Articles on non alcoholic drinks

5 Low Sugar Calorie Alcoholic Drinks

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
All kinds of alcoholic drinks contain some amount of sugar. An analysis of sugar levels in cider, sherry and spirits found that some drinks contained as many as five teaspoons of sugar in a single serving. Our body’s metabolism of sugar and carbohydrates when alcohol is present varies from the norm. Contrary to most food and beverages, alcohol has a lowering effect on blood sugars. Alcohol’s metabolism in the body blocks the liver’s release of blood sugar-regulating hormones. This can cause low blood sugars, or hypoglycemia, especially in individuals with diabetesA daily intake of 2-3 teaspoons of sugar is recommended for good health. Besides the alcohol the mixers added to the drinks further increase the sugar content of the drink. So to help you your sugar intake in check here are some drinks that have lower sugar content: 1. Gin: Distilled liquor has almost zero grams of sugar per serving. The sugar content of the fruit and grains used to make liquor is lost during the distillation process2. Vodka: Just like gin it contains zero grams of sugar. Biggest mistake people make while having it is by adding tonic to it. Tonic contains sugar and should be avoided if you are watching your sugar intake. Best way to consume vodka is as Russians do, sip it neat.3. Rum: Again Rum on its own contains no sugar but the mixers make up for it. A good rum can be sipped on the rocks.4. Red Wine: The wine-making process of fermentation turns the sugar in grapes into ethanol and carbon dioxide. Most of the grape sugar is used up during this process, leaving wine with very little sugar content. Red table wines have less than 1 gram of sugar per serving.5. Light Beer: Light beer has about half a gm of sugar per serving, lesser calories than regular beer and contains no fat. Lastly, the calories in alcohol are empty calories, which means that the drinks don’t also contain essential vitamins and minerals so the calories aren’t contributing anything to your health. Over time, too many of these empty calories can cause you to put on excess weight.

Exercise to Drink More Water

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Inspite of knowing that water is good for your body, many of us find it difficult to drink water. We have something that can help. Did you know exercising makes you thirsty? So if you are unable to kick out this bad habit of drinking less then maybe adding an exercise routine can help you get more water in the system.But why does exercise make you thirsty? First, during workouts we sweat, losing water and salt which causes the imbalance of fluids and electrolytes in the body. Our body naturally counters this internal reaction by triggering thirst. If you are feeling thirsty post workouts, its because you have worked hard and have lost water and salt through sweat.As 70% of the body composition is water, after workouts and wear and tear the body goes into repair mode and requires water for speedy recovery. Water helps carry nutrients and helps remove toxins and wastes from your body.Sometimes we don't pay enough attention to the body signals and drink enough water resulting in dehydration.Here are a few tips to maintain water levels and avoid dehydration: - Drink enough water pre workouts to keep the water levels maintained. - Consume less of diuretics which flush out extra fluid from the body leaving no reserves in the body. - Have salt and sugar in water. - If water is not available then eat a candy or a sweet. - Make a habit of drinking enough water everyday. Start your day with a glass of water and then drink a glass every hour. It will rev   up your metabolism too if you have adequate water and can help weight loss. - Eat foods which contain water naturally. Fruits and vegetables are a rich source and nutritious.

