Navratri period is also associated with revelry and festive activities but during fasting, the Hindu devotees usually restrict themselves to fruits, nuts and juices while the intake of other food items is very limited and this can lead to constipation. Since there are dietary restrictions and only specific foods are allowed, it is important to plan the right diet.
Changes in your diet and lifestyle during Navratri can lead to constipation but with a few tweaks here and there, you can avoid it. Long fasting periods during Navaratri help you to detoxify your body but due to changes in your entire diet pattern, it can also cause problems like acidity and constipation and if you also feel irked by this problem every time, we’re here to tell you how to avoid it.
In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Ashwinikumar Kudari, Senior Consultant and Robotic Surgeon, Surgical Gastroenterology at Narayana Health City, shared, “The reasons for constipation are lack of fibre and fluid intake, consuming more tea or coffee, staying up late at night and prolonged periods of fasting. As the chances of constipation increase during fasting, make sure you include fruits like papaya, guava, pear and figs and vegetables like bottle gourd and pumpkin that are high in dietary fibre and rich in vitamins.”
She added, “Fruits with high water content like watermelon, oranges and grapefruit will help you stay hydrated and maintain the electrolyte balance. Makhana is another superfood which is loaded with antioxidants and its high-fibre content avoids constipation. Maintain a good intake of fluids like lemonade to keep yourself going.”
Dr Mala Kaneria, Consultant, Infectious Diseases at Jaslok Hospital, suggested:
1. First, up your fiber intake. Food items like Rajgiri ka atta, kuttu ka atta (buckwheat flour), samak ke chawal, makhana (fox nuts) provide the much needed fibre. Oats cooked in water too are fibre rich. Sabudana khichdi is high on energy. However, certain foods like fried food, high caloric diet, carbonated drinks should be avoided.
2. Drink enough water. The recommended daily intake of water should be three to four liters per day. This aids in digestion, prevents constipation and the bloating caused by sodium and carbohydrate . Lemonade, coconut water and buttermilk are other recommended liquids.
3. Include curds in your diet.
4. Keep a proper time gap between the intake of fruits and vegetables.
5. Avoid consuming excessive tea and coffee in order to keep sleep at bay
6. Keep active during the day, however tired you may be post dancing.
Relating that all of us tend to eat a lot of savories during the 9-day festivities of Navratri, Sharanya Shastry, Chief Clinical Nutritionist at Apollo Spectra Hospital in Bangalore, advised:
Tip 1 – Break your fast with dates or a whole fruit ( fruit over a juice)
Tip 2 – Have a sabudana/sago or poha for dinner especially if you have had an oily food or binge eaten
Tip 3 – Have a curd based preparation for any two meals ( buttermilk/ curd/ raita)
Tip 4 – Make sure you give a gap of 2 hrs between dinner and sleep timing
Tip 5 – Start your day with overnight soaked raisins (Black) if you are constantly constipated or bloated