Binge-ate during festival? Here are ways to recover

Drinking plenty of water and consuming a high-fibre diets can help you detoxify

Consuming lots of fruits and vegetables is a big part of detoxifying after a festival.

After indulging in an overdose of festive treats, most Bengalureans are feeling sluggish. Excessive intake of carbohydrates does not do good for the body, say medical experts. 

An aftercare diet or detoxifying is a must, they observe. But are detox diets a myth or do they really help? 

Pavithra N Raj, chief dietician, Columbia Asia Referral Hospital, Yeshwanthpur points out that it is best to eat wisely rather than binging and purging later.

“A few days of a detox diet will help to a certain extent like colon cleansing. But it is best to consume treats in moderation during any festival,” she says.

A detox diet, which is followed for two to three days, cuts out sugar, other carbohydrates, and oil.

“One should consume plenty of water which helps cleanse the kidney; tender coconut water, and fruits and vegetables rich in fibre helps clean the colon. This will help in weight management too,” she says.

There is no need to increase the workout time. A brisk walk of 30 to 40 minutes works well, she says.

“Since an individual is consuming lighter food during a detox diet, it could leave them tired. Thus, working out excessively is not a good option,” says Pavithra.

Festivals and high-calorie food are synonymous in our country, says Dr Mahesh Channappa, senior consultant-general laparoscopic and bariatric surgery, Aster CMI Hospital.

“Patients are advised to enjoy the festival but opt for low calorie, sugarless sweets, or eat more of organic nuts/honey sweets instead of heavier sugar-laden sweets,” he says. Mahesh says, “One wakes up to guilt the next day and that drives one towards working out. One must consume a lot of water, green tea and detoxifying liquids during this period.”

During the detoxification period fast food and alcohol must be avoided.

“Proteins are a must; it’s good to consume fibrous fruits to clear the intestine which will in turn help in reducing weight,” he says.

Don’t take a break from workout, say experts

While most believe that working out double the time can help detoxify, some doctors believe that this might not be the most healthy option. Rekha Prabhu, health coach with Cure Fit, says that one should not stop working out during the festival. “If the gym is closed for the festive season, a regular gym goer can work out smartly at home. You can have a 40 minute session of a sports activity or do  home-based workouts which include planks, lunges and squats, yoga, a quick run in the morning, or exercise with a skip-rope. The workout can be a combination of different these things too,” she says.

This helps one not gain weight with the extra calories, she adds. “One should also snack smartly. Indulge in home-based desserts like ‘anjeer’ or date-based ‘barfis’ or sweets made out of jaggery, fruit-based desserts like a kheer made out of Custard Apple or an Avocado custard,” she explains.

How to detox?

A light-detox diet should be followed for 2 to 3 days. This includes:
Breakfast: A high-fiber diet that includes oats or broken wheat porridge. Fruits can be consumed. Drink warm water with honey and lemon in it.
Lunch: Eat raw salads or vegetables and fruits like cucumber etc.
Evening snack: Egg whites can be consumed which will take care of one’s protein intake.
Dinner: A good vegetable soup or porridge.

Detoxifying with Ayurveda

Dr Ashwini V Konnur, co-founder and chief physician of Amrit Ayurdham, Uttarahalli, points out that detoxifying is an external and internal process.

“For the skin, an oil massage followed by herbal powder bath is a healthier option than soap. Scrubbing the powder helps to scrape out the dead skin and it improves blood circulation to skin,” she says.

For internal cleansing, one must keep the vata dosha in balance, she says. Basti (medicated enema) treatment is considered the best for the same.
“For complete body detoxification and to feel lighter, after consuming extra calories from binging, treatments like Vamana (vomiting treatment) and Virechana (purgation treatment) would be helpful,” she says. Ashwini adds that the above-mentioned treatments are three out of five detoxification treatments in the Panchakarma.

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