Reasons You Should Drink Sugarcane Juice This Summer

Dr. Richa Garg, Ayurveda
The summers seem to be beating down on us and with the heat come diseases like heatstrokes and bouts of dehydration. But there is one summer drink that can help you overcome the sweltering heat and other diseases in a jiffy – sugarcane juice.Here are 10 reasons you should have a glass of sugarcane juice everyday this summer.Is a potent energy booster:Sugarcane contains a large amount of glucose along with other compounds. The glucose and other electrolytes make it an instant pick-me-up. Not only does it give you that instant boost of energy, but if drunk when cold, it helps cool down the body during the harsh summers.Fights against cancerSugarcane is packed with antioxidants that have a very potent effect on the body. According to a study, Phytochemistry,  flavones present in sugarcane juice are highly effective in stopping the production and spread of cancerous cells. Another study found that the juice was especially effective in curbing the onset and spread prostate and breast cancer.Beats dehydrationThe summer heat and high amount of humidity make one very prone to dehydration. But sugarcane juice can definitely thwart that ill effect of the summers. Packed with a high concentration of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and manganese, sugarcane juice acts a perfect drink to replenish lost electrolytes and water.Helps your kidneys function better and beats urinary tract infections:Sugarcane juice contains a large amount of proteins, making it perfect to help your kidneys function optimally. Moreover it is alkaline in nature and is the perfect antibiotic agent. Apart from that, when had in a diluted form (diluted with water or coconut water) it works perfectly to relieve the pain and burning sensation most people experience during a bout of urinary tract infection.Is a potent antioxidant:According to a study, researchers found that the compounds present in sugarcane juice has the ability to not only scavenge free radicals, but also reduced the production of iron complex and inhibit lipid peroxidation – all processes that lead to the deterioration of the body and its organsKeeps your liver healthySugarcane is known to keep your bilirubin levels in check, that is one of the reasons that this juice is used in Ayurveda to treat conditions like jaundice. But, apart from that, sugarcane has a protective effect on the liver as well. Sugarcane juice actually helps protect the liver from damage and acts as a palliative to a damaged liver. So, if you have been on a binge drinking spree, have suffered from jaundice, or just want to care for your liver, have a glass of sugarcane juice everyday.Acts an effective digestive agentSugarcane juice has large amounts of potassium in it, making it the perfect agent to aid in digestion. The potassium also acts as an antimicrobial agent – protecting your stomach from infections – and improve peristalsis (the movement of food through the stomach).Gives you healthy skin:Packed with a compounds called alphahydroxy acid and glycolic acid, sugarcane is an elixir for the skin. It not only helps reduce acne, but also reduces the appearance of blemishes, prevents ageing and keeps your skin hydrated. The glycolic acid is especially known for its instant benefits when applied on the skin. So the next time you see a pimple on your face, don’t panic, just apply some sugarcane juice to it. You can also add it to your favorite mask or face pack and use it as a scrub too.Helps fight bad breath and other common infections:Due to the high mineral content, potassium and alkaline nature, sugarcane makes a very effective antimicrobial agent. The minerals present in the juice keep the teeth healthy and the other agents prevent tooth decay due to infections. It is also known to boost one’s immunity and keep common infections at bay.

Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)

