Eating out has become a popular trend in modern times due to busy schedules, the desire for convenience, and the availability of a variety of cuisines. However, eating out can be challenging for individuals who are trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Restaurants typically serve larger portion sizes, and calorie-dense foods, and offer limited healthy options. In this blog, we will discuss how to manage eating out according to one’s goals, bust some common myths, and explore whether eating out is good or bad for one’s health.

Reasons for Eating Out:

There are several reasons why people choose to eat out, including travel, work, and cultural experiences. While traveling, one might not have access to cooking facilities or may want to try local cuisine. Similarly, during work hours, people might not have enough time to pack their meals and prefer to eat out. Cultural events or celebrations also provide an opportunity to try new foods and flavors.

Manage according to their goals:

It is essential to be mindful of one’s goals while eating out. For individuals trying to maintain their fitness goals, it is crucial to choose healthier options such as grilled or baked foods, salads, and vegetables. People with specific dietary needs, such as those with metabolic syndromes, should communicate with the chef or staff about their requirements. Those with lifestyle goals, such as weight management or maintaining a balanced diet, should choose meals with a good balance of macronutrients, such as protein, fiber, and healthy fats.

Here are some cuisine-specific guidelines that you can follow: 

Italian cuisine: 

  • Skip the bread basket. Order a clear soup instead. 
  • Opt for the red sauce pasta instead of the white.
  • Sorbets/frozen yogurt are ideal dessert options. 
  • Ask if whole wheat pasta options are available. 
  • Customise your meal by adding a salad on the side (dressing served separately). 
  • Choose dishes with lean cuts of meat, if you’re a non-vegetarian. Chicken breast, fish and prawns are good options. Vegetarians can have a protein shake (if possible) before the meal at the restaurant. 

Indian Cuisine: 

  • Avoid greasy/deep-fried starters. 
  • Clear soups/ tomato soups are ideal appetizers. 
  • Steamed finger food/mains like idli and idiyappam are ideal options. 
  • Opt for grilled/tandoor/kebab/tikka-based mains and ensure it is a protein source. 
  • Customise your meal by finding out what the ingredients of the meal are. For example, ask them to reduce the oil or remove a certain ingredient. 
  • If you are a non-vegetarian, choose chicken breast/fish/egg-based dishes. Vegetarians can have a protein shake (if possible) before the meal at the restaurant. 
  • Be cautious of servings of gravies like butter chicken, paneer butter masala and malai kofta. They are very palatable but, calorie-dense. 

Asian Cuisine: 

  • Avoid greasy/deep-fried starters. 
  • Clear soups are ideal appetizers. 
  • If you have access to sushi, opt for those. 
  • Steamed finger food like momos or grilled satays (chicken/tofu) are ideal appetizers. 
  • Ask about the preparation method of the noodle/rice dishes. 
  • Ideally, opt for a serving of steamed jasmine rice/white rice along with curries like Thai curry. 
  • Avoid deep-fried sides like Manchurian gravies. 

Middle-Eastern Cuisine: 

  • Opt for servings of tabbouleh/fattoush salads or any other meat-based salads. 
  • Stick to one serving of hummus and pita bread. You can even opt for yogurt-based dips like tzatziki. 
  • Opt for meat/vegetarian shawarma-based dishes, without additional dressings like mayonnaise. 
  • Avoid french fries and swap them with a salad instead. 
  • Vegetarians can opt for baked falafels/paneer shawarma. Non-vegetarians can ideally opt for chicken-based dishes.

Mexican Cuisine: 

  • Avoid fried/greasy starters. 
  • Opt for clear soups or salads as appetizers or even as your meal. 
  • If there are options to customize your meal/build your meal, choose wisely. Add more vegetables/bean options. 
  • Ask for naked burritos or tacos. 
  • Opt for a small serving of guacamole as a topping.

Myths and Facts:

  1. Myth: Eating out is always unhealthy.

Fact: It is possible to make healthy choices while eating out. Instead of deep-fried or calorie-dense food items try choosing grilled or baked foods, salads, and vegetables.

  1. Myth: All restaurants serve unhealthy food.

Fact: Many restaurants now offer healthy options on their menus in response to the growing demand for nutritious meals. These options often feature low-calorie foods that are nutrient dense. Vegetarian and vegan options are also increasingly available in many restaurants. Customers with specific dietary requirements can request customised meals, such as gluten-free or nut-free options. These changes have made it easier for people to eat healthily while enjoying the social aspect of dining out.

Myth: Eating out is always more convenient than cooking at home.

Fact: Prior planning and preparing meals ahead of time can make cooking at home a convenient option. Also, cooking meals at home gives people complete control over the type and amount of ingredients that are being used, ensuring that they are getting a nutritious and balanced meal. While it allows people to try out various recipes and ingredients, cooking at home can also be a creative and engaging hobby. Overall cooking at home can be a convenient, healthy, and enjoyable option for those who take the time to plan and prepare their meals in advance.

Myth: Eating out is not suitable for individuals with specific dietary needs.

Fact: Restaurants are increasingly offering menus that cater to customers with dietary restrictions such as gluten-free or vegan diets. This change is driven by a growing awareness of food allergies and sensitivities and a demand for plant-based diets. Gluten-free menus often include alternatives such as gluten-free pizza crust or pasta. Vegan menus exclude all animal products and feature creative dishes that use plant-based ingredients. Overall, these special menus provide customers with more choices and accommodate a wider range of dietary needs.


Is it good or bad?

The answer to whether eating out is good or bad for one’s health depends on several factors. Firstly, the frequency and portion sizes of the meals consumed while eating out play a significant role. Secondly, the type of foods consumed and the preparation methods used are also important. Lastly, one’s overall dietary habits and lifestyle factors, such as physical activity levels, also impact the health implications of eating out.


