India celebrates this Navratri festival twice every year. Navratri is a festival of Goddess Durga and her nine different forms. She, the divine mother keeps her children well-fed with nutritious and healthy Navratri foods. As the season changes, dietary modifications are incorporated as well. Most of us observe fast nowadays with two purposes:
One is to clean and detoxify our body for the upcoming weather changes and the other is to observe spiritual growth while practicing patience and chanting mantras. We need this more in today’s testing and uncertain times. we must remain in our abodes and seek our mother’s blessings while decluttering the mind.
Most of the time, we find ourselves binging on the chips and cold drinks while observing a fast. Well, that’s not going to detoxify your body!
Though, we hope that it will someday! But for now, we need to make some good food choices to lose excess weight and gain patience! Here are our favorite healthy foods that you can pick this Navratri to munch on.
1. Makhana/Fox nut/Lotus seeds
These big, puffy delicious white ping-pong balls are grown in the waterlogged plants in the whole of Asia. Here are some other reasons for loving them even more:
- Makhanas are high in potassium, magnesium, and folate, so they are good for the heart.
- They have fewer calories and high fiber content which in turn helps in weight loss and prevents constipation too.
- Lotus seeds have a low glycemic index, so they are great for diabetics who are observing fast.
- A good amount of natural flavonoids (read Shatavari benefits for best anti-aging advice), so anti-aging as well. Say hello to the younger you!
- Great for bones, as they are rich in calcium so that’s why Ayurveda advises it for people having joint pains.
Have it while roasting in just a teaspoon of ghee (clarified butter), toss with some rock salt and the spices of your choice. Munch on without guilt.
You can also toss some in warm milk and have them like your breakfast cereal during the Navratri.
2. Kuttu atta/Buckwheat flour
This humble black flour has more nutrients that our regular wheat flour. Here are the points that prove it:
- Buckwheat flour is high in fiber, so easy to digest and cleanse your digestive system too.
- It has essential fatty acids, that reduces cholesterol and thus good for high BP (hypertensive) patients and diabetes patients as well.
- To our surprise it has B-complex, vitamins and minerals, protein and iron in really good amount.
Try to make healthy choices, like make kuttu paratha (buckwheat flatbread) by mixing some boiled potatoes in the buckwheat flour and have it with veggies of your choice. Refrain from making poori and pakoda, even if you do, be cautious about the portion size.
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3. Sabudana/Tapioca Pearls
These beautiful pearls are not just appealing to the eye but appealing to the body’s energy needs too. Being high in carbs, it will provide you energy for your whole day chores. After All, you need to go to the office (not in today’s scenarios though), run errands and take care of all the fussy kids at home (both smaller and adult ones). This one goes for the males too!
Prefer sabudana khichdi and baked tikki than the deep fried sabudana vadas. Add tamarind chutney and some smooth curd to add to the taste! Yummy!
The aerated drinks and packed juices are a big NO. As they will just give you empty calories and will make you bloated if you take them empty stomach. Although, staying hydrated is a must in this changing weather.
Try to choose the healthy options available like buttermilk, coconut water, Milkshakes, smoothies with berries and fruits, Lemonade and Green tea. You will love praying even more while you are hydrated!
5. Fruits & Vegetables
They are often ignored and we binge on potatoes only. Well, other fruits and veggies also exist and they will keep giving you slow release of sugar (especially fruits) and you will stay energized the whole day.
The fruits and veggies you can choose from are many, some of them are bananas, sweet potato, spinach, bottle gourd, cucumber, tomato, papaya, apple, carrot, pomegranate etc. Also keep some dry fruits with you, and whenever you feel a little low, then munch on some almonds, walnuts, raisins and pistachios.
Chips can wait!
So, making the healthy choice is in your hands. We suggest you to refrain from fried and embrace the boiled, baked or shallow fried (scarcely) recipes. For example, try the Sama (barnyard millet) pancakes, mashed potatoes,sama vegetable pulao, baked aloo chaat and paneer tikka this Navratri.
We love Dasana Amit’s Navratri recipes.
Also, we pray that Maa Durga blesses you all with great health, wealth and everything good!
Stay Blessed and Stay at Home!
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