Dr. Naman Ajudiya, Ayurveda
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the term for a range of conditions caused by a build-up of fat in the liver. It's usually seen in people who are overweight or obese. A healthy liver should contain little or no fat. It's estimated that up to one in every three people in the UK has early stages of NAFLD where there are small amounts of fat in their liver. Early-stage NAFLD doesn't usually cause any harm, but it can lead to serious liver damage, including cirrhosis, if it gets worse. Having high levels of fat in your liver is also associated with an increased risk of problems such as diabetes, heart attacks and strokes.If detected and managed at an early stage, it's possible to stop NAFLD getting worse and reduce the amount of fat in your liver.  NAFLD develops in four main stages. Most people will only ever develop the first stage, usually without realising it. In small number of cases it can progress and eventually lead to liver damage if not detected and managed. The main stages of NAFLD are Simple fatty liver (steatosis) – a largely harmless build-up of fat in the liver cells that may only be diagnosed during tests carried out for another reason non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) – a more serious form of NAFLD, where the liver has become inflamed this is estimated to affect up to 5% of the UK population   fibrosis – where persistent inflammation causes scar tissue around the liver and nearby blood vessels, but the liver is still able to function normally    cirrhosis – the most severe stage, occurring after years of inflammation, where the liver shrinks and becomes scarred and lumpy; this damage is permanent and can lead to liver failure (where your liver stops working properly) and liver cancer It can take years for fibrosis or cirrhosis to develop. It's important to make lifestyle changes to prevent the disease from getting worse.Am I at risk of NAFLD?You're at an increased risk of NAFLD if you are obese or overweight particularly if you have a lot of fat around your waist (an "apple-like" body shape)    have type 2 diabetes    have high blood pressure    have high cholesterol   over the age of 50    smoke However, NAFLD has been diagnosed in people without any of these risk factors, including young children. Although it's very similar to alcohol-related liver disease (ARLD), NAFLD isn't caused by drinking too much alcohol. Symptoms of NAFLD There aren't usually any symptoms of NAFLD in the early stages. You probably won't know you have it unless it's diagnosed during tests carried out for another reason. Occasionally, people with NASH or fibrosis (more advanced stages of the disease) may experience a dull or aching pain in the top right of the tummy (over the lower right side of the ribs)fatigue (extreme tiredness) unexplained weight loss    weakness If cirrhosis (the most advanced stage) developsyou can get more severe symptoms such as yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes (jaundice) itchy skin swelling in the legs, ankles, feet or tummy.How NAFLD is diagnosed NAFLD is often diagnosed after a blood test called a liver function test produces an abnormal result and other liver conditions, such as hepatitis, are ruled out. However, blood tests don't always pick up NAFLD.The condition may also be spotted during an ultrasound scan of your tummy. This is a type of scan where sound waves are used to create an image of the inside of your body. If you're diagnosed with NAFLD, further tests may be needed to determine which stage you have. This may involve a special blood test or having another type of ultrasound scan (Fibroscan). Some people may also need a small sample of liver tissue (biopsy) taken using a needle to have it analysed in a laboratory.Treatment for NAFLDMost people with NAFLD won't develop any serious problems, but if you're diagnosed with the condition it's a good idea to take steps to stop it getting any worse. There's currently no specific medication for NAFLD, but making healthy lifestyle choices can help and treatment may be recommended for associated conditions (high blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol) or complications.You may be advised to have regular appointments with your doctor to check your liver function and look for signs of any new problems.Healthy diet and lifestyle Adopting a healthy lifestyle is the main way of managing NAFLD. The following can all help  Lose weight – you should aim for a BMI of 18.5-24.9; use the BMI calculator to work out your BMI. Losing more than 10% of your weight can remove some fat from the liver and improve NASH if you have it.    Eat a healthy diet – try to have a balanced diet high in fruits, vegetables, protein and carbohydrates, but low in fat, sugar and salt. Eating smaller portions of food can help too.    Exercise regularly – aim to do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity, such as walking or cycling, a week. All types of exercise can help improve NAFLD, even if you don't lose weight.    Stop smoking – if you smoke, stopping can help reduce your risk of problems such as heart attacks and strokes.NAFLD isn't caused by alcohol, but drinking may make the condition worse. It's therefore advisable to cut down or stop drinking alcohol.MedicationSome Helpful Herbs Bhumyamalaki – Phyllanthus niruriAmalaki – Emblica officinalisSharapunka – Tephrosia purpureaKatuki – Picrorrhiza kurroaPunarnava – Boerhavia diffusaKakamachi – Solanum 

Drinking – What’s the Cost?