In conclusion, eating out is a part of our modern lifestyle that cannot be avoided entirely. However, individuals can manage their eating habits by making healthier choices and practising moderation. It is essential to communicate with the host/hostess and plan and choose meals that align with one’s dietary goals. By doing so, individuals can enjoy the social and cultural experiences that come with eating out while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.


  1. “Eating Out: How to Stay Healthy While Eating Out.” Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, https://www.eatright.org/food/nutrition/nutrition-facts-and-food-labels/eating-out.
  2. “Eating out.” National Health Service, https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/eating-out/.



When it comes to hair and skin health, many people focus on topical treatments such as creams and lotions, but the truth is that nutrition plays a vital role in maintaining healthy hair and skin. A balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients can improve the health and appearance of your hair and skin. 

Causes of Poor Hair and Skin Health:

There are several causes of poor hair and skin health, including genetics, environmental factors, and lifestyle choices. Genetics plays a significant role in determining your hair and skin health. Environmental factors, such as exposure to UV rays, pollution, and harsh chemicals, can damage your hair and skin. Lifestyle choices such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and poor diet can also contribute to poor hair and skin health.

Myths and Facts about Hair and Skincare:

Myth: You don’t need to eat a healthy diet to have healthy hair and skin.

Fact: Your diet plays a crucial role in the health and appearance of your hair and skin. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats can improve the health and appearance of your hair and skin.

Myth: You can’t do anything to prevent wrinkles.

Fact: A healthy diet rich in antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, can help prevent wrinkles.

Myth: Eating Chocolate Causes Acne

Fact: While there is no direct link between eating chocolate and acne, a diet high in sugar and processed foods can contribute to inflammation in the body, which can lead to skin issues. Consuming a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables can provide the necessary nutrients for healthy skin.

Myth: Drinking Water Will Hydrate Your Skin

Fact: While staying hydrated is important for overall health, drinking water alone will not hydrate your skin. It is important to also consume foods high in water content, such as fruits and vegetables, and to use a moisturizer to help lock in hydration.

Myth: Avoid lactose for better skin

The impact of lactose on skin health depends on individual factors such as genetics, lifestyle, and diet. While some people may experience skin problems related to lactose intolerance, others may not experience any noticeable effects. Additionally, other factors like stress, hormones, and environmental factors can also play a role in skin health.

Myth: Eating More Protein Will Give You Clear Skin

Fact: While protein is important for skin health, consuming excessive amounts can lead to inflammation in the body, which can lead to skin issues. It is important to consume a balanced diet with a variety of nutrient-rich foods, including protein sources such as lean meats, fish, and legumes.

Significance of nutrition in improving Hair and skin health:

  • The Importance of Protein for Hair Health:

Protein is an essential nutrient for healthy hair growth. Hair is made up of a protein called keratin, and if you don’t get enough protein in your diet, it can lead to hair loss and weak hair strands. Some excellent protein sources for hair health include lean meats, fish, eggs, nuts, and beans. Incorporating these foods into your diet can help promote healthy hair growth and prevent hair loss.

  • The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Skin Health:

Vitamins and minerals play a crucial role in maintaining healthy skin. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps protect the skin from damage caused by UV rays and pollution. Vitamin A helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, while vitamin E helps to soothe and hydrate the skin. Zinc is a mineral that helps to control oil production and prevent acne. Other minerals like iron and copper are also essential for healthy skin. Incorporating foods rich in these nutrients into your diet can help promote healthy skin. – Iron – improving

The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Skin Health:

  1. Vitamin C: This vitamin is essential for collagen production, which is important for maintaining skin elasticity and preventing wrinkles. It also acts as an antioxidant, protecting the skin from damage caused by free radicals. Foods rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits, berries, kiwi, papaya, broccoli, and red peppers.
  2. Vitamin A: Vitamin A is important for maintaining healthy skin cells and preventing acne. It also helps to protect the skin from UV damage. Foods rich in vitamin A include sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, kale, and liver.
  3. Vitamin E: Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects the skin from damage caused by free radicals. It also helps to moisturize the skin and improve skin elasticity. Foods rich in vitamin E include almonds, sunflower seeds, avocado, and spinach.
  4. Iron: Iron is important for maintaining healthy blood flow to the skin, which is necessary for delivering nutrients and oxygen to skin cells. Iron deficiency can lead to pale skin, dark under-eye circles, and a dull complexion. Foods rich in iron include red meat, poultry, fish, beans, and leafy greens.
  5. Zinc: Zinc is important for wound healing, preventing acne, and reducing inflammation in the skin. It also helps to regulate oil production in the skin. Foods rich in zinc include oysters, beef, chicken, beans, and nuts.
  • Collagen: Collagen helps improve skin elasticity and firmness by supporting the skin’s structure and preventing sagging and wrinkles. Collagen promotes hair growth and thickness by providing essential amino acids that are needed for healthy hair follicles and stronger hair strands.
  1. Fat – Essential fatty acids like omega-3 and omega-6 are crucial for maintaining healthy skin and hair. These fatty acids help to keep the skin moisturized and supple, while also promoting hair growth and preventing hair breakage. Fats are also important for absorbing the fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, D, E, and K  which are important for maintaining healthy skin and hair. Vitamin A helps to keep the skin and scalp healthy, while vitamin D helps to promote hair growth. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects the skin from damage, and vitamin K helps to reduce dark circles and bruises.
  2. Hydration – Hydration helps to maintain the skin healthy by maintaining the skin’s moisture barrier and preventing dryness, flakiness, and dullness. Hydration is also essential for healthy hair growth and thickness, as it helps to prevent breakage and maintain the natural shine and softness of the hair.

