Nutrition Myths

When Weight loss slows down – Is it an indication that weight loss program is no longer effective?

During the course of a fat loss program there may a plateau phase where one does not see a drop in weight on the weighing scale. On such a program, you may be losing body fats at the same time building up your muscle mass through exercise. Since muscle weighs heavier than fat, your scale may not show any change in weight, in spite of fat loss. As muscle weighs more than fat and occupies less space, hence one may observe inch loss.
If processed food says “Cholesterol free” then does that mean it is “trouble free”?

Products marked “cholesterol free” may not contain cholesterol but may contain other types of saturated fats that can raise blood cholesterol levels more than foods containing dietary cholesterol. Moreover certain foods although low in saturated fat may still be rich in calories due to presence of large amount of unsaturated oils or sugars, leading to weight gain which in turn leads to elevated cholesterol. Care should be taken to consume these foods in moderate quantities only.

High protein foods promote health & help build muscles.

Its a common misconception that taking a lot of protein rich foods increase muscle size and aid in body building. Entire surplus protein (which is not consumed by the body) is converted to fat. So it might result in fat gain in certain parts of the body. Thus care should be taken to include low fat protein sources in the diet such as low fat milk, lean meats, chicken, fish & cereal-pulse combinations. Ask your dietician as to what is the right amount of Protein intake for you and whether you are having a balanced diet ?

Nutritional Values of Wheat Grass

Wheat Grass – Nutritional facts

Serving Size; One (1) tsp. (Approx 3.5 gms)

Calories 13.3 kcal

Amount per serving

%DV     *

Amount per serving

%DV       *

Total Fat                         0.24 g

0%

Protein1.04 g

2.0%

Saturated Fat                  0.05 g

0%

Chlorophyll 31mg

**

Mono saturated Fat          0.03 g

0%

Vitamin A 1200 IU

24.0%

Poly saturated Fat            0.16 g

0%

Vitamin C 6mg

10.0%

         Trans fat                            0                                

0%

Folic Acid 0.03mg

6.0%

         Cholesterol                        0

0%

Nilacin 0.14mg

0.7%

         Sodium                             5.94 mg

0%

Calcium 4 mg

0.4%

         Total Carbohydrate            1.75 g

0%

Iron 1.31 mg

7.0%

         Dietary Fiber                     1.21 g

0%

         Sugars                              0.21g

0%

* Percent daily values are based on a 2000 Calories Diet
**Daily Values not Established
Ingredients : 100% Pure and Natural Wheat Grass Powder (Triticium aestivu,)
Doses : 1 tsp(Approx. 3.5 g ) of Powder in the morning

 

Prices of Life Saving drugs in India

We all know that people do business to make money but it is very unfortunate that some people try to make money out of other person’s misery as well. Some of the life saving drugs that are sold in India are sold at exorbitantly high prices with a complete disregard to their cost of import or cost of manufacture.

MRP (Maximum retail price) is anyways something which has been mocked at by companies retailing water as the same bottle of water is retailed at Rs 12 with MRP of 12 printed on it. But if you go to a restaurant or a coffee chain you will find MRP of 45 printed on it. People exploit all the loop holes in the government policies but should the same be true in case of Medicines. Particularly when people know that without medicines someone mightnt be able to live.

Inspite of Government of India taking steps to curb down malpractices in drug pricing they have been highly unsuccessful. I recently experienced it when someone in the family had to be administered Human Albumin, which is considered to be a life saving drug in certain medical conditions.

Fortunately before purchasing the drug we enquired a close relative who happens to be a doctor and obviously has contacts with chemists in Delhi. We finally purchased the drug which has MRP of INR 6030 written on it for  INR 2000. I am pretty sure that cost of the drug to the dealer would have been less than 2000 and he wouldnt have sold it on his cost price. Even if the person was kind enough to sell the 4 bottles to us at his cost price, I was zapped to see the margin in MRP. I infact went to couple of other medical shops post my purchase to check the actual price from them as well. Almost all the chemists were selling the drug for MRP printed on the bottle. One kind gentleman offered 10% discount but that too after showing that he was doing great favor to us.

Anyway, I am not trying to ridicule anyone here but there are certain government agencies whose work is to monitor the pricing of drugs and monitor as to what is the price in comparison to the cost of import – I feel such agencies have failed miserably in the job they are doing and government should do something about drugs that are being sold in the market at these atrocious margins.

