitamin A, B, and C. It is also a healthy source of butyrate and healthy fat. Pure ghee that cow gives also generate both energy and heat in our body, which will keep you warm. Including ghee in your diet will also help your digestive health in many ways. 

Immunity Boosting Indian Foods

Whole-Grain 

Whole-grain is another easily available and affordable Immunity boosting indian food. Most of us indulge in unhealthy foods and festive treats in the month of december and start putting on weight. These festive treats do not help you when it comes to providing nutrients in your body. This is where whole-grain comes into play. 

Whole-grains like pearl millet, bajra, and maize are rich in iron, protein, fiber, and starch. As a result, whole-grains are capable of giving your immunity system a boost along with helping you lose weight and increase good cholesterol levels in your body. 

Tulsi Leaves 

Tulsi leaves offer plenty of health benefits. In fact, the health benefits of tulsi leaves have been vouched by both science and Ayurveda. The green tulsi leaves are available in most Indian households, but most people are not aware about the immunity boosting properties of tulsi leaves. 

The expectorant, antitussive, and immunomodulatory properties of tulsi leaves will help in immunity boosting along with keeping your lungs clean. Having tea in the evening with Tulsi leaves or simply chewing them in the morning before having breakfast will surely keep you healthy. 

Honey 

Honey, the sweetening agent of nature, is rich in magnesium, calcium, and iron. Additionally, raw honey has a number of medicinal properties. For instance, the antibacterial properties of honey soothe our throat and it also protects us from fungi and bacteria. Including honey in your daily diet will also boost the immunity system. 

If you are someone who loves to cook & eat sweet food items, it is best to replace the refined sugar with honey. Refined sugar doesn’t have any nutrients and is not healthy so it is best to replace it with honey. Mixing honey in water and drinking it daily will also aid in weight loss. 

It may be quite difficult for you to include all these immunity boosting Indian foods in your diet when you are leading a busy life. Stil, you gotta find ways to eat healthy and eat smart. If you are wondering how to do that without cooking at home, take a look at our Smart Carbs plan, which has yummy but guilt-free meals that will help you eat healthily.

How To Eat Healthy During Christmas

Sticking to a balanced diet and eating healthy may seem quite challenging during the holiday season and festivals. As Christmas and New year are just around the corner, most of us will be attending parties and enjoying delicious feasts. It is true that most of us tend to overeat during this time of the year and we also treat ourselves to Christmas cakes, cookies, and other Christmas delights.

We do realize that it will be really difficult to not indulge in tasty Christmas treats. However, if you end up overeating, you will put on more weight, which will negatively impact your weight loss goals. So, it is important to know how to eat healthy during Christmas and the rest of the Holiday season.

Since New year is coming up, we tell ourselves that I will start eating healthy and take it up as a New Year Resolution. It is an excellent idea, but that doesn’t mean you should overeat during Christmas. So, here are a few simple tips and tricks that will help you to eat smartly and healthily during Christmas.

Try Not To Overdo It

2020 has been a tough year and it’s finally coming to an end. Christmas is a time to have fun, relax, and spend quality time with your near and dear ones. So, do not put yourself on more stress by saying no to your favorite foods. Some people who are on diet even say not to Christmas cakes and they end up craving it badly a day later.

It is okay to have one or two slices of the Christmas cake, enjoy a few Christmas cookies, and eat the food you love. However, you need to have a control on how much you are eating. This will help you to stay healthy along with enjoying a few delicious Christmas treats.

 Eat Healthy During Christmas

Eat Less When You Can

Christmas dinner is one of the best parts of the festival and it is something we all look forward to. So, eating less during the Christmas dinner will be probably something we don’t want to do. It is important to realize that a Christmas dinner or one-off celebration meal may not make a huge difference to your healthy eating plan.

The trick is to limit the celebration meals to either one or two. And, if possible you should try to eat less during your other meals. This will allow you to keep control of your daily calorie intake without skipping the Christmas dinner.