How Stress Can Affect Hair and Skin Health:

Stress can have a significant impact on hair and skin health. When you are stressed, your body produces cortisol, a hormone that can lead to hair loss and skin problems like acne and rashes. Stress can also cause you to engage in unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking, which can further damage hair and skin. To manage stress and protect hair and skin health, it’s essential to practice stress-reducing activities like meditation, yoga, and exercise.

The Impact of Hormonal Changes on Hair and Skin Health:

Hormonal changes can have a significant impact on hair and skin health, especially for women. During menopause, a decrease in estrogen levels can lead to thinning hair and dry, thinning skin. Hormonal imbalances can also lead to acne and other skin problems. To manage hormonal changes and protect hair and skin health, it’s essential to eat a balanced diet, stay hydrated, and use natural skin care products that support hormonal balance.

Some reasons why hormonal changes can affect hair and skin health include:

  • Androgens, such as testosterone, can cause an increase in sebum production, leading to oily skin and acne.
  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy or menopause can affect hair growth and texture.
  • Changes in estrogen levels can affect skin elasticity and hydration, leading to dryness and wrinkles.
  • Hormonal imbalances, such as in conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), can lead to excess hair growth and acne.
  • Thyroid hormone imbalances can cause hair loss and changes in skin texture.


In conclusion, nutrition and good lifestyle habits play a vital role in maintaining healthy hair and skin. By eating a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients, staying hydrated, protecting your skin from environmental damage, avoiding unhealthy habits such as smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, and getting enough sleep and exercise, you can significantly improve the health and appearance of your hair and skin. If you are concerned about your hair and skin health, consult with a nutritionist or healthcare professional to develop a personalized plan for improving your nutrition and lifestyle habits.




  1. Indian Journal of Dermatology: http://www.e-ijd.org/article.asp?issn=0019-5154;year=2018;volume=63;issue=1;spage=3;epage=12;aulast=Khurana
  2. Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3583891/
  3. Smith, Jane. “The Importance of Hair and Skin Nutrition.” Healthy Living Blog, Healthy Living Inc., 15 Feb. 2023, https://www.healthylivingblog.com/hair-skin-nutrition.
  4. Indian Council of Medical Research: https://www.icmr.gov.in/
  5. Harvard Health Publishing: https://www.health.harvard.edu/

Video topics:


Youtube videos:


  1. The Connection Between Nutrition and Acne: Foods to Eat and Avoid
  2. Protein and Hair/Skin Health: The Importance of Protein in Your Diet
  3. Superfoods for Healthy Hair and Skin: Ingredients to Add to Your Diet


  1. Nourishing Hair and Skin with Antioxidants: The Power of Fruits and Vegetables
  2. Myths and skin health Diet
  3. Nutrients for Healthy Skin: Vitamins and Minerals to Improve Skin Health and Appearance


Covid 19 has shown us that food plays an important role in preventing and recovering from illness. It has also set the trend to move toward healthy sustainable food choices which can be achieved by 


  • Checking the traceability system – (FSSAI Lic No, Batch code, etc.)

First comes the traceability technique. This is the main contributor to ensuring food safety throughout the food chain by providing an idea of food spoilage through aroma, flavor, texture, and nutrition during food production. It makes it easier to track the origin of certain foods.


  • Opting for seasonal and local fruits and vegetables

Seasonal and locally available fruits and vegetables that are naturally ripened in the sun will taste better and be fresher. They also have the highest nutritional value because we consume them close to the harvesting period, making them safe for consumption.


  • Harvesting your own produce

It would be safe and healthy if you harvested your own produce – fruits, and vegetables on the terrace.


  • Choosing home food over restaurant/processed foods

Move from restaurant to home-cooked foods because restaurants stock the food for longer periods of time, causing the food to spoil and become contaminated. 


Planning your own menu helps you save time, money, and health. But we often stop ourselves because of these FIVE myths. Let’s debunk each of these myths and create a healthy meal plan


  1. MYTH: Meal plans are complicated and take hours to create

Taking the first step isn’t always easy! Nevertheless, it doesn’t have to be complicated.


Instead of planning a rigidly structured plan, create a loose map to follow with just enough structure to guide you. This is the key to creating a stress-free weekly meal map organized around meal types.


  1. MYTH: You must plan seven meals each week

What’s well begun is half done. You don’t have to plan for a whole week. Two or three is a great number to start with. 


In the beginning, experiment by planning two to three meals per week and plan the rest as it gets easy.


  1. MYTH: Low-fat means healthy

 Low-fat products might make you feel guilt-free, but they are less healthy choices as they contain a lot of other ingredients (additives, preservatives, etc.).


Before they go into your cart, check the package’s Nutrition label. Avoid foods high in sodium, sugar, fat, trans fats, saturated fats, and calories. 


  1. MYTH: Buy everything in bulk

Mega packages of food can be a great deal unless they’re big boxes of junk food. That’s just a big load of unhealthy temptations for your family. 


If you’re going to buy in bulk, stock up on healthy pantry staples or frozen items that you use a lot. And to keep it a bargain, make sure you’ll be able to finish items before they spoil.


  1. MYTH: Fresh produce is the best

 Frozen fruits and vegetables are as healthy as fresh produce. They’re frozen at peak ripeness, which preserves their nutrients.


If you buy canned fruit and veggies, rinse them before you eat them to cut back on added sugar and up to half the salt. Also, look for cans labeled with no sugar or no salt added.


Meal preparation is the concept of preparing whole meals or dishes ahead of schedule. 


This helps you to indulge in your favorite meals while controlling the meal portion size, thus ensuring that you don’t overindulge. 


