Principles of #CleanEating with Friday Night Column
- Homemade Food : There is no second thought , that meals cooked in professional kitchens are loaded with fats to add to the impeccable taste. Hence clean eating begins with home cooked meals. Always prefer to make a version of your favourite meal than ordering from outside . You will be surprised how easy it is to prepare some really yummy food without the excess oil. I have shared many of my diet recipes on the blog . Click here for more !
- Stop stocking Junk/Namkeen/Soft Drinks : To avoid binge eating junk food and namkeen when hungry , choose not to stock them in your pantry . This is the best way to avoid the guilt trip later . Same goes for sugary drinks and colas (even diet colas).
- Portion Control and no second servings : Put one large serving of the dish in your plate and avoid second servings . Fix a bowl , and always use a similar serving size . Do not eat less. Eat in moderation to avoid hunger pangs later . Controlled portion sizes will help you have even your favourite foods often without gaining weight.
- Options for high protein dishes are rajma/ chhole/ Dal/ paneer / Soya bean Chaap or nutrela/ chicken/ besan in the form of Kadhi or Gatta/lobia/sambhar/egg curry.When pairing a protein rich dish , choose a protein rich bread like besan Cheela/ moong Dal Cheela / missi roti instead of wheat breads like chapati/ naan . So when having rajma , pair it with missi roti . While making paneer , wrap it in moong Dal Cheela. With Kadhi , have besan Cheela. And so on .
- Preferred vegetables are ghiya, cauliflower, cabbage, carrot , capsicum, French beans, tinda, Turai, pumpkin (sitaphal) ,spinach, karela,Methi ,bathua , Brocolli and mushroom. Less preferred vegetables are Peas , corn,brinjal, bhindi. Vegetables to be totally avoided are potato, arbi , kathal.
- Breakfast >> Lunch> Dinner : As it is well known , breakfast should be the heaviest , followed by a moderately portioned lunch and a humble dinner . Avoid eating protein rich food in dinner on Non- high protein days. Never skip a meal
- Rice once a week only in lunch without a side dish : Restrict rice to once a week , and prefer it in lunch only . Do not pair it with a side dish like rajma / chole . Prepare it as fried rice / pulao and have it plain / with curd .
- Add dairy in lunch : Pair lunch with curd on days you won’t be having high protein diet .
- Breakfast Options : Dalia/ Upma / Vermicelli/ Suji Idli / stuffed parantha with onion, cabbage , cauliflower or mooli are good breakfast options in moderate portions .
- Grilled is best : The yummiest way to cook a protein without it being unhealthy is to grill it . Use Air Fryer / Oven/ Tava Tandoor and using usual vegetables and paneer / chicken : enjoy scrumptious food without cheating . For recipes click here !
- Gravy is your hidden enemy : If enjoying something rich like rajma and chhole, restrict gravy . Usually it is loaded with excess oil and will only hamper your health plan without filling your stomach.
- Pickles/ salt : Excess of both can lead to water retention . So while you should entirely avoid pickles and chutneys , salt is alright in moderation.
- Desserts once a month : Desserts are the main culprits which can setback your diet by days to weeks . Always have a small amount not more than once a month .
- Cheat meals : grilled starters only . Avoid breads / rice : If you want to enjoy restaurant food without hampering your diet much , stick to starters which are grilled / Tandoori . Avoid main course curries , breads and rice. Alternatively have a piece of shahi paneer / Curry chicken with tandoori roti if not having starters .
- Add flavour with Chili , lemon and vinegar : Health food doesn’t have to be bland . Add Chili , lemon and vinegar to spice up your food.
- Hydrate : Drink 2-3 litres of water (plain ) daily to help your body burn the fat which will ultimately lead to weightloss.
- Do not drink your calories : avoid smoothies/ shakes or even juices/ milk/soups .
- Beware of Biscuits / Dips : Avoid the temptations of biscuits and dips while snacking with tea . To the max , eat 1-2 digestive biscuit once a day . Use Stevia sugar free if you can’t have tea without sugar .
- In case of hunger pangs, snack on 1 whole fruit like apple/ pear/ pomegranate/orange or alternatively you can have 1 katori curd or 200 ml Chhachh before 6pm . No snacking is allowed post dinner .
- Walk if you can : If you have a sedentary lifestyle , add 150 minutes/ week of brief walking to your routine .
P.S:Since my husband and I are restricting our calories to lose weight due to my brother’s approaching wedding , these meals are not what we have while maintaining weight . I will be sharing maintenance meal planning separately , soon.
I don’t claim to be a Dietician , but yes I am a physician and a homemaker , hence planning healthy meals for my family is second nature to me.
Also this is what adults in my family eat , not for growing children .