Choose Healthier Options

If you are at home, you can easily prepare healthy meals with fresh ingredients. You need to make a few smart options like avoiding processed and red meat with chicken, turkey, or fish. You should also include more vegetables and food that are high in protein in your diet.

Since it’s Christmas, you will be probably planning to dine out with friends or family. If that’s the case, make sure to pick healthier options instead of filling the plate with your favorite food items. If you want to have a dessert, it is best to opt for fruit-based desserts.

Cut Down On Drinks

There is no denying that Christmas and New Year are days when we drink more than usual. In fact, most of us tend to drink more during the month of December. People who are drinking at home often end up losing count, which is why you should drink responsibly and have better control.

Some people tend to skip or avoid meals to drink more alcohol. This is a bad idea, as skipping meals will make you feel weak because you do not have enough nutrition. So, do not skip meals, instead drink less, and have control on how much you are drinking.

Conclusion

Christmas is one of the best and most interesting times of the year and it can be quite hard to stick with a healthy diet during the season. That said, you can always have a cheat day during the Christmas week or on the Christmas day itself. If you are at home, you can easily prepare healthy meals. However, if you are not at home and still want healthy home cooked meals for Christmas, we can help you get it delivered to your doorsteps.

Why You Should Track What You Are Eating

Several individuals who are trying to lose weight often fail to realize one important thing. It is that tracking what you are eating can help you with your weight loss journey in many ways. In fact, multiple studies have revealed that people who track their daily food intake online tend to lose weight faster. So, if you wish to lose weight, it is best to track what you eat. 

Surprisingly, several people feel that tracking what they are eating and noting it is a tedious task. However, the reality is that there are several apps that will allow you to keep track of what you are eating. This means that it will take you only a few seconds to document and track your daily food intake. If you are still wondering why you should keep track of what you are eating, here are a few reasons that will give you a better idea. 

Increase Mindfulness

Do you remember what you had for lunch last day or what you ate for dinner last night. Some of us often forget what we are eating due to our busy life or other reasons. It is always good to have a clear idea on what you are eating on a daily basis. 

Keeping track of what you are eating will surely increase mindfulness. You will be mindful of your daily eating habit and you may end up cutting down on junk and sugary food items. 

Track What You Eat

Gives You A Clear Idea Of Your Current Eating Habits

Some people do not realize they are overeating while others fail to notice that they are consuming more junk or sugary food. If you are seriously trying to lose weight, you should have a clear idea on how much calories you are consuming on a day. Tracking helps you to understand how much you are eating on a daily basis. 

In addition, you will also realize the calorie content in the food items that you are eating. This may encourage you to choose healthier and better food options, which will help you with your weight loss goals. 

Helps You Understand How Nutrient Dense Your Food Is 

One of the best things about keeping track of your daily food intake is that you will be able to get an idea on what you need to meet your nutritional needs. You will soon realize that you should skip the couple of crunchy and spicy samosas that you are eating with your tea. This is because eating those samosas will result in exceeding the daily calorie intake. 

Chocolate, cake, and ladoo are favorite desserts of many of us, and we often eat them daily. However, when you are tracking what you are eating, you will learn that you need to stop eating them and look for healthier alternatives.

Daily Calorie Limit

Several studies claim that an adult woman should eat 1600 to 2400 calories on a daily basis. Likewise, adult men are advised to eat approximately 2000 to 3000 calories per day. When you are trying to lose weight, your fitness coach may advise you to limit the calorie intake by 1500 or 1800 (based on your current weight. 

If you are not keeping track of what you are eating, you may exceed the limit on most days. This will negatively affect your weight loss goals. Fortunately, you will be able to stay well within the daily calorie intake by tracking your meals. 

Helps You To Understand The Progress

There is no denying the fact that making changes to food and diet habits is hard. In fact, it can be quite challenging and tedious when you are switching diet habits to lose weight. You will get hungry and you may be tempted to overeat at times. 