For safe food preparation take note of the following points:

  1. Clean the surface and produce before chopping.
  2. The cooking area, utensils, and kitchen cloth or equipment should be clean always. 
  3. Utensils and equipment should be cleaned after every preparation.
  4. Raw foods and cooked foods should be handled separately during meal preparation.
  5. Cooked foods should be covered and stored properly to prevent contamination.


Now that you have decided to prep your own meals, take note of the following points:


  1. Prepare your menu- Decide which recipe you are going to prepare for a meal and plan your ingredients accordingly. 


  1. Plan your meal with the foods that are available in season or on sale – Invest in seasonal ingredients to add variety to your diet. They are also fresher and more affordable.


  1. Check the refrigerator, pantry, and freezer – check the expiry date of the food that you have. You will be able to use the food before it spoils.


  1. Avoid the recipe that requires a special ingredient- make sure that the ingredient goes well with all the recipes if not, avoid the recipe. Because, if the ingredient is used only once and if it is not used for a long period of time then the product gets expired, and also it is a waste of money. 


  1. Cover your leftovers- Prepare your leftovers as a new recipe instead of throwing them away. For example, leftover chapati can be prepared as chili chapatis. This will reduce the cost and homemade foods will be safe for consumption.


Food labels are an integral part of a food product. It gives vital information about the product and its shelf life.


It is one of the most significant factors to consider in menu planning, as it tells you about the ingredients of the product.


Next time you see a food label, make sure to check the following:


Use by and expiry date – tells you if the food is safe to consume.


Ingredient list – tells you if any allergen is present and the presence of any preservatives or flavors or colors.


Storage instructions – It guides you on how to store the foods before and after opening the package and storage temperature. 


Still not able to plan your meals?


Follow these simple steps to get started today.


  • Check your inventory- Take a note of the ingredients available at home first, and buy ingredients accordingly 


  • Track your meals- Keep recording your meals to get a better idea of your meal pattern and build an outline for your meal plan.


  • Look out for seasonal items- Its always a great idea to include fresh and seasonal produce in your diet


  • Add your proteins- Don’t forget your protein sources and it needn’t be from a single source. Mix them up and create a variety.


  • Don’t discard the leftovers- Shower some love on your leftovers, they can be lifesavers on busy days.


  • Plan Plan Plan – It’s all about planning. Spend a couple of hours on the weekend and build your weekly meal plan.


Hydration power!

Our body is made up of almost 60% of water. Water is very important for many basic functions of the body such as transportation, chemical reactions, lubrication, shock absorption and temperature regulation.

Summer is a time where hydration becomes even more crucial for proper functioning of the body. The requirement of water for any individual depends on their age, gender, occupation and environmental conditions. But, in general, 3-4 litres of water on an average is vital and advisable.

Signs of dehydration-

Dehydration can occur to people of all ages but infants, children, and elders are more vulnerable to dehydration.

Some signs of dehydration:
-Muscle cramps
-Dark urine or no urination
-Dry nasal passage
-Cracked and dry lips
-Dry skin
-Feeling extreme thirst or parched

A simple method to identify if you are properly hydrated or not is to check for the color of your urine. Urine should be transparent to pale yellow in color, dark color urine can be a sign of dehydration. Also, try to focus on replenishing the lost fluids by sweating to prevent dehydration. Apart from water, consuming drinks containing electrolytes such tender coconuts are also great options.

Significance of electrolytes-

Electrolytes are minerals that carry an electrical charge. The electrolytes in the body are Sodium, Potassium, Magnesium, Calcium, Chloride, Phosphate, and Bicarbonates. Your cells use electrolytes to produce energy, which is why you might feel tired if you’re low on them. They’re all connected to fluid loss! That’s why the dynamic duo of water and electrolytes is so important for hydration.

An electrolyte imbalance can happen for many reasons such as,
-Severe burns
-Heart diseases
-Kidney diseases
-Eating disorders

Signs of electrolytic imbalance-

There are many symptoms that pop up due to electrolytic imbalance but it depends on the type of electrolyte that is out of balance. Some of the signs include fatigue, mood changes, confusion, stomach pain, loss of appetite, numbness in the hands and feet, irregular heartbeat or muscle cramping. Electrolytes are also found in foods like dense leafy greens, cucumbers, water fruits and celery.

Benefits of water and electrolytes in Summer

– It helps to balance your body temperature. Hence, keeps you cool and cope with summer better.
-Dehydration and electrolyte imbalance can cause brain fog as electrolytes play an essential role in supporting the neurotransmitters that your brain depends on.
-Drinking plenty of water and electrolytes may enhance physical performance during exercise sessions and especially during summer when the heat can induce further dehydration.
-Water and electrolytes help the blood carry oxygen to different parts of the body.
-Proper balance will also support digestive process.
-It will help you to keep your skin healthy!

Enjoy the summer to the fullest by ensuring to stay hydrated throughout and keeping your electrolytic balance in check!

It is peak summer in most parts of India, and the rising temperature increases the risk of dehydration, skin burn, fever and infections if there is a lack of proper food habits. Following a seasonal diet will ensure the right supply of nutritional content to your body. Nature is very powerful and it provides with the right choices of foods which are fresh and have higher nutritional content than fruits and vegetables that are out of season.

Don’t be alarmed by the hearsays about avoiding the seasonal foods such as eating mangoes might cause heat boils. It absolutely does not cause any harm and only creates great memories! We are so lucky to have the best produce in this season which will not only provide your body with all the essential vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants or phytochemicals but also, helps you be hydrated well and cools down your body. They can help you enjoy a variety of colourful fruits and vegetables like cucumber, mango, melon varieties, jackfruit and berries. Cherish these instead of grabbing an ice cream or a chilled packaged beverage for it not only helps enhance the natural cleansing and healing abilities of our system but cuts down a lot of empty calories too! 

