India is known as the land of festivals and Diwali is one of the most celebrated, auspicious and cultural festivals where people gather together with relatives, friends, and neighbors and celebrate very enthusiastically.
Diwali symbolizes the victory of truth over evil, light over darkness. It is the day Lord Rama returned to his kingdom, Ayodhya after 14 years of exile. People of Ayodhya had welcomed their King Ram by enlightening the entire kingdom with candles. The myths say that the whole kingdom was lit up to welcome Lord Ram.
During Diwali, you can see the entire country lit up. People clean their houses and offices. It is believed that lighting candles/lamps everywhere make way for Goddess Lakshmi to come to the house and give her blessings, wealth and prosperity.
People celebrate this festival by exchanging gifts, being with family and feasting. Since it’s also a festival of sweets, people end up eating lots of highly saturated sweets and food which affects one's health negatively. But alternatively, we could make some very healthy sweet options. We will give out a recipe to you :
Leave them to cool down and settle. This is a great sweet with all better quality ingredients and also very easy to make at home. Each lad would be below 100 calories.
If you’re conscious about fitness, you have to avoid binging on sweets and fried/fatty snacks. Due to the increase in demand for sweets, there is also an increase in food adulteration around Diwali which affects our health more so one must be very careful.
During Diwali people end up taking in countless calories due to social engagements. Since it’s such a busy time of the year, you should schedule your day in a way that you are able to work out and stay healthy. If you cannot hit the gym, you can always do your routine exercise at home. You could wake up and do yoga or meditate which will strike the right balance, relax your body and keep you motivated and energetic the whole day.
Diwali makes it very difficult to resist all those sweets, the barfis, gulab jamuns, soft motichoor ke ladoo etc. We think, “It’s okay, it’s Diwali”, but in reality, it’s not okay because it becomes very hard to lose all the weight you end up putting on during the festivities. What one can do to not feel left out is make sweets at home which are healthy. Avoid indulgence in sugary and oily delicacies to avoid acidity and indigestion.
Choose the right ingredients that are low in fat and sugar content. Be vigilant about not getting tricked by the “low-fat” label on your products. In case, you are buying sweets from the market, you can choose the sweets that are sugar-free and fat-free. When you absolutely want to eat you can also eat dried fruits to avoid all the fat and sugar and reduce your calorie intake.
Diwali is also known as the festival of “giving and sharing”. It is that time of the year when you gift sweets to your friends and relatives. There is always an option to switch to low fat or sugar-free sweets. These days, sweet shops also make special organic sweets which need to be pre-ordered. So, plan well and make a conscious decision of eating healthy and right for your good health, as well as your near and dear ones by opting for healthier options.
Here is a recipe of how you could make fat-free barfi at home -
Ingredients - (for 10 servings)
- 2 tablespoon canola oil/ rapeseed oil
- 3/4 cup and 1 and 1/4 tablespoon low-fat milk
- 4 green cardamom
- 4 teaspoon brown sugar
- 3/4 cup and 2 teaspoons skimmed milk powder
Step 1 - Take a heavy-based pan and heat 1 tbsp oil in it. Now gently add brown sugar to it.
Step 2 - Stir the sugar continuously, for over 3-5 minutes, until the sugar is melted completely
Step 3 - Now add the skimmed milk and stir it gently. Now, add the cardamom seeds and mix it properly.
Step 4 - Now pour your milk powder mixture and continue stirring it for another 5 to 7 minutes.
Step 5 - As soon as you see that the mixture has become stiff and is leaving the sides of the pan, pour the mixture on a greaseproof paper and let it stand for a couple of minutes.
Step 6 - Let the mixture cool. Now use a sharp knife and cut the mixture into neat inch squares.
The barfi is ready to serve!
Almond - Cashew - Coconut and Jaggery Laddoos
We need the following
- Grated Coconut
- Jaggery about 100 grams. ( In the Winters jaggery is available in abundance )
- Crushed almonds and Cashews about 40 grams.
Now let's get into how we have to make this :
Step 1 : Melt the Jaggery by putting it on a pan over a stove. Make sure you heat this till you see it boiling.
Step 2 : Add the coconut and the crushed Almonds and cashews. Mix them with a ladle.
Step 3 : The final step to this process would be to make balls of this mixture.
Amidst all the activities during the festivities don’t forget to keep a tab on your sleep. Lack of sleep can lead to several health problems and may ruin the occasion for you. Thus, make sure you get 6-8 hours of sleep which will keep you fit for the rest of the day.
Red Cheri Fitness Movement believes that one should never compromise on health at any point. Fitness is a very important part of life, however, it’s alright to take things a little easy during the festive season since everybody is in the mood to have a good time. These tips and suggestions aren't to stop you from having fun but will get you through the most delicious sweets and savories.
This Diwali, stay fit and stay safe.