Weight Loss for Women – A Dietician can help

For women feeling good is synonymous to looking good! And the bane of looking good is that ogre of increasing weight. It is rarely that a woman is satisfied with the way she looks and with her weight, whatever it may be. There is that nagging feeling of insecurity and weight loss is a subject for constant consideration.

Health and Weight Loss

Drastic methods of weight loss like unsupervised fasting, bulimia, fad diets like Atkins No-Carbs diet can be very dangerous to health and leave you looking haggard and tired instead of young and vibrant.

If you feel that you are over-weight or your thighs and hips are not as slim as you would like them to be inspite of regular exercise and a controlled diet, you should consult a good dietician before going on some fad diet or taking some diet pills or buying some extraordinary gadget that will make you slim in a jiffy! Keep away from instant remedies for they cannot give enduring results.

A good dietician will be able to find out whether you really are a candidate for weight loss or not. A trained dietician can advise you about how much you should lose and how you should lose it. By following the directives of an experienced dietitian, you can maintain optimum weight and feel healthy.

Checklist of a Dietician

There are many factors that a dietician considers before planning your diet and activity specifically for you. The following are some of them:

  • Your weight with respect to your height and age.
  • Thyroid and other hormonal deficiency
  • Life style; sedentary or active.
  • Occupational stress
  • Emotional stress
  • Physical ailments such as diabetes, hypertension etc.
  • Post natal weight gain

Considering all these factors that are needed to be thought of,  before chalking out a specific diet and exercise program, you can understand that you need professional help from a trained dietician. Not taking treatment from a dietitian could hamper your health and damage your looks forever.

Post Pregnancy Weight Loss

There is about 10 kilos of weight gain during pregnancy. After delivery usually there is weight loss during lactation and in about a year after delivery, the woman goes back to her former weight. However, sometimes there is no post pregnancy weight loss due to a variety of reasons and the weight seems to have accumulated on the hips and thighs in particular.

A good dietician can best advice in these circumstances and treat you back to your slim hips and thighs!

Wheat Grass and its Benefits ( A Fad or substance)

Recently I visited a neighbourhood store and when paying for the groceries, our friendly grocery store owner who is aware that I am a dietitian said Madam Have a look at this product . How come everyone is asking for it and you are not ? You are a dietitian so you should be the first one to ask for . At that stage I realized what a rage / fad wheat grass has become nowadays. everyone is just raving about its benefits as if it is the best product for health of an individual.

For the people who dont know what Wheatgrass is. It is the young grass of the wheat plant. Many people (Indians during Navratras) grow their own wheatgrass by putting wheat seeds in water and then harvest the leaves. It is a natural source of vitamins and antioxidants, including Vitamins A, E, and B-12, Calcium, Selenium, Magnesium, Iron. On its own, it is tough to digest and mostly people crush and squeeze to make its juice. Wheatgrass leaves are also dried and made into tablets or capsules.

To list the benefits that are claimed in various health magazines or TV shows – wheat grass is claimed to strengthen the immune system, detoxify the body, and ward off diseases.Wheatgrass is also claimed to help treat constipation and pain of rheumatism. People also believe that it can help combat a number of everyday health conditions, including colds, coughs, fevers, digestive ailments, and skin conditions. Some people even claim that a wheatgrass diet can shrink cancerous tumors and improve survival.

People reason it on chlorophyll, the pigment that gives plants their green color. Claims also go to an extent that chlorophyll acts like hemoglobin and increases oxygen levels in the body. Despite all the above listed claims, there is very little evidence or any scientific evidence on the benefits of wheatgrass. Some studies in ISRAEL showed that Wheatgrass is helpful in ulcerative colitis and some studies have shown that it helps reduce side effects of Chemotherapy on women of breast cancer. But like I said earlier all these studies havent been done at large scale and we cant conclude anything from these whereas the risk of contracting diseases from Wheatgrass also exist which every one has been ignoring . It is known to have side effects like nausea , headaches and allergic reactions like swelling of throats etc hence people suffering from any sort of ailment or compromised immune system should completely avoid it. Like I have been advocating everything in LIMITS is ok – so for people who want to try it can do so but that doesnt mean that they can go gung ho over it and have it all the time and expect miracles from Wheatgrass.

A healthy and balanced nutritious diet is what one needs to take instead of believing in these fads which come and go :-).