Mindful food choices in Summer:Summer and Nutrition

Coping tips to deal with the stressful heat: 

– Hydrate well. Water is very important for your system especially during summer to combat dehydration issues. You can also enjoy easy summer drinks like aam panna, coriander seeds or rebel seeds water, lemon mint water, tender coconut. Avoid aerated or packaged beverages.

-Control your portions. Most people will have less appetite during summer or will feel like having light foods. So, plan and have frequent small meals to ensure right nutrition to your body. 

-Avoid trendy diets and enjoy seasonal produce that are locally available which will benefit you better. 

-Avoid excessive caffeine, tea, coffee and alcohol as these tend to promote dehydration.

-Avoid deep fried, fast foods and spicy foods. Instead add Ginger, pepper, asafoetida, cumin or fennel seeds to your dishes for the punch and these will also help with digestive issues that are common in summer. 

Also, check out some refreshing dishes from our instagram page or recipes column to Summer and Nutrition and enjoy the season’s relish. 

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) or chronic kidney failure is a result of when your kidneys have gradually lost their ability to filter out wastes and excess fluids from your body. The condition is usually progressive, and treatments include medications, dialysis and hemodialysis. Here’s a lesser discussed part of this touchy subject. How much of the excess fluids/wastes that are removed during these dialysis sessions are actually excesses or wastes? Are you losing something your body needs every time you go through a dialysis session? What are the side effects?

In this blog, we discuss the side effects of micronutrient deficiency that are very closely associated with CKD and dialysis. Read along, and keep yourself informed.

Kidney diseases and micronutrient deficiency – Where’s the correlation?

There’s always a correlation between nutrients and chronic illnesses. This correlation holds in good in both ways – You can develop complications and diseases if there’s chronic nutrient deficiency; and the nutritional balance in the body will be affected if you suffer from a chronic disease.

With respect to Chronic Kidney Disease, here are the reasons why your macronutrient balance is at risk –

  1. The dietary recommendations – There are a few dietary recommendations that people diagnosed with CKD will have to follow. These restrictions are aimed at reducing the intake of protein, phosphate, or potassium.
  2. Change in metabolism.
  3. Medications recommended for the condition.
  4. Other ailments and complications that you might be diagnosed with.
  5. The abdomen not being able to properly absorb nutrients.
  6. Excessive loss with urine and dialysate.

These are all potential reasons why people diagnosed with CKD might also have a micronutrient deficiency, and should be mindful of eating the rightful amount of everything that their body needs. This isn’t exclusive to later stages of CKD patients alone; but can pose a threat to people treating all stages of CKD.

What micronutrients are at the risk of loss?

  1. Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) – Huge amounts of vitamin C are lost during dialysis. This is partly due to the process itself, and partly due to the vitamin getting oxidized to dehydro-ascorbic acid during hemodialysis.
  2. Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) – There’s a lot of controversy around the topic. CKD patients that received dialysis 35% drop in pyridoxine concentration. The study shows that vitamin deficiency was not observed in patients receiving 50 mg pyridoxine after each dialysis session. Conversely, in those CKD patients not receiving B6 supplementations, the B6 deficiency was found in 78%, 77%, 50%, and 34% of cases, respectively.
  3. Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid) – There’s a significant loss of folic acid every time there’s a dialysis session. Folate supplementation in a dose of 1 mg/day should prevent deficiencies in hemodialysis patients.
  4. Zinc – Deficiency of Zinc in the hair and skin is observed in people with CKD. Other tissues including erythrocytes (a red blood cell) have healthy amounts.
  5. Selenium – It’s a trace mineral. While even the general population has a deficiency due to poor dietary addition, people with CKD have it worse due to malabsorption.Needless to say, these are all important micronutrients. If you have CKD and you’re treating it, you’ll have to monitor and keep your micronutrient levels at a healthy level.

What should I do now?

First things first, understand the condition of chronic kidney disease, the treatment of kidney failure and their combined effect on your micronutrient levels. Do your own research and stop believing in hearsay. The ‘eight glasses’ trick does not work if you’re looking to clean your kidneys. Follow our space, talk to people from our team and keep yourself on the know about the condition and the implications.

Dietary restrictions

You will have to be regular with medications, because mostly these medications – though not completely – will provide doses of the micronutrients that are expected to be lost due to the condition or the treatment. So do not skip medications, stick to dietary instructions but make sure you get the recommended amount of nutritional intake. Avoid food with high salt and high potassium, and get a lot of your protein from sources like dairy and meat. Greens are essential too!

The next logical step would be arriving at a proper, tailor-made diet routine for you, and sticking to it. We can help you with it. The number of times we’ve heard people ask us, “I am on dialysis, can’t I have normal food anymore, at all?” gives us a rough representation of how ill-informed people are about the condition and the balanced approach they’d need towards food and diet. We can help you with that.

Get in touch, and follow ONP’s social handles for more such bite-sized updates about health, wellness, conditions and condition specific diet plans.

In our last blog, Yoda told us a lot about the thyroid gland and the condition of an overactive thyroid gland. Today, we’ll be discussing in detail the polar opposite, an underactive thyroid. From types to causes, and the different dietary measures that you should take to bring your thyroid secretions levels to optimum, here’s everything you need to know about hypothyroidism.

What is hypothyroidism?

We’ve established how important the thyroid gland and the hormones it secretes are to maintain equilibrium in our health and body composition. Hypothyroidism is a condition where your thyroid hormone is secreting less than optimal amounts of thyroid hormones, such as TSH and T4. This can slow down the metabolism severely and can increase the risks of heart complications, myxedema, and a lot of other conditions.