Ms. Raisa Luther, Psychotherapist
Counting the cost of alcohol addiction can be a real an eye-opener!It is very important for persons who are drinking too much, or for his or her loved ones to fully understand the damages their addiction is causing.If you check out the costs of alcoholism, it may help get the alcoholic into treatment or urge his or her family members to seek professional intervention.Some persons balk at the cost of treatment. However, once you look at the cost of continued addiction, treatment looks like the most valuable option.So let’s look at the real cost of alcoholism:Health problemsAlcohol is absorbed into your bloodstream and subsequently affects all parts of your body. Beginning with the brain – when it hits the brain, that’s what it means getting ‘high’ or getting the ‘buzz’. Every small peg of alcohol kills thousands of brain cells – irreversibly. Long term alcohol abusers have difficulty in remembering due to memory loss, have lack of concentration and impaired judgement.The drinker’s liver is one of the first victims. Excessive intake of alcohol makes the liver unable to break down the harmful substances. Continued alcohol abuse can lead to serious liver diseases including sclerosis.Alcohol commonly causes stomach problems such as ulcers, bloating and excess gas. Your heart too gets under strain – it has to work that much harder to keep the body functioning. Though the cardiovascular system is extremely powerful and resilient, but like everything it has limits. That’s why alcoholics are prone to irregular heartbeats, strokes and heart attacks.Alcoholism also damages the nervous system. It can cause sexual dysfunction. For men it can lead to impotence, women infertility issues.Other serious problems associated with excessive alchol intake are: problems with teeth and gums, bowel issues and ulcers.There are over 46 diseases directly related to alcoholism. Alcoholics need to spend more time in hospitals, experience loss of pay when they are absent from work. Some, of course, land at the graveyard early.Impact on personal relationshipsWhile the loud and dysfunctional behaviour of the alcoholic may make friends avoid him or her in social settings, it’s the personal relationships that take a huge beating.The alcoholic destroys his or her family unity, causes extreme stress, grief, anguish and hearbreak to those who love him or her dearly. Family members live in constant fear and suffer from long-term emotional and psychological damage.Even love has its limits. The near and dear ones will ultimately give up or harbour deep resentments.As often happens, the partner abandons the alcoholic. This causes the alcoholic to hit the bottle with more vigour and vengeance, leading to further loneliness and devastation.Financial lossYou don’t need rocket science to get this. Boozing is expensive. Not just the cost of the booze, but the things that along with it. Going out with drinking buddies, grandiose spending, medical costs, and absenteeism at work – all these add up to a huge cost. The same amount could have been spent on family welfare, housing improvement, holidays, investments, and personal growth.For the alcoholic, drinking becomes the Number 1 priority. It not only ruins the bank balance, but adversely affects all areas of the alcoholic’s life. Alcohol becomes all-consuming and whatever it costs to fund your drinking will be spent over and above other financial responsibilities.Stop counting the cost of alcohol addiction – start seeking helpThose who cross the line from social drinking to alcohol abuse need help. Alcohol rehabs are effective in rebuilding the lives of alcoholics and their families. The cost involved is nothing compared to what the alcoholic is bound to lose if he doesn’t stop.If you wish to save someone from further deterioration, get in touch with a rehab. Most of the rehabs have outpatient, residential and online therapy options for addiction recovery.