That said, if you are able to make considerable changes to your diet and food habits, you deserve praise. One of the fascinating aspects of tracking food is that it will help you understand your progress. The effort that you put in will surely give you the motivation to move forward. 

Bottom Line

If you are trying to switch to a healthier diet or want to start eating healthy, you should track what you eat. We understand that many of us may not be able to cook healthy meals at home due to our busy schedules. This is why we have introduced a guilt free meal plan, Smart Carbs. The meal plan will help you easily keep track of what you eat and offer you tasty guilt-free meals. 

How Not To Starve Yourself When You Are On A Diet

Switching to a balanced & healthy diet and exercises regularly is sure to help you lose weight. However, several individuals have a misconception that starving themselves and overtraining will result in faster weight loss. Unfortunately, starving yourself and overtraining may slow down the progress. So, if you are serious about weight, you should avoid these two methods and focus more on how to eat when dieting. 

It is important to eat food that is rich in proteins and nutrients on a daily basis. This will provide sufficient amounts of nutrients into your body and keep you healthy & safe. So, here are a few more reasons that will give you a clear idea on why you should not starve yourself when you are on a diet to lose weight . 

Why You Shouldn’t Starve Yourself

Experts in the field of healthcare have advised and stressed several times that starving is a bad idea. A very recent study revealed a shocking conclusion that starving actually results in the death of certain cells in the body. The death of these cells, which happens due to lack of nutrients and glucose may also negatively affect immunity.

The study also pointed out that cell death due to starvation is quite similar to cell-death treatments like chemotherapy. Several other studies have found out that prolonged starvation may result in organ damage. 

Going on a diet, where you are starving yourself is also sure to cause great loss in water weight and muscle mass. This will in turn slow down the rate of metabolism, which will make you feel hungry. As a result, you may end up overeating and putting up more weight.

How To Eat When Dieting

Common Symptoms You May Experience When Starving Yourself

Starving yourself can take a great toll on not just your physical health, but also on your mental health. In fact, you may experience frequent and rapid mood changes, difficulty to sleep, a higher level of stress, and more. In addition, prolonged starvation may also make you feel depressed. 

When it comes to physical health, starving yourself to lose weight will give you frequent headaches, constipation, and it may also lower your blood pressure. The good news is that you will be able to stay away from all these issues by switching to a healthy diet. 

Opt For Healthy Alternatives

Most people who try to include healthy alternatives in their daily diet are more likely to lose weight. In fact, these groups of individuals will lose weight at a faster pace when compared to the ones who are starving themselves. So, make sure to include healthy food items in your diet instead of eating less or starving yourself. 

It would be best to cut down sugar from your daily diet to help you with your weight loss journey. Another important thing to note is that you should be realistic with your weight-loss goals. Try not to avoid your favorite food items, instead start eating healthy and smart. You could also include a cheat day once or twice every week. 

How To Eat When Dieting

As mentioned earlier, avoiding the practice of starving yourself when on a diet is the first thing to do.  In addition to that, here are a few more tips on how to eat when dieting that will surely help you. 

Healthy snacks and food items that are rich in proteins and nutrients must be included in your diet. These food items will give your body the energy it needs and makes you feel full and satisfied. When you are feeling hungry, eat peanuts, almonds, and other healthy snacks. 

The art of practicing mindful eating is another simple but effective way that can help you to lose weight. Having control over what you are eating by resisting your temptation of foods that will make you gain weight is crucial. These small changes will prove to be quite effective when trying to lose weight. 

Subscribe To A Healthy Diet Plan

It can be quite hard for some people to prepare healthy meals every day. Stressful work schedules and busy lives can get in our way. This is why we have introduced a healthy meal plan, Smart Carbs that will ensure a guilt-free eating experience. You do not need to compromise on taste to lose weight. Instead, you need to start eating smart & healthy, this is where our Smart Carbs plan comes into play. 