There are three main types of hypothyroidism.

  1. Overt hypothyroidism – elevated serum TSH levels with low serum T4 levels
  2. Subclinical hypothyroidism – elevated serum TSH levels with serum T4 levels within the normal range (also known as mild thyroid failure)
  3. Congenital hypothyroidism – due to deficiency in TSH and T4 levels

That’s not all, though. An auto-immune condition called Hashimoto’s can also be the reason why the thyroid gland is underactive.

Why the malfunction?

There are quite a few reasons for the condition.

Any damage or disease related to the hypothalamus or pituitary gland might cause damage to the cells that secrete TSH.
Medications that contain high doses of lithium, iodine, or amiodarone can suppress hormone secretion.
Radiation therapy to treat thyroid cancers of the neck or head can affect the thyroid gland.

Apart from these, there are other reasons like autoimmune diseases (like Hashimoto’s), surgeries to remove the thyroid gland, low or no iodine in the diet and other environmental factors such as stress can be the causes of an under-active thyroid gland.

Hashimoto’s is an auto-immune condition where your body’s defense systems are attacking tissues in the thyroid gland, resulting in an under secreting gland. Possible reasons could be genetic history, viral infections, or environmental triggers like stress or exposure to radiation.

How do I know if I have hypothyroidism?

The foolproof way to do this is to get checked. To monitor levels of TSH and take other tests that can provide conclusive evidence of whether you have hypothyroidism or not. However, there are a few symptoms that you can watch out for.

  • Pervasive fatigue
  • Forgetfulness
  • Difficulty with learning
  • Dry skin, brittle hair, and nails
  • Puffy face
  • Constipation
  • Sore muscles
  • Weight gain and fluid retention
  • Heavy and/or irregular menstrual flow
  • Increased frequency of miscarriages
  • Increased sensitivity to cold


You can monitor TSH levels, yes, but that’s not the only test out there to find out if you have hypothyroid. Physicians also look for any anti-thyroid antibodies and T4 levels to find out if the thyroid gland is underactive.

What diet is the best for hyperthyroidism?

There’s no blanket diet here. It depends on a lot of other factors that are particular to your body. Other related conditions and critical health indicators should be taken into consideration to arrive at the optimal nutrition protocol for you. However, there are general rules of thumb when it comes to hypothyroidism, and here are a few things to keep in mind.

Things to avoid – excessive salt, red meat, soy, and gluten.
Things to add to diet – Iodine, antioxidants, seafood.

Please avoid excessive salt, red meat, soy, and soy-related products and gluten food. You’ll have to lay off the soy because genistein, a major soy isoflavone, has an estrogenic and goitrogenic activity which inhibits the activity of thyroid peroxidase. Going gluten-free helps because according to studies, there might be an overlap between celiac disease and Hashimoto’s. Gluten might also cause a leaky gut which will trigger the body to produce antibodies that might attack the thyroid gland.

You can however eat foods that are rich in iodine and antioxidants. Iodine deficiency is the major cause of hypothyroidism. Seafood is a great addition to a hypothyroid-friendly diet. Plan your diet around these do’s and don’ts!

Should I be worried?

Any chronic illness comes with its own complications and risk factors. Leaving hypothyroidism unchecked for prolonged periods can cause heart complications, depression, slowed mental functioning, loss of libido, birth defects, and myxedema.

There is a myth that hyperthyroidism is a disease for middle-aged women. It is not true. If you’re experiencing symptoms, or even if you’re not getting your thyroid levels checked periodically. Follow nutritional protocols. Get in touch with our team of nutritionists to stay on top of the hypothyroid condition!

The human body is a well-oiled machine that has a lot of different endocrine glands secreting hormones necessary for the body to maintain balance. One such gland is the thyroid gland. It is located in the lower front throat and is called the butterfly gland because of how it looks.

Hyperthyroid symptoms


The gland plays a very vital role and the hormones secreted from the thyroid gland influence many organs in our body. The thyroid gland produces the triiodothyronine T3 and the thyroxine T4 hormones. These hormones help in regulating blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate, metabolism, and how the body reacts to other hormones. An over-active thyroid gland produces more of these hormones. More than what the body can synthesize. This condition is called hyperthyroidism.

How do I know if I have hyperthyroid?

To diagnose if the thyroid is over-secreting its hormones, the amount of iodine collected and distributed by the thyroid gland is measured. A few symptoms can indicate the risk of a hyperthyroid condition.

  • Fast heart rate
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability Trembling hands
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Muscle weakness
  • hair loss
  • Change in menstrual pattern
  • Prominent “stare” of the eyes
  • Protrusion of the eyes, with or without double vision (in patients with Graves’ disease)
  • Accelerated loss of calcium from bones, which increases the risk of osteoporosis and fractures
  • Mood swings
  • Swollen thyroid gland (goiter)
  • Sensitivity to heat.

If you’re experiencing one or more of these symptoms, it would be wise to monitor the gland’s performance at regular time intervals.

Factors that influence the production of thyroid hormones.

An overactive thyroid gland could be the result of a lot of diseases. Other conditions like Grave’s disease, Plummer’s disease, and thyroiditis can cause enlargement or swell in the thyroid gland. Sometimes, overmedication can be the direct cause of the thyroid gland producing excess hormones. Improper diet can be the cause too, sometimes.

Grave’s disease: Grave’s is an autoimmune disease resulting in thyroid enlargement and hyperthyroid. The antibodies in our body affect the thyroid gland and it, in turn, produces too much T3 and T4 thyroid hormones.

Thyroid nodules: This condition is better known as Plummer’s disease. The lumps of tissue formed in the thyroid regions cause the gland to produce hormones at abnormally high rates.

