Tough Questions on Weight Loss Answered! How long Does it take to Loose Weight with Yoga and Ayurveda?
Losing weight is one of most sought after health fix. Be it PCOS, thyroid imbalance, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, osteoarthritis or myriad of other illnesses- weight loss may be your best shot at getting healthier. Easier said than done, as weight loss is not easy in any of these illnesses. Yoga and Ayurveda have emerged as the go-to solution for weight loss, especially in these challenging disorders. However, we all should know that there is so much more to Ayurveda and Yoga than just weight loss benefits.
The most common question that clients ask is ” how long will it take me to lose weight if I start Yoga and Ayurveda?”. Tough to answer I would say. Weight loss depends upon :
- Your body type- For example, people with Vata and Pitta body type lose weight much faster than Kapha Body type
- Nature, severity and chronicity of your health problem
- Diet and lifestyle changes- Weight loss is much faster when you opt for healthier diet and lifestyle that complements your body type and Yoga routine.
How soon does the weight loss start after adopting Yoga and Ayurveda ?
If your weight loss plan is designed with the above three factors at its helm, weight loss should start within the first two weeks. However, some of you may still need support of additional Ayurvedic medicines, if your health issues are severe and chronic.
What is a good rate of weight loss?
As we are discussing Yoga, Ayurveda and healthy weight loss options, realistic goal should be losing 2 kg per month. Weight loss may be much higher (3-4 kg/month) for some of you, however on an average 2 kg/month is much tangible goal for most.
How soon can I reach my weight loss target with Yoga, Ayurveda and diet?
This is tricky as it depends on how much weight you need to shed. For a target of 10 kg weight loss, 6-7 months should be a realistic time span, provided you are focused and committed to the plan. Non-gimmicky weight loss, especially with Yoga and Ayurveda, takes time, commitment and patience both on part of the client and physician.
Will I gain back the weight if I stop Ayurvedic medicines and Yoga?
Your weight loss journey with Yoga and Ayurveda is also a learning process. During your weight loss process, you will learn exactly what works and does not. It will enable you to make smarter decisions and better choices when it comes to your health. This is what will help you to keep the weight off.
Also, as Ayurvedic medicines (which are prescribed correctly) create permanent changes in your metabolism, weight loss should continue even after completing the course of medicines.
Yoga practice should never be stopped. Ideally, Yoga practice should be done at least 4 consecutive days of the week for a minimum of 45 minutes post weight loss . Remember that weight can pile on very quickly if your diet and lifestyle choices are poor.
What Ayurvedic Medicines can I take for Weight loss?
Ayurvedic medicines and supplements that can be taken for weight loss are Neem, Triphala, Aloe vera juice, Varanadi kashaya, Garcinia cambogia etc. Note that the exact dosage and duration of medications has to be decided by an Ayurvedic physician before you start any Ayurvedic supplements. Also, a full body check up- including markers for kidney, liver, cardiac disorders, hormone profiles, vitamin levels etc. are a must before starting any weight loss plan.
Have you been ignoring a nagging lower back pain? Ever dismissed a constant yellowish, greenish or watery vaginal discharge as ‘nothing serious’? These nagging issues which most women prefer to put on the back burner, could be pointing towards a common, yet serious condition called Pelvic Inflammatory Disease a.k.a. PID!
Pelvic inflammatory disease is one of the most common and preventable causes of infertility in women. It is an infection of the upper genital tract most commonly due to sexually transmitted diseases. Ayurveda offers safest, long lasting and best solutions for PID by eliminating root causes of inflammation in the body.