Workout Drinks! Look Into Your Kitchen

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Have you ever wondered why people carry energy drinks or bars to the gym for an hour of workout? Sometimes gyms also promote the sale of such products reinforcing the importance of these energy stimulants for the workouts. Does this habit help you burn more calories or add calories instead of burning them?We also agree that when you exercise the body gets tired, dehydrated and requires fluid to replenish the ones lost through sweating. Being dehydrated can sap your energy and make you feel tired. Dehydration is what promotes fatigue, muscle weakness, dizziness and other symptoms.But did you know that these symptoms can instantly be addressed by simply drinking plain water as well as adding some healthy drinks to your diet? And you don't need fancy drinks or juices to replenish the water loss.Let us take you behind the scenes and make you understand why energy drink is important and what is the best energy drink to have during and after workout.Why energy drink?Energy drinks on which we will be focussing are mainly home prepared drinks. The focus won’t be on packaged stuff.Let’s understand this with an example. An average mid-intensity workout in the gym for about 60 minutes can burn upto 300-400 calories with a combination of cardio & strength training. (Just for your knowledge a good mid-intensity workout should translate into 15 minutes of running, 30 minutes of strength training and 15 minutes of cool down & stretching.)Every time you substitute water with energy drinks you can be setting yourself back by at least 200-300 calories per bottle. This impulsive energy drink intake while you are trying to lose weight can sometimes add more calories than actually burning them. This could also be the reason why you might not be losing weight in spite of being regular with your exercise routine.Therefore, there are some reasons which would surely change your perception why energy drink is necessary and what are the drinks which we should consider as an energy drink.During workoutWhen you are working out, you are more likely to lose water through sweat or through breath. And if you get dehydrated, your body starts responding in the following manner:DizzinessLethargyYou get cramps easilyYour muscles won’t work efficientlyThis is because water plays an important role in leading chemical reactions in our body. And once it's % goes down, our body quickly comes to dehydration mode and it starts affecting our muscles and lowers down the body's  efficiency.Therefore to get rid of all these symptoms, you can easily rely on this fluid for good energy. Now, the question arises, how much water should you drink, during and after your workout?Make sure, you have enough of it before you start the workout. This doesn’t mean that you keep on drinking gallons of water. It could be just 2 to 3 cups (morning workout). Make sure you keep on sipping the water throughout the day.Carry a bottle to keep yourself hydrated during the workout.All through the day, you can just drink recommended level of water. Probably 8 to 10 glasses. You don't have to keep on drinking but just make sure you have a full water bottle handy and drink whenever you are thirsty.You can even experiment with the water by adding lemon and basil leaves to restore vitamins and minerals in your body.Post workoutWe generally talk about water, when it comes to energy. Yes it's true, being a natural drink, it has numerous health benefits.A combination of protein and carbs which not only gives you energy from intense workout, but also helps to repair your muscles. In short, these drinks would provide fuel to your muscles so that they can work more efficiently the entire day.Fruit smoothie - It's a blend of fruits, curd, nuts and sometimes milk. Lots of antioxidants, fiber, protein, calcium - all in one. Read more to know about hidden calories in fruit smoothies.Badam Milk - Either you can churn almonds and milk together or you can take a glass of milk with handful of almonds. Both work really well if you are looking for a healthy energy drink. It will give you immense fullness and most importantly - not too many calories.Know more about which is the healthiest Nut?We have always insisted that for best weight loss results it is important to watch what you eat & exercise at the same time. Just by exercising and eating whatever comes your way will not help you achieve your desired weight. Probably that’s the reason why you see a lot of morning walkers even though regular with their daily routine, still look unfit simply because they forget to add healthy eating as a part of their daily routine.

Lassi - the Healthy Drink!

Ms. Ashu Gupta, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Here are 5 reasons why Lassi is our own secretly awesome Health Drink!It fights body heatButtermilk or ‘chaas’ is an outstanding coolant which reduces the heat of the body, especially during the very high temperature in summer. It is rich in electrolytes and packed with a lot of water and thus is very efficient in fighting dehydration. It contains a high quantity of lactic acid which boosts the immune system and prepares it to combat diseases of various kinds. Drinking buttermilk on a regular basis can help to keep the body heat in check and provide relief to the body.It improves digestionButtermilk or ‘chaas’ is a probiotic of nature and contains ‘gut friendly’ bacteria which aid in the digestive process. The jeera, pepper and ginger in buttermilk are all magnificent digestive agents. They are well known for their properties of carmation and when combined together in buttermilk, they make one of the most effective natural digestives. Drinking ‘chaas’  gives instant relief from a bout of digestive problems.It is best for acidity‘Chaas’ or buttermilk is prepared with watered-down curd and is perfect for soothing the stomach. As it is consumed, the buttermilk washes down the spices in the food and calms an inflamed stomach lining. It helps the stomach to get rid of acids that cause indigestion and heartburn. The curry leaves, pepper and jeera present in buttermilk relieve the stomach of any irritation suffered after consumption of spicy food.It strengthens the body’s immune system The excellent lactic acid and vitamin D present in ‘chaas’ or buttermilk helps to fight bacteria and harmful pathogens which enter the body through different external agents. The vitamin B12 present in buttermilk aids in synthesizing the amino and fatty acids and fights stress and anemia. It also converts glucose into energy and promotes the growth of the nerve cells. The probiotic  properties of buttermilk makes the body’s immune system strong and helps it to fight against infections, common colds, and other ailments.It helps in the weight loss processButtermilk is a popular drink among calorie-conscious people. It is often included as a part of weight-loss diets because it contains all the nutrients that are vital for our body, whereas it has low amounts of calories and does not hold fats. It washes down the fat which usually covers the inside walls of the stomach and food pipe and makes a person feel lighter in an instant.