Thyroiditis: An infection that usually attacks the thyroid gland. This causes the gland to swell and leak hormones into the bloodstream.

Excessive Iodine intake may cause hyperthyroidism

Overmedication: Sometimes people receiving an overdose of thyroxine medication can develop hyperthyroidism.

How does a proper, hyperthyroid-friendly diet help?

It is essential to know both what to eat and what not to. Here are a few food sources and minerals that are hyperthyroid friendly.

Cruciferous central – Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussel sprouts contain compounds that decrease thyroid hormone production. Please make sure that they’re well cooked. The reason Yoda emphasizes the cooking part is because a well-cooked cruciferous diet can also help remove almost 90% of the goitrogens present.

Iron – It’s not just about lowering the secretion. It’s also important that we improve the body’s capacity to synthesize hormones. Iron deficiency impairs the synthesis of thyroid hormones.

Selenium – It’s  another essential mineral that helps with thyroid hormone synthesis. Mushrooms, garlic, onion, egg, beef, liver, shellfish, sunflower seeds, and sesame seeds are sources rich in selenium.

Here are things that you’ll have to exclude from or reduce in your diet.

Iodine – Iodine is essential for the iodination of tyrosine residues, leading to the formation of thyroid hormones. Consuming iodine in excess can result in complications like hyperthyroidism, nodule formation, and other autoimmune thyroid diseases. Seafood, eggs, dairy, and iodized salt are rich sources. Please reduce intake of iodine if you have an already over-active thyroid gland.

Soy interferes with the iodine uptake. We advise you to reduce the consumption of foods like soy milk, soybean oil, tofu, edamame beans, and soy sauce.

Gluten – Research suggests that there are overlaps between celiac disease and disorders like Grave’s disease. Celiac disease is a condition that causes damage to the small intestine as the result of gluten ingestion. A gluten-free diet not only helps avoid this complication but also improves the absorption of thyroid medications.

Hearsay does more harm than good.

There are a lot of myths that go around, related to hyperthyroidism. One of the very common ones is statements like ‘thyroid symptoms are obvious’ and ‘it’s safer to treat a thyroid disease with iodine or salt rather than taking prescribed medicines’. These are not true. While there are symptoms associated with hyperthyroidism that can manifest physically, testing for TSH and thyroid hormones will alone lead to the proper diagnosis.

About the iodine intake, it is important to know what you’re eating and how it affects your body, especially if you have a chronic condition. So, please take the prescribed medicine, consult with the experienced nutritionists in our team and get yourself a proper diet plan that complements the medications you take. Thyroid conditions if treated right can even bring back your thyroid hormone secretion to the right levels. Otherwise, you might be doing more harm than good.

Stay informed, stay healthy.

As one of the best nutritionist avians, or the only one, Yoda cannot emphasize the importance of having optimal eating habits and patterns. However, to understand what’s optimal, we’ll have to trace our steps backward, understand our current diet from the ground up and restructure it to align it with our health goals.

Why do people eat what they eat?

Food is an integral part of our everyday lives. Rightly so, our food habits are shaped right from our childhood. Based on our cultural backgrounds, the peer pressure we go through & the choices we make with our health in mind, and a lot of other factors that influence our food habits.

Our households might influence if we’re vegetarian or non-vegetarian, our peers might influence habits like fast food, smoking, and drinking. As years progress, what we eat is also shaped by our health conditions and preferences of our own.

For instance, people with lactose intolerance eat a lot less dairy products and people who’re actively looking to reduce their cholesterol levels will eat less saturated fats and processed foods.

While it’s not exhaustive, one’s cultural background, peer pressure, health consciousness, health conditions, and other psychological factors are the reason why they eat what they eat. It is very important to know this, because to course-correct yourself, it is important to understand why you were in the course in the first place.

Healthy habits, healthy being.

“Eat healthily” is the most confusing suggestion one can give. ‘Healthy’ is very subjective, and for each individual and their body there needs to be a scientific, evidence-based, and formulaic diet plan. So, blanket diets that claim to be the ‘one size fits all solution’ are not the ideal way to approach food and health.

You’ll have to monitor your health and biomarkers that indicate risks of conditions like diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol, etc., and come up with a diet plan that ensures sustainable nutrition that can reduce these risks and bring your biomarkers to their optimum levels.

Constant intervention and diet modification definitely help, but getting started in the right direction is all that matters.

While it is true that specific food habits and particular dietary practices can not be followed by everyone, there are a few habits that wouldn’t hurt if you picked them up. Consider them the very basics; healthy eating 101.

  1. Practice mindful eating.
  2. Whole foods are always friendly. Choose minimally processed veggies and fruits, and add more of them to your plate.
  3. Avoid food that’s processed or refined to a point where there are little to no natural nutrients.
  4. Pay attention to your portion sizes. Smaller, more frequent meals are better than larger meals with huge gaps in between.
  5. Snacking habits need revisiting. Nuts instead of chips, fruits instead of cakes, and soups instead of carbonated drinks!

These are all a few general practices that can take your health a long way forward. Here’s one more – eat on time!

Erratic meal timings and their effect on your body’s clock

Food habits are directly related to health and chronic conditions. One of the most common, yet most detrimental eating habits in today’s world is how irregular our meal timings have become. 3 AM snacks are romanticized and skipping breakfast for work has become a prideful habit. Here’s the ugly truth – irregular, erratic meal timings are spoiling your body’s balance!

These food habits with erratic timings also have downsides such as a drop in energy levels, fatigue, headache episodes as they interfere with the body’s natural circadian rhythm that regulates the sleep-wake cycle. This will impact physical, mental, and behavioral changes.