How To Eat Healthy During Diwali

The festival of Lights, Diwali is almost here. The festival celebration marks the beginning of endless celebrations, sweet & gift exchange, and late-night parties featuring irresistible food. We all get tempted when we get a glimpse of the delicious looking Diwali sweets and crunchy Diwali snacks. No matter how hard we try to avoid these Diwali delights, most of us find it really hard to stay in control.

In fact, a few words of persuasion from family or friends is enough to get us to eat these delicious sweets and snacks. However, no one can blame you for enjoying Diwali delights, but it is important to have a control on what you are eating. This will help you to avoid overeating and gaining a few pounds. Here are a few more tips and suggestions on how to eat healthy during Diwali. 

Eat Healthy During Diwali

Eat Homemade Sweets 

One of the simple tricks that can help you cut down the intake of large amounts of calories is to eat homemade sweets. Buying sweets from shops or markets may seem like the easiest thing you can do. However, you won’t be able to know what ingredients are used in the sweets. This is why it is better to prepare homemade sweets and snacks. 

You will be able to limit the use of oil, ghee, sugar, and other ingredients when you are preparing sweets at home. Fortunately, there are plenty of Diwali sweets recipes that you can easily prepare at home with a handful of ingredients. 

Avoid Fried Snacks And Other Foods From Shops

We all have the tendency to try fried snacks and other fried foods from shops. This is something you should try to avoid if you are trying not to gain weight during Diwali. Moreover, several shops often reuse the same oil to prepare snacks, which is unhealthy. The reuse of oil may result in the creation of free radicals that can cause severe harm to your body. 

The good news is that making snacks at home will help you to eat and stay healthy. In fact, you will also be able to have a better control on what you are eating. Here are some of the best and easy to prepare Diwali snacks that you should check out. 

Stay Hydrated

It is important to drink water regularly to keep yourself hydrated. If you are someone who drinks fizzy cold drinks, then it will surely leave you dehydrated and it may also increase your calorie intake. Water has the ability to clear toxic chemicals and uric acids from your body. 

If the uric acid level in your body is high, you will start craving for sweets and sugary delights. Lemon or buttermilk juice will help you to keep the uric acid level in control. Also, you should consider avoiding alcohol if you are seriously trying to lose weight. 

Try Not To Skip Meals

Diwali is a busy time and the excitement can often get in way of our eating schedules too. Most of us often end up skipping meals while others save up for delicious Diwali treats when attending a party. Skipping meals will only make things worse. In fact, you will be really hungry and may end up eating a lot more. 

Opt For Healthier Alternatives

It is best to eat on time and avoid skipping meals if you want to stay healthy during the Diwali season. One of the major advantages of eating meals on time is that it will make your stomach full. As a result, your brain will give you the signal on not to eat more. 

It is true that Diwali is the time to enjoy traditional snacks and sweets. However, it would be really good if you can switch to healthier alternatives like dry nuts and fruits. You will be able to cut down the intake of several calories if you choose nuts, fruits, cashews, almonds, and figs instead of sweets. 

You can surely enjoy a couple of traditional Diwali delights. However, if you are able to limit them to one or two, you will be able to meet your fitness related goals. Do not deprive you off your favorite Diwali snacks & recipes, do enjoy the, but eat them in smaller portions. 

Here’s Why Skipping Meals Is A Bad Idea

 

A busy work schedule or a busy day can often make you forget the last time you had a meal. This is something that happens to most of us and we all end up regretting the decision to skip meals later. We all feel tired and extremely fatigued whenever we miss a meal or two. As a result, most of us try not to skip meals and focus on eating healthy food on a daily basis. 

However, several people, especially the ones who are trying to lose weight skip meals to lose weight. There is a common misconception that skipping meals can help you lose weight. The reality is that intermediate fasting or skipping meals in a proper way can lead to weight loss. However, skipping meals and intermediate fasting is not the exact thing. 

The Difference Between Intermediate Fasting And Skipping Meals 

Consuming not enough food or skipping meals during the day will make you feel dizzy. You may feel like your head is spinning and even feel like you are about to pass out. This is because of the drop in the blood glucose level in your body. If you don’t eat enough, your brain may send signals to your body indicating that it’s time to shut down. 