You can suspect PID if you experience the following signs and symptoms:
- Dull pain lower abdomen and pelvis (area below the navel)
- Lower back pain
- White, yellow, green or watery vaginal discharge many a times with foul odor
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding in between periods or after intercourse
- Pain during intercourse
- Frequent fevers with chills
- Painful urination or difficulty while passing urine
Your Immune system and PID:
Harmful bacteria are always present in the vaginal tract. Yet, they never lead to diseases due to the costant vgilance of strong immune system. Microorganisms can lead to a full blown infection only when our body’s defenses are poor or weakened due to faulty diet and lifestyle. Treating PID with conventional treatments like antibiotic therapy will help control symptoms. However, they cannot prevent PID from recurring. Strengthening your immune system is the most crucial aspect and the largest benefit of treating PID with Ayurveda. Tips from Ayurveda to strengthen your immune system are:
- Eliminate causes of inflammations: Avoid food which trigger inflammation like red meat, fat rich food like cheese, refined sugar, refined flour, overtly spicy and food.
- Include foods which boost immunity: Include plenty of bitter and astringent vegetables like asparagus, lettuce, spinach, cucumbers, fresh coriander etc. Spices and herbs like turmeric, ginger, cumin, coriander,fennel, mint, parsley etc. help in strengthening immunity.
Ayurvedic herbs effective in PID:
Ayurvedic medicines help in PID by balancing digestion, boosting immunity and reducing inflammation. Ayurvedic medicines that can be used in PID are:
- Ashoka (Saraca indica)– Ashoka is popularly used in the form of Ashokarishta in Ayurveda. It has powerful
anti-oxidant properties and helps in reducing inflammation in PID. Owing to its astringent qualities, Ashoka works as a uterine tonic and boosts the health of reproductive organs. Apart for PID, Ashoka can also be used for regularizing menstrual cycle in PCOS.
- Turmeric (Curcuma longa)– Turmeric, a highly effective Ayurvedic herb and popular Indian spice is extremely beneficial in PID. It’s antimicrobial properties are at par with anti-biotics. Hence, turmeric helps in bringing down infections and also strengthens immunity in PID.
- Dhataki (Woodfordia floribunda)– Use of astringent herbs like Dhataki is commonly seen in Ayurveda in the treatment of various gynecological disorders. Dhataki is an ingredient of classical Ayurvedic powder combination Pushyanuga churna, often prescribed in PID. Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties of Dhataki surely make a must-use herb in PID.
- Daruharidra (Berberis aristata)– Daruharidra helps in reducing inflammation of reproductive tissues in PID.
Due to its anti-microbial properties, it helps in controlling the infection. Daruharidra is used in Ayurveda in the treatment of several conditions like IBS, colitis, eye disorders etc.
- Nagakesar (Mesua ferrea)– Fragrant flowers of Nagakesar are used in Ayurveda in several Gynecological conditions. Nagakesar has astringent qualities and helps in reducing muscle cramps, vaginal discharge and infections in PID.
These herbs work well for women suffering from recurrent attacks of PID. However, complications of PID like tubal blockage and infertility require detailed consultation and prescription medicines by a qualified Ayurvedic physician. Also, any patient experiencing severe abdominal pain, high grade fever with vomiting etc. in PID should see a doctor immediately as it may require emergency treatments.
Disclaimer: Advice given above does not replace treatment or medical advice and is for information purpose only.
Managing PCOS naturally is definitely overwhelming.There is lot to take in and process when it comes to diet tips, exercise routines, super foods, Ayurvedic medicines and many more. Getting organized with your approach to your PCOS management is crucial for success! Here are the steps for getting organized your PCOS management with the help of Ayurveda:
1. Identify your problem areas!
For those who have already had a consultation with an endocrinologists or a PCOD expert,you might have already accomplished this first step. It involves detailed health check up and investigations (blood and Ultrasonography) to understand the nature and extent of your PCOS. Also, vitamin deficiencies like B12, Vit. D etc. which have a huge impact on both development as well as treatment outcomes PCOS may be detected during this phase.
Identifying problem areas gives you clarity towards choosing right diet, exercise and Yoga. Also, your Ayurvedic physician will suggest the right Ayurvedic supplements and therapies based on these findings.
Ayurvedic physician will analyze your appetite, digestion, unique body type or Prakriti which are crucial for the next step.
