The best in the business reveal what you should know about losing weight...
What's the difference between a healthy diet and a dangerous one, a workable one and one that sees you secretly stuffing your face with chocolate cake just two days after you promised not to. Tried and tested eexpert advice, that's what. So, in honour of that little black dress you've been dying to fit into, we asked 6 diet and nutrition experts for their top tips on getting rid of those extra kilos. And no, there's no carb-hating or mealmissing involved...
Cheenu Prashar, Consultant Dietician, Max Healthcare
1 I never skip breakfast as it can leave one hungry, tired and looking for less healthy food later in the day. I begin my day with high-fibre, low-fat breakfast of porridge, muesli, oats, wholewheat bread, and sprouts.
2 Another reason not to miss brekky: it takes care of indigestion, which occurs when you skip a meal or overeat. A light lemony drink after meals also aids in better digestion.
3 I look for ways to walk and move around every minutes during the day. Taking the stairs more often and parking farther away from your destination, going and grabbing a glass of water on my own, are simple ways to stay active.
Kiran Sawhney, Nutritionist
1 Consistence, dedication and strong willpower in following a fitness regime is what works. We are disciplined for a bit, and then tend to binge, which ruins the entire rhythm. Build your willpower by achieving small missions every day.
2 Adopt a variety of fitness regimes, on different days. If you do kickboxing one day, try pilates, walking, swimming and aerobics on other days of the week so you don't get bored.
3 Cardio is very important as it tones up your system. Exercise is a great way to cut flab, but you must get a personal trainer, who will teach you the right techniques to aid weight loss. They may be expensive, but they are worth it.
Reeta Shankar, Dietician
1 Should start their day with protein so that there is no extra insulin in the system. I have egg white, milk and sprouts or cottage cheese, oats and bran, so that my body gets the right complex carbs.
2 The aim is to stay full for as long as possible, so mix some moong dal into your flour. It is quite filling and will cut your craving for big meals or snacking.
3 Dinner should always be light, so try grilled chicken or just a soup. Veggies are ideal- they're light on the system and natural. Eat as much as you like.
Shikha Sharma, Dietician
1 I think skipping alcohol is one of the best way to stay fit and healthy. Alcohol has empty calories and no nutritional benefit. It also stimulates appetite and interferes with your sleep. A loss-loss, really.
2 Instead of a sugary treat, which you may want to indulge in after a meal, try a fruit instead. Fruits satisfy a sweet tooth in the same way cake might, but it's much healthier.
3 Liquid food is a great way to lose weight. Soups and juices give you instant energy without the carbs, plus they nourish the body. However, a liquid diet doesn't work for everybody, so consult your doctor before starting one.
Ishi Khosla, Dietician
1 I typically avoid sugar in my drinks, or restrict it to a small spoon in my morning tea. Sugar is empty, fattening calories, so large quantities are best avoided. To cut your intake, watch out for the worst offenders: drinks and baked goods.
2 Not having big meals at night is a perfect way to cut calories. Towards the end of the day, your metabolism slows down, so stick to small portions and light foods.
3 Fill up your plate with veggies instead of starchy stuff, which will make you feel awfully full and add calories. If possible, make yourself an organic meal- it's light, and great for your body.
Rachna Sethi, Nutritionist
1 Increase your fibre intake by eating whole foods and grains instead of processed foods. Avoid white rice and refined cereals.
2 Substitute junk food with homemade, healthy snacks. You can make burgers or pizzas at home, which will not have trans fatty acids. You can also attempt continental style idlis-instead of sambhar, have it with green veggies.
3 Add soyabean to your diet and have it at least once in a week as it helps strengthen the bones. You can boil soya, make it into a paste and add it in your meals, or just have soya milk (especially great for those who want to keep fit the right way, without skipping meals or starving). Soya has many nutrients, as does tofu, which you stock at home.
Kajal Pandya, nutritionist, Vedanta, MediCity
1 Have lots of fruits and salads, as they have antioxidants and minerals which boost your body, plus they are low in fat and calories. They also eliminate wastes quickly and help reduce cravings for sweets.
2 Drink lots of water-it removes toxins and helps cushion your joints. Studies have also proven that a low consumption of water allows more fat to be deposited instead of being metabolized into energy.
3 Scientists have discovered that stress could make you gain weight. Relaxation is the key to many health problems, so indulge in daily meditation.