So, if you are planning to follow intermediate fasting it is important to do it properly. When you are eating, you will need to make sure that you are consuming food and nutrients that will allow your body to function smoothly throughout the fasting period. 

Why Skipping Meals Is Not A Good Idea

One of the major issues with skipping meals is that you may feel you are running on low energy throughout the day. The reduction in blood sugar levels will surely affect your ability to think and function properly. In short, if the brain does not have enough glucose to use, then your body will not function at 100 percent. 

Smart Carb Plan - Why You Should Never Skip Meals
Smart Carb Box

Skipping meals can also affect your mood and it may also result in overeating at times. So, if you are seriously looking to lose weight, it would be best to not skip meals. Instead, you should focus on cutting down calories per day and eating healthy homemade dishes. You could also try our Smart Carbs meal plan, which is focused on helping customers to follow a protein-rich and well-balanced diet that will help them to eat healthily and lose weight. 

 

7 Easy Hacks for Staying Healthy, Especially If You Have a Busy Lifestyle

Making lifestyle improvements, exercising more and staying healthy are expected to emerge as some of the major trends this year. However, since most of us have day jobs followed by a multitude of house chores, we are all faced with one big problem – lack of time to invest towards maintaining that healthy lifestyle. We, at Masala Box, has compiled a list of simple, yet highly effective tips and trends that you can inculcate in your daily routine to stay healthy and fit without having to spend too much time.

Healthy Eating - Masala Box
Super Seeds

  1. Super seeds: Often deceptive because of their size, super seeds are a powerhouse of essential nutrients such as protein, fiber, iron and omega-3 fatty acids. Super seeds – flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc. – are easily accessible and available in most stores and supermarkets. Sprinkle a handful of these on salads and smoothies, maybe even rotis, dosas and just about anything to make your meal a power-packed one.
  2. Simple flavours: Maintaining simple, yet bold flavours is an upcoming trend in home kitchens. The rising popularity of culinary shows and books coupled with the use of equipment such as microwaves and grills are quickly transforming flavour preferences. Spicy, heavy-on-the-stomach curries are being replaced by stir-fried, grilled and boiled alternatives, whether it is a simple dinner at home or a family feast.
  3. East meets West: Fusion dishes are a huge hit in Indian kitchens currently. Dosa wraps, roti tacos, using Greek yoghurt or skyr instead of the more familiar, homemade dahi, incorporating superfoods such as seaweed, quinoa and amaranth in everyday meals are slowly becoming the norm in Indian food.
  4. Farm to table: This somewhat old trend is making a huge comeback, especially with the increasing popularity of organic food and preference for healthy eating. The use of farm-fresh vegetables and fruits instead of the mass-produced stuff not only makes the food healthier but also ensures that farmers get a better return for all their hard work.
  5. Veganism: With the rise in awareness about the health benefits of veganism, doing away with conventional staples such as milk and dairy products is no longer frowned upon (maybe with the exception of your grandmother!). More people are adopting a vegan lifestyle owing to the availability of alternatives such as almond milk, soy milk, peanut butter, almond butter, coconut cream, tofu, etc., which makes the transition not only easy, but also healthy.
  6. Gluten-free eating: Gluten-free eating is yet another upcoming trend in India, a country where the idea of wheat-less paranthas would be laughed at. As more people are learning about gluten-intolerance and the health benefits of gluten-free eating, the popularity of bhajra, millet and jowar, which are also easily available, is on the rise.
  7. Easy-to-carry alternatives and food makeovers: The preference for the consumption of home-made food is increasingly favoured as more people are focusing on lifestyle improvement and healthy eating. This shift in preference is transforming several Indian dishes, with strong and pungent flavours making way for subtle ones and deep fried items being replaced with roasted or grilled alternatives. Oats upma and kichdis, Indian-style sandwiches and innovative paranthas are some of the most popular alternatives that are currently finding their way inside office lunch boxes in India.