Navratri is among India’s favourite festivals, dedicated to the nine forms of Goddess Durga. It’s marked by loads of colour, dance, and merriment. On the other hand, Navratri also involves delving into one’s spiritual side and cultivating qualities of ‘sattva’ like purity, positivity, and devotion. Fasting is a powerful way to do so. Ayurveda considers fasting an excellent technique of detoxifying, refreshing, and ultimately strengthening both the body and mind. But it stresses on fasting responsibly. So, we’ve put together a list of valuable fasting tips for Navratri 2017.
Why do People Fast?
- Fasting eliminates toxins and purifies the body.
- It gives the digestive system some time off, and helps boost the digestive fire (agni).
- It brings a feeling of lightness.
- When done during periods of seasonal change, it boosts immunity.
- It improves complexion.
- It refreshes, calms, and destresses the mind.
A Bunch of Healthy Fasting Tips for Navratri 2017
- If you’re wondering what to eat during a fast for breakfast, fresh and organic fruits are a great option since they’ll provide you with fuel.
- Citrus fruits like oranges are cleansing and thus support the purpose of fasting.
- Go for power-packed fruits like apples, papayas, and bananas.
- Dried fruits like dates are loaded with nutrients.
- Grab a handful of nuts like almonds and walnuts.
- A glass of cow milk makes a complete morning meal too.
- Remember to not combine milk with citrus fruits or bananas.
For Small Meals…
- Fasting isn’t about starving. During Navratri, eat super-light meals frequently to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
- Choose grains like amaranth (rajgira), buckwheat (kuttu), and sago (sabudana).
- However, avoid eating too many grains during the initial days.
- You can eat veggies like sweet potato, bottlegourd, and pumpkin.
- Combine carbs like amaranth with fibre-rich ingredients like spinach.
- Steam, roast or boil your food instead of frying it. Fried potatoes aren’t a good option at all!
- Swap common salt for rock salt since it provides much better nutrition.
- Don’t use garlic, onion, turmeric, mustard, or asafoetida.
- Don’t use lentils, since they aren’t generally allowed.
- But you can eat curd and curd-based dishes.
- Don’t ignore food cravings – they are your body’s calls for more energy.
- Keep a box of nuts and fruits handy like raisins, almonds, dates, and apples.
- On the other hand, avoid fried and salt-loaded snacks.
For Your Sweet Tooth…
- It’s natural to desire something sweet during the festive season. But stay away from processed sugar.
- But feel free to indulge in desserts made with natural alternatives such as honey, jaggery, stevia, and dates.
- Since dairy is allowed during Navratri, you can have almond milk sweetened with honey, and naturally sweetened curd.
Let’s Not Forget Fluids!
- Last, but certainly not the least on our list of important fasting tips is liquids.
- This is super-important not only to keep you well-hydrated, but to also give you the feeling of fullness.
- Moreover, water on an empty stomach promotes healthy detoxification.
- Always keep a bottle of water with you when you fast.
- Sip on healthy drinks like sugarcane juice, coconut water, lemon juice, and fresh fruit juices with no added white sugar.
- You can also have warm milk.
- Vegetable soups are also hydrating as well as nourishing.
- Eat hydrating fruits like watermelon and oranges.