2. Choose the right Ayurveda therapies and supplements!
Once the problem areas are identified with required investigations and Ayurvedic analysis, therapies and supplements are recommended. Some of the must do Ayurvedic therapies especially for women with obesity and infertility due to PCOS are:
Virechana and Vamana– Types of Ayurvedic cleansing procedures that involve thorough detoxification. These should be done strictly under the guidance of Ayurvedic physician. When done correctly, Panchakarma therapies have high success rates in PCOS both in terms of weight loss and infertility.
Adhere to the Ayurvedic treatment plans designed for you as strictly as possible. Ayurvedic treatment is lengthy especially in chronic PCOS cases and may last anywhere between 6 months to 1 year.
3.Choose practical and realistic diet plan!
A well rounded diet sits at the helm of PCOS management. Apart from the focus on including all the right foods, superfoods, home remedies and must-do diet rules; your diet plan has to practical and realistic.This is very critical for the sustainability of any diet plan.
An impractical and idealistic diet plan will add to your stress instead of helping you. Choose your diet wisely based on your lifestyle, ethnic eating habits and your unique Ayurvedic body type. Also, eating healthy every three to four hours is critical for insulin balance in PCOS.
Plan your meals in advance by planning your weekly grocery shopping. It is easy to whip up a healthy meal, when your pantry and refrigerator are well stocked. Proactivity is very essential in making your PCOS diet plan a success.
4.Choose exercise and Yoga mindfully!
Each person is unique and so is their PCOS. Mindless exercising seldom gives results. Moreover, it can be detrimental to your commitment towards managing your PCOS and taking charge of your health.
Hence, choose your exercise routines and Yoga mindfully. Your Ayurvedic physician will guide you regarding the nature of exercise routines and Yoga that will complement your body type and PCOS.
5.Set timelines and goals!
Any task done without setting definite goals is deemed for failure. Goal setting again should be realistic. This is best done by discussing the course of your treatment with your Ayurvedic physician. For example, in how much time can we expect results with weight loss, regularity of menses, hormonal balance etc. Your Ayurvedic physician should also discuss with you the medical reassessment in terms of ultrasonography to assess the status of polycystic ovaries, laboratory investigations for levels of hormones etc. during or after the treatment.
Goal setting will motivate you to adhere to your diet, exercise and Yoga routines and also help in ensuring positive outcomes with your PCOS management.
Weight loss with PCOS is difficult beyond description. Way beyond the adjectives of herculean task, uphill climb and all others that you can use. Hence, I prefer not to use any adjectives. It’s tough alright! In fact, losing mind, hope and patience happens much sooner than losing weight in PCOS. I witness my PCOS patients struggle with weight loss every single day.
PCOS is a complex metabolic disorder which makes weight easy to gain and hard to lose. After years of working with PCOS patients, I would like to share 3 diet rules that work for real. Here are three rules that have worked for every single PCOS patient that I have worked with for healthy, sustained and successful weight loss.
- Breakfast matters
When you eat your breakfast is as important as what you eat for breakfast! Eating your breakfast within 30-45 minutes of waking is extremely important for optimum insulin functions and weight loss (Insulin resistance- an imbalance of insulin functions is one of root causes behind PCOS). Include plenty of whole grains, good serving of protein and vegetables in your breakfast.
- Eating and not starving is what makes you lose weight
Cutting down on food intake in the name of calories is one of most common and damaging move made by women with PCOS. Reducing food intake worsens insulin imbalance and leads to more weight gain especially around the mid-section. Also, it reduces energy levels, triggers hunger pangs and fosters unhealthy binging.
Eating healthy food every three to four hours is the key to lose weight in PCOS. For adopting this habit preplanning your meals is must! Plan your one day or one week worth meals and shop for groceries accordingly to adopt this most important PCOS diet rule.
