India is a land of traditions, fun, fairs and
festivals. Despite all the madness, poverty, hunger, corruption and violence
currently prevailing in some parts of the country one can still find that ever
elusive peace, tranquility and devotion in the innocent smiles of the ordinary
people going about with their lives in every small town and village of this
giant fabric woven together, that is India.
is an occasion which brings India together, and is celebrated with great gusto
across all strata of society - from the humble hut of the laborer to the
opulent "Antillas" of industrialists.
The sound of patakas or
firecrackers announces the onset of this bright colorful festival. People tend
to forget all their worries and pains and revel in cleaning and decorating
their houses with flowers and beautiful lamps, catching up with family and old
buddies, and preparing yummy, scrumptious, ghee infused snacks and
for near and dear ones and celebrate this high-spirited and "high-cholesterol
" festival of lights.
Children and grown-ups alike wait eagerly for
this colorful and vibrant festival as it brings in a lot of fun and
togetherness. To keep up with the excitement of joy and merriment on the onset
of Diwali people tend to binge on a variety of delicacies that send calorie
skyrocketing. In today's fast-paced generation with little or no time for
exercise, this indulgence could send your basic health parameters closer or
even into the irretrievable zone. However, with a little planning in
consumption of food and some basic precautions, this festival of lights can be
enjoyed to the hilt without compromising your health.
Burn Calories and not Crackers this Diwali
As the adage goes "A moment on the lips is
a lifetime on the hips".
Remember, the more we eat high calorie food
the more the accumulation of resistant fat in our body. Sweets are too inviting
to resist but just spare a thought before gorging on those calorie laden
Nibble at those sweets, let the taste linger in your mouth very much like a
sommelier tasting wine rather than gulping down mouthfuls of laddoos and
. You will realize that not only do you eat less but you also
enjoy the taste more. The traditional Buddhist way of eating is to keep the
first bite in your mouth for about ten seconds before chewing it slowly and
steadily. This is supposed to satiate the taste buds which in turn douse the
hunger pangs faster.
Reveling in this celebratory mood is good but it
also calls for wise eating. So by evolving a special "Diwali lifestyle"
for the duration of the festivities you can have the cake and the icing too!!!
Walk that extra mile or run on the treadmill for those extra ten minutes on the
morning of a Diwali that anticipates a festive spread. Eat salads
and fresh fruits
morning hours on the day of Diwali, and succumb free of guilt to all those
irresistible aromas coming out of your kitchen towards the evening hours.
Try baking or roasting rather than frying food.
The taste is almost similar but the benefits are manifold. Cut down on your sugar
switching over to natural sweeteners like honey or dates and skimmed low fat
milk to make sweets
just cannot make out the difference in taste and you can let them indulge too
without restricting their temptations. Detoxify yourselves by avoiding all
those aerated frizzy drinks and by sipping natural home-made fruit juices,
buttermilk or coconut water. Keep sipping in a lot of water so that you feel
full and hence eat less. Try and buy eatables that are sugar free
serve them to your guests too. When visiting friends, take assorted dry fruits
which are healthy and lower on calories, rather than ghee filled sweets to show
that you really care for them.
It's a Festival of Lights - Not Sounds and
As an educated society with an increased
awareness of global
, pollution and the involvement of young children in the making of crackers,
people must give a second thought to bursting these non-biodegradable fireworks. Firecrackers contain harmful chemicals which lead to respiratory problems
The decibel level in most Indian cities during Diwali could beat many warzones
hands down!!! If you have to fire crackers, switch to noiseless crackers that
give out less smoke.
Use sparklers and fireworks which give out more
light than sound. Remember the good people of Ayodhya did not have
ear-splitting 'Laxmi bombs' to welcome Lord Rama!!! They illuminated their
houses with Diyas or handmade festive lamps. Lighting up houses with scented
candles, decorative diyas and eco-friendly earthen lamps can be a good and
smart idea especially during these times of economic recession. If you are
indeed keen on sending your money up in smoke, visit an orphanage instead, with
your kids and gift them something special this Diwali!!!! The joy of giving and spreading
light will fill you and your family with an inner peace that is more powerful
than the sound of the "10000 Ladi".
Enjoy a Safe Diwali
No doubt Diwali adds more sparkle and radiance
to people's lives but a little bit of carelessness and negligence can lead to
serious consequences. That one "momentary lapse of reason"
end up messing this happy festival
grievous harm to self and those around.
The custom of bursting crackers has become a
significant part of Diwali celebrations. Fireworks can be fun if you use them
properly. It is sad that during Diwali there is invariably an increase in the
number of accidents. As a wise man once lamented "If only common sense were so
common"!!!! By practicing simple rules one can have a safe and injury-free
Tips While Using Firecrackers
Take extra care while lighting your candles
and diyas by placing them firmly on a table so that they don't topple and catch
Don't wear loose, cumbersome and "highly
clothes. Change into something more practical
prior to the fireworks session.
Going barefoot while firing crackers is a bad
idea. Wear comfortable footwear so you don't trip while running back and forth.
Always keep a fire extinguisher at home to
avoid any unfortunate mishap.
Always accompany a child while bursting crackers
In case of burn one should keep in mind to put
the burnt area under running, cold water so that all the toxins get washed
Do not apply turmeric
ointments in case of burns. Visit the nearest doctor for treatment of burns,
Do clean-up after the fireworks session.
Metallic wires, toxic chemicals and litter could injure kids and pets in the
As you light the Diyas and pray to Goddess Lakshmi
this Diwali, may the light and warmth of those prayers fill your lives with
peace and prosperity in these troubled times!!! Wish you a happy,
low-cholesterol and pollution free Diwali!!!