Are You Obsessing Over an Alcoholic?

Ms. Raisa Luther, Psychotherapist
The family members of an alcoholic also get ‘addicted’.They spend as much time obsessing over the behavior of the alcoholic as the addict does over his drinking. He keeps worrying about where he is going to get his next drink; family worries about when he is going to drink next. He tries desperately to control his drinking; family members desperately try to control his drinking. If you are able to see this type of behaviour, you are ready to get on the road to changing your behaviors. Let’s try doing a small quiz to see if you have an obsession problem.1. Do you ever chase the alcoholic, searching for his or his car? 2. When the alcoholic doesn't come home do you begin to analyze and check where they might be drinking? 3. When you are near them do you try to smell if they have consumed alcohol? 4. When they tell you they are working late or attending a meeting, do you obsess over whether they are telling the truth? 5. Do you go through their things/ rooms to see if they are hiding the bottles somewhere? 6. Do you experience constant anxiety and worry about when or where they will be drunk again? These are just a few of the things that will help you determine whether or not you are obsessing over the alcoholic in your life. It’s a habit that can be broken. Breaking the habit will require changing your way of thinking.Break the habit!Here are a few steps for breaking the habit of obsessing over an alcoholic:1. Start attending Al-anon meetings in your neighborhood. Don’t just attend the meetings – make friends.2. Talk a lot on the phone to such friends. 3. Start doing things that you enjoy and may have stopped due to your obsession with the alcoholic’s condition. . Go to the movies or mall, take long walks in the park or join a Yoga class. Just get busy enjoying life and stop worrying about what the alcoholic/addict is doing all of the time. 4. Don’t look at the alcoholic when they walk in the door to see if they are drunk or not, and stop smelling them for signs of alcohol consumption. 5. Read books or browse the net when they come home to help you keep your attention on something other than them. 6. Let them go to live their life and then you start living yours. You are powerless over the alcoholic – you can’t change him with your obsessive control strategies. 7. Just go to sleep when the alcoholic doesn't come home late at night. There’s nothing you can do about it anyway. 8. Remind yourself that your obsession is not helping the situation. It is only causing more stress in you.9. Get in touch with a professional rehab for alcohol de-addiction treatment. That way, you will bring some hope in your life and get some sound advice about dealing with the situation. The process of breaking the habit of obsessing over another’s behavior is going to take some work and time.This obsession is something that you did not suddenly fall into and it’s going to take time to get out of this habit. Just take it one day at a time and soon you will notice that you have not been obsessing about the alcoholic. After all, it is your life. Live it.

Time to Clean Up Your Body

Dr. Renu Garg, Homeopath
The festivities are over now and you find yourself a few kilos heavier along with lethargic feeling. We all tend to overload our systems during this season. Indulgence has been at its peak and what we probably need right now is to detox and clean up with right nutrition to spring back to normal. Try to follow following tips so that we will feel more energetic and can improve our overall health:Start your day by drinking warm water with a lemon squeezed in it.Keep yourself hydrated with plain water, coconut water, green tea. Fluids flush out all the toxins. Add a little mint, cinnamon, lemon or apple slices for flavour.Post-Diwali cut down on packaged foods, sugar, refined flour and baked items. Instead take jaggery, whole grain atta, brown rice in your diet.Have more fruits and veggies which leave you a feeling fuller for long and make a point of eating different types and colours.Don't give longer gaps in between two meals (not more than four hours) and take some kind of protein in every meal which will keep blood sugar levels stable and curb unwanted cravings.Chew each mouthful slowly, focusing on your food and eat until only about three quarters of the stomach is full. Some breakfast options are oats with milk/wholegrain porridge/vegetable daliya/fruit platter.Some lunch options are salads and yogurt, brown rice khichdi or brown rice with lots of vegetables/ whole grain rotis with lightly cooked vegetables. Some dinner options are spinach soup/dal soup and salad with some protein Some snacking options are steamed lentils/ smoothies/ green tea and fruits / buttermilk/ tofu snacks/ nuts etc.