It’s tough to be a girl: Part 2
We left off after skipping out phase 1 of a women’s life (teen years and puberty), jumping right into phase 2, marriage and phase 3 pre pregnancy, pregnancy and post pregnancy. Let’s continue on to some of the other major events in a women’s life that can be life altering, physically taxing and sometimes mentally draining if not handled the correct way:
3. Hypo/Hyper thyroid: Rujuta explains that whilst there is not enough known about the thyroid gland, it is definitely not something that should constantly be used as a factor to blame for not being able to lose weight. Lack of nutrition plays a large part in disturbing the thyroid in either direction as does stress, lack of exercise, pregnancy/menopause, lack of sleep and recovery all disturb the thyroid gland. Again, not taking care of one self. My personal opinion is that of course if you have some chemical issues, you have them, but keeping some of these items in check can help lower the risk of thyroid problems. The thyroid gland regulates the body’s metabolism and has an influence on every other hormone in our body including how vitamins are used within the body. So an imbalanced thyroid can completely derail a person. Suggestions to keep our thyroid gland in check..espsecially if you are diagnosed with thyroid issues:
–increase iodine consumption by eating natural iodine rich foods: carrots, bananas, strawberries, milk and whole grains
-Add in complete sources of protein in your diet: cheese, paneer, whey protein, milk, curd, daals, eggs, fresh seafood, chicken.
–Ensure you eat a bit more but eat wholesome meals.
–Take Vitamins B, C and E as supplements
–Do not increase calories at the cost of eating extra processed foods
–Do add exercise but do not over do the exercise
–Perform cardio excercise but not ones that will stress out your weight-bearing joints: knee, ankle, lower back and hips.
–Spend at least 1-2 days a week weight training
–Add yoga into your routine (I take Bikram and there are several poses that are for thyroid regulation)
–Sleep and rest enough. 8 hours a night is a must
Below is a sample diet recommended by Rujuta to one of her clients that suffered from thyroid dysfunctions amongst other issues:
Meal 1: 1 banana (5:45am)
Meal 2: Poha/Upma/Idli (7:30am)
Meal 3: Handful of peanuts (9:30am)
Meal 4: Glass of butter milk (11:30am)
Meal 5: Rice+Daal+Veggies (12:30pm)
Meal 6: 2 egg whites (2:30)
Meal 7: Vegetable toast (4:30)
Meal 8: Whey protein Shake (6:30)
Meal 9: Fish/Chicken+Rice and Sabzi (8pm)
4. PCOD/PCOS: Polycystic Ovary Disease or Syndrome–Excuse my langauge but knowing a good amount of women who have suffered from this, this is a b**** to deal with. The presence of small cysts around the ovaries control the delicate hormonal balance that keeps us regular and sane. The entire body can be thrown out of whack, leading to issues with the monthly cycle, hormone imbalance, mood swings, depression, difficulty in getting pregnant or carrying a pregnancy. It also exposes the “victim” in this case to type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high body fat (ironic since high body fat can be a cause and effect for this disease), feeling uncomfortable, highly irritable, bloated after the monthly period. The first step to managing something as such is to lower your body fat levels. Stop hiding behind your PCOD/PCOS and start using it as a reason to take better care of yourself.
–Eat fresh whole some food and be mindful of how you eat. If you have this problem, you should take the most care of eating at regular intervals
–Avoid soups and anything that is over cooked. This will destroy the nutritional value of the vegetables and its uber important to get the vitamins and minerals the body needs to take care of itself.
–PCOD/PCOS requires more unprocessed carbs, so do not cut out carbs. Eat carbs such as humble wheat, rice, jowar, bajra, nanchi, ragi, barley (read: eat thepla, roti, paratha, thalipeeth, dosa, rotla).
–Eat complete proteins–Daal, Milk, Milk products, cheese, paneer, fish, eggs, etc
–Stay way from anything that says fat free or low fat on the shelf. Add essential fatty acids like Omega 3 and 6 to your plate which can be naturally found in: ghee, paneer, oils, thil, safflower oil, rice bran, sunflower, olives, coconut, etc. Eating fat slows down the conversion of food to fat. Add in ALA (Alpha Lipolic Acid found in flaxseeds, walnuts, green veggies).
–Eat an abundant supply of B12 rich foods: sprouts, fresh curd, paneer, idli, dosa, (anything fermented) which is great for your ovaries and allows for iron absorption.
–take care of how much calcium you have. In fact, you need it more than ever. Add in a calcium supplement right before bed time.
— Regular workouts are key to a regular monthly cycle and ovulation
— Add in weight training workouts to your week
— Cardio is a great way to burn fat
–Surya Namaskars help
— Sleep and wake up at the same time every day to keep your body “regular”
A sample recall for a women with PCOD/PCOS:
Meal 1: (6am): Museli+Milk
Meal 2: (8am) 2 egg whites+ whole wheat toast
Meal 3( 10am): Chaas
Meal 4: (12pm): Poha/Upma/Iddli + Sambhar+Chutney
Meal 5 (2pm): Handful peanuts
Meal 6: (4pm) slice of cheese
Meal 7 (6pm): Roti+Green Sabzi+ Daal or kadhi
Meal 8: (8pm): Glass of warm milk
And again..stay tuned for more to come! The list is never ending..ain’t it!