- Superfoods Rule
Super foods are foods rich in anti-oxidants, minerals and vitamins. They give your health that extra boost which is needed to overcome imbalances especially in PCOS. Include as many superfoods as possible in your daily diet to experience a natural, steady and sustainable weight loss. Superfoods that are a must have for weight loss in PCOS are:
- Avocado (1/5th of a medium size fruit every day)
- Walnuts ( 12-14 halves per day , better had in the evening)
- Millets (Foxtail millet, Finger millet, Pearl millet)
- Probiotic foods– Yogurt, buttermilk, kefir, tofu, tempeh, kombucha etc. and other fermented foods like Idli, dosa, dhokla, sourdough bread etc.
Apart from these diet rules for PCOS weight loss, avoiding problem foods like wheat, milk, white sugar and junk foods is equally important. Also, regular workout and Yoga should be planned depending on individual body type and feasibility.
Yo- yo diets, weight loss programs promising near magical weight loss, boot camps and what not- short term solutions DO NOT work and are not recommended for PCOS. Keep it simple and feasible when it comes to weight loss. Also, remember that weight loss is a part of being healthy and not the definition of health itself. Make your weight loss in PCOS a memorable journey that you enjoy and feel good about!
Ok, lets start with a quick trivia – What is the difference between the term Marriage and Wedding ?
Wedding is the ceremony to get into a relationship called Marriage 🙂
Therefore inviting people by writing “You are invited to my wedding.” is correct rather than saying “You are invited to my marriage”.
Every young girl dreams of getting married to her prince charming some day in a fairy tale manner. Weddings in any culture are a big moment for any girl or groom for that matter.
Girls from the subcontinent like India, Pakistan, Middle East Asia (UAE, Dubai) etc. have a long drawn tradition of preparing for the wedding-months in advance.
These days Bollywood style weddings are quite a rage in India and with Indians settled abroad in US, UK and other parts of the world.
Most often the preparation involves Guest list planning, Venue Selection, Wedding Jewelry,Clothing, Food, logistics and following the traditional rituals during the wedding ceremony.
On a personal front though, the bride and the groom focus on enhancing their appearance only at the last moment.
This typically involves, hiring a bridal makeup artist or specialist to do makeup during engagement and wedding events.
There are very few who really focus on wedding “make over”.
Most of my clients are confused between MakeUp and MakeOver especially for such a big event in their life called Wedding.
In order to appear “your Best” during the wedding period, its not only important to focus on Makeup, Jewelry, Clothing aspects but also on enhancing your personality and health.
In order to appear your best during the wedding period, we generally recommend to start the basic preparation of focusing on your health and lifestyle aspects at least 4-6 months in advance. This would involve focus on your diet, daily routine , building stamina and focusing on critical health aspects like managing your periods,PCOD related issues etc., skin care , dental hygiene and hair care. The most important aspect governing most of these health areas is Diet and lifestyle modifications.
Consult a good dietitian and make subtle changes in your lifestyle based on your health issues can prepare you for the big day and the life after wedding 🙂
Most of the times – a patient and doctor relationship is very limited to the discussion around the patients current health issues.
Once the issue is resolved, the patient nor the doctor find enough time and inclination in pursuing the discussion and getting meaningful feedback.
This could be primarily due to the doctor not having enough time to spend on the “person” who is no longer a “patient”.
A busy doctor has to deal with a lot of people on any given day.
Also, the relationship aspect becomes difficult to handle as most people are not keen to share details in an ongoing basis as they do not see – it’s necessary.
For a doctor, regular feedback and updates from a patient is very important to monitor and measure the success of his treatment. Also, it provides good insight and information to a doctor when the patient provides a feedback. It not only feels good for the doctor but also helps in planning and providing good care to other patients with similar issues on : How to approach a new patient and provide better care and cure.
Personally, due to the nature of issues that I encounter especially around PCOD, Weight gain, Skin problems, Pregnancy, Lifestyle and hair care issues etc. in person visit in a clinical setting is indeed easier to cure and handle. Also the amount of time and effort it involves in providing care and on-going monitoring is much more efficient in a clinical setting.
