Your 9-step Diwali cheat meal strategy

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Here is a note for weight watchers! Cheat meals are extremely important. They allow you to satiate your cravings and give you the right motivation to stay on your healthy eating plan. Here is your Diwali cheat sheet – the sensible way!

1. Snack on a healthy food before going out. It could be a bowl of fruits or some roasted makhanas or khakra. Alpa Momaya, Senior Nutritionists at HealthifyMe recommends, “Eating any protein and vegetables like bowl of salad/ soup/raita/papaya/sprouts to stabilize your blood sugar, before a party or family get together is a good hack.”

2. Drink but use this trick: Prepare your drinks with water or diet colas. Avoid juices and soft drinks. Also, for every unit of alcohol that you drink, have a glass of water. Keep yourself hydrated while drinking alcohol. It will save you from alcohol overload and also prevent that nasty hangover the next day.

3. Pick a small plate and promise yourself to NEVER refill your plate. Having water or lemon water simultaneously will curb unwanted cravings.

4. Alpa suggests making your own mithai instead of buying it. “Avoid artificial sweeteners and opt for natural ones like dates, jaggery and figs. Make use of skimmed milk and honey while making desserts. Minimise the size of the sweets and add extra dried fruits and nuts or keep fresh fruits along with the indulgent snacks, so that the healthier option is also available,” she adds.

5. Instead of opting for calorie-laden cheese dip, go for yoghurt or tomato-based dips. And have low-fat crackers or vegetable sticks instead on fried snacks.

6. Do not over indulge in sweets. A fruit platter, fruit yoghurt or low fat ice cream should be enough to curb your sweet craving.

7. It is okay to enjoy small treats that you know are calorie dense so as to not feel deprived of Diwali fun.

8. Instead of buttered, fried, crispy, gravy, creamy foods, opt for stir-fried, steamed, poached, garden fresh varieties.

9. Last but not the least, keep sipping on water throughout the day. That will prevent you from unnecessary bingeing.

Here are a few snack recipes for your cheat meal by Gouri Priya Mylavarapu, Nutritionist at HealthifyMe:

Healthy & Delicious Festive Food Items

Aloo-Broccoli Tikkis

Aloo-Broccoli Tikkis
Image credits: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Ingredients:
● 1 tsp olive oil
● 1/4 cup finely chopped onions
● 1 tsp ginger-garlic (adrak-lehsun) paste
● 1 tsp finely chopped green chillies
● 1/2 cup finely chopped broccoli
● salt to taste
● 1/2 cup boiled and grated potatoes
● 1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs for coating
● 2 tsp olive oil for cooking

Procedure:
1. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan, add onions, ginger-garlic paste and green chillies. Saute for 2
minutes
2. Add broccoli and salt to the mix and saute on a low flame for another 5 to 7 minutes or till the
broccoli is almost cooked.
3. Remove from the flame, add the potatoes and mix well. Keep aside to cool.
4. Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions and shape each portion into flat tikkis.
5. Roll each tikki in the bread crumbs and keep aside.
6. Heat a nonstick pan and cook each tikki using ½ tsp of oil till it turns golden brown on both
the sides.
7. Serve hot.

Total Calories: 85.5 (per piece)
Protein: 4.5 g
Carbohydrates: 10.5 g
Fat: 61.5 g
Fiber: 1 g

Date and Apricot Laddoos

Date and Apricot Laddoos
Image credits: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Ingredients:
● 50g soft dried apricot
● 100g soft dried date
● 50g dried cherry
● 2 tsp coconut oil
● 1 tbsp toasted sesame seed

Procedure:
1. Whizz apricots with dates and cherries in a food processor until very finely chopped.
2. Allow the mix to rest for a few minutes
3. Apply coconut oil on your palms
4. Shape the mix into walnut-sized balls, then roll in sesame seeds.
5. Serve as it is
6. Store in an airtight container

Total Calories: 120.5
Protein: 2 g
Carbohydrates: 30.25 g
Fat: 5.25 g
Fiber: 5.75 g

Apple and Ragi Halwa

Apple and Ragi Halwa
Image credits: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Ingredients:
● 1 medium sized apple
● 3 tbsp Ragi flour
● 1 tsp Ghee
● Water
● Cinnamon powder
● 2 tbsp Jaggery

Procedure:
1. Soak apple in salt water for a few minutes to wash pesticides off the skin
2. Grind the apple with or without skin and keep aside.
3. Take a pan, add water and jaggery and allow it to boil.
4. Once the water starts boiling add ragi flour and stir continuously and mix together to
remove lumps.
5. Once ragi is cooked add ghee and grounded apple paste to the ragi and mix well.
6. Stir it together for few seconds and switch off the heat.
7. Serve hot or Refrigerate it for half an hour and serve with Grated nuts.

Total Calories: 103
Protein: 0.5 g
Carbohydrates: 21 g
Fat: 2.5 g
Fiber: 1 g
Original Post by: timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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