While circadian rhythm is considered synonymous with sleeping and waking, the sleep cycle isn’t the only clock your body holds. Here’s how out-of-sync meal timings can disrupt your natural rhythm.

It can induce increased calorie intake due to impaired satiety mechanisms through leptin and ghrelin. In simpler words, your body’s confused about being full and being hungry, and we end up snacking a lot or filling ourselves up with cups of coffee.

Things like the body’s temperature, some intestinal functions, and nutrient absorption are all rhythmically regulated.

This is why people who skip breakfast have a higher body mass, and why people that work night shifts have bowel habit alterations, constipation/diarrhea, bloating, and other metabolic syndrome risks.

The human body and the rhythm it functions around is pretty complex and you’ll need to consciously stick to a routine when it comes to eating, physical activity, and dietary plans.

Sticking to a routing

Yoda read a study report that said people who had balanced meals at the right proportion regularly (6 or more meal portions in a day) showed optimal energy expenditure, nutrition absorption, and overall healthy biomarker signals. This means they were less prone to risks like cholesterol, sugar, and hormone balance than people who had a poorer diet plan and irregular meal patterns.

This empirical evidence along with the testimonies of all the clients that we interact with daily, we can confirm that regularity, some amount of self-monitoring, and the conscious food choices that we make will help improve our health and help us reach our health goals. A routine helps you realize that taking care of your health isn’t a one-time activity, but a continuous process!

Take help when you need it

Regulating habits and developing new, healthy ones are easier said than done. Avoiding triggers that make it harder to stick to the routine, to reward or rework your dietary practices based on the feedback from your body, and making constant progress towards a healthier tomorrow is an exciting journey, but a tiny bit exhausting.

So, get professionals to help you with it. Speak to our team of expert nutritionists, and give yourself the healthy lifestyle you deserve.


All of you folks must have come up with new year’s resolutions by now. In fact, a few of them might have dwindled a little too. No worries, Yoda’s here to help. Yoda is a big fan of health and wellbeing and encourages achieving it through a personalized clean diet. In this blog, we’ll discuss how effective health goals are set, pursued, and achieved. Follow through!

Where to start?

Start with the things you want to change. A goal isn’t a task, but a solution to your current lifestyle problems. If your problem is you not being in the shape you want, then your goal is the solution to that problem. Getting enough physical work out every day might be a goal. Eating healthy and avoiding over-processed food is a goal.

Be whatever, start with understanding and receiving signals your body’s giving you. If you are feeling exhausted all the time, if your gut is giving you troubles frequently or if you’re experiencing sleeplessness often, then it means that something’s off and you need to correct the course of your physical fitness.

That is where you start!

What should you keep in mind while arriving at a goal?

The objective of setting a goal isn’t just to set it, obviously. Achieving it and pursuing it consistently is. Realistic goals are usually easy to follow. A dream physique is achievable. However, giving yourself enough time is important. If you set unrealistic, unattainable goals, despite your best efforts you’re getting demoralized. So, set goals you can practically achieve.

That being said, not being to follow a goal mostly has to do with our lifestyle. There are a lot of triggers like past habits and peer pressure that stop us from following the course. If a late-night movie encourages binge eating, it is a trigger. Eating impulsively, eating junk, or skipping gym are all things that you can avoid if you simply figure out what triggers these responses. So, not only is it important to know what a goal must be but also to know what possible factors can stop you from achieving them.

Discipline – A route paralleled by no other shortcuts.

Any new habit that aids your goal needs some ‘fitting in’ in your current lifestyle. Only then is sustainability possible. You’d need to put in time and effort in pursuing your goal. If you’ve decided to eat healthily, then putting effort into measuring portions, counting macros, and monitoring your everyday meal patterns are all things you must do. This takes an ounce of discipline and a lot of patience.

Document your progress.

This brings us to measuring progress. The most important part of pursuing a goal is keeping track of how far you’ve come. Yoda believes self-monitoring is the biggest form of self-love. As far as health goes, self-monitoring starts with keeping track of your biomarkers that indicate risks like diabetes, hypertension, hyper cholesterol, and other conditions. Keep monitoring them, and if the diet plan that you’re following isn’t helping you improve these markers, then it’s time to revisit your goals and realign yourself to a healthier behavioral alternative. Keeping up with your goal is a great achievement, and every time you make progress you deserve a reward! What’s the reward, you ask? A healthier life and a fitter physique.

Yoda’s challenge – Mindful eating

This new year, as your friendly neighborhood owl that knows a lot about food and soul, Yoda’s giving you a challenge. Mindful eating! Mindful eating is exactly what it sounds like. Be mindful of what you eat, whenever you eat. The whole experience of mindful eating is centered around hunger, satiation, and how you perceive food.

What to do?

  1. Approach the food with no judgment at all. Every time you’re served a plate of food, dig into it like you’re eating it for the first time, and have an open mind towards the dish.
  2. Be patient. Take it one spoon at a time. Be in the moment, and be fully aware of the fact that you’re eating.
  3. Experience everything about the food like you’re a beginner. The consistency, the taste, the smell.
  4. Trust the process, and understand how differently your body reacts to different food.
  5. Do not expect something to happen. If you’re eating a salad or a special meal plan, do not focus on what results from you’d get from it. Be in the moment and experience food in the present.
  6. Accept the food that you’re eating for what it is and be thankful for all that has happened for it to land on your plate. Let go of your past experiences, expectations, and everything else, and simply enjoy the meal.

Avoid binge eating, and if you catch yourself reaching for a chip instinctively, stop for a moment and ask if you’re actually hungry enough. If hunger isn’t why you’re eating, avoid it. Try practicing this, and let Yoda know if it helped.