However, with a lot of people approaching for online consultations and advice, providing good care and consultation to patients online via channels like Phone, email, chat and video consultations has become a growing trend. Its easier and convenient for a patient to book an appointment and also consult a doctor due to the advancement of technologies and communication tools. Additionally, the stress and cost related to physical commute to a clinic can be avoided and saves time and money to the patients.
For a doctor, this provides a new challenge as well as opportunities to handle different types of issues and people.
Interestingly, a few of the challenges related to remote patient management and cure can be addressed with good and effective feedback especially if the disease is a long standing one and needs prolonged period of treatment and care.
I have seen this work effectively in my medical practice since a few years now. Most of my patients who have communicated and provided insights into their health and feedback on a regular basis has immensely benefited me in my practice and providing better care to other patients. Also, this benefits the patient on their return visits as I have had their case history details and been in regular touch.
Sharing a few details of some of my recent paitent testimonials below as a sample.
Also, I must congratulate the patients too for their trust in my work, belief that they will get cure and the disciplined and persistent approach to dealing with the disease. Their committment and trust in Ayurveda and me, has immensely helped in my practice and passion for medicine !
PS: Patient details will not be disclosed for privacy reasons.
3 Simple Exercises for a Healthy Living
We all know and are always inspired to do excercises and cultivate a healthly lifestyle.
However, due to the daily grind and tight schedules in our lives, the morning rush hour for school,college, office meetings and deadlines – sometimes its hard to make this a regular habit.
Most of us make it a new year resolution and perform it as a daily habit. However, after a few days/weeks, the enthusiasm dies down. We forget or cannot keep up with this plan and eventually, it ends up becoming NEXT new year’s resolution – and the cycle continues 🙂
It’s quite important to form a regular habit of exercising in order to remain healthy and also to heal faster from any eventualities.
Basic exercising is like regular service and maintenance of a car – if not done regularly , the wear and tear – stress of our daily lives will eventually take its toll on our general well being. It becomes hard to manage good health and recovery from illness after the age of 40.
Hence, from a long term perspective of general well being – its important to do regular exercise.
It helps immensely in recovery from simple health issues like weather-depression, cough & cold to PCOS/PCOD, stomach,acne and stamina issues and for improved brain functions to be more productive in our daily lives.
As a doctor , I generally recommend these basic 5 exercises to my patients based on their lifestyle, prior health history and after careful analysis of their body types. It’s also important to follow a routine for exercising and take care of certain DO’s and Dont’s before and after exercising.
- Mornings are best for regular exercise, however its ok to do it in the evening time too.
Generally, preferred timings for these exercises would be between 5 am to 8am (earlier the better) and for evenings between 4pm-6pm.
- It should not take more than 20-30 mins to complete the entire session.
- Also, generally, do not eat anything 2 hours prior to exercising and 1 hour post doing the exercises.
- Find a cool and clam place to do these exercises – roof tops, garden areas, balcony etc are preferred places.
- Use a yoga mat which is soft yet firm and provides enough grip while exercising without a risk of slipping while performing stretches.
- Wear loose clothing or yoga pants and round-neck t-shirts. Bare foot is best for performing these simple excercises.
So, here we go……….
- Warm Ups (10 mins)
– Do simple breathing for 5 mins – with large cycle of inhaling and short cycle of exhaling.
– Stretching and bending of back to loosen the muscles
– Side ward bending , forward bending , Neck -Shoulder rotations etc.
- Regular Exercises (10 mins)
– The best would be complete Surya Namaskar poses for a count of 10 -20 based on your stamina and progress.
- Cool Down (5 mins)
– Pranayama and shavasana.
Its pretty important to do these exercises for a regular period of 6-8 weeks without fail, for your brain to form it as an habit.
Also to start seeing the benefits of this lifestyle change – it takes a minimum of 3-4 weeks.
So doing this for 6-8 weeks without fail – is pretty important.
Hope this article inspires, enlightens and brings about a positive change in our lives and makes living a great experience.
Happy Diwali /Deepawali to all……