Yes, as always I am a lagger when following trends and I have only recently laid my hands on celebrity weight loss consultant Rujuta Diwekar’s ‘Don’t Lose Your Mind, Lose Your Weight’ courtesy of a dear friend B. Yet, I must say, I did hear a lot about the person behind Kareena Kapoor’s size zero figure but since I was never in the ‘size zero’ rat race, I had never really delved deeper into the topic. Recently though, I stumbled upon Rujuta Diwekar’s official website and Youtube channel and while I was surfing through the portals (one link led to another and then yet another), I learnt a lot of things about some misheld fitness myths that I had clung on to for all of these years. Now that Rujuta Diwekar has managed to convince me otherwise by busting some of my most ‘holy grail’ like precious fitness myths, it is time for me to test them out. Watch this space to know more about my sucess or failure in the near future, following her weight loss advice. I will be sure to keep you posted.
Busted Myth Number 1: Oils
It’s Not About Canola Or Olive, Its More About Refined Or Filtered
In line with the herd hypothesis that began with the large marketing campaigns by oil giants, I, like many, had built up mental perceptions of which oil was good or bad. Canola and virgin olive oil were definitely better than groundnut oil for instance. But Rutuja Diwekar busted my myth so badly, I actually even heard the bubble burst! Rutuja insists that first and foremost we should actually be looking at whether our oil is filtered or refined rather than where it comes from.
Refined oils are produced at such high temperature levels that not only do they lose all their vitamins, minerals and fatty acids but also their taste and flavor. In other words, refined oil manufacturers don’t really have to think twice about their raw materials (whether they are high quality, poor quality or even fresh). Refined oils however make sense for manufacturers since there is an almost 100 percent oil extraction from the raw materials and hence there are world-wide marketing campaigns promoting their healthiness.
Filtered oils on the other hand retain all of their healthy nutrients and are hence not toxic for the heart. Since they also retain the flavor and aroma of their raw materials, they force the manufacturers to source only the best. Additionally, since filtered oil processes do not extract 100 percent of the oil from the raw materials, you can be assured that you only get the best lot! Now let’s look into which oil is actually the best one.
So are seeds or nut oils such as groundnut, til, etc. better or are vegetable oils better? Rutuja sticks to her mantra of staying local. Depending on which region you come from, it is best to stick to the local oils. For example, if you are from India, you can opt for groundnut, til (sesame) or mustard oils without giving the cholesterol warnings that you have been trained to hear, any second thoughts. Rutuja explains that these 3 oils have the right omega-3 to omega-6 to omega-9 combination and hence it is best to stick with them despite the herd moving towards canola, soya or ricebran. Stick to those, but just ensure that you get the filtered varieties rather than the refined ones.
Her view on coconut oils is also quite refreshing. She insists that while the world has gone on a spree to downgrade coconut oil as bad for your health, if you like its taste, it is actually good for your body, skin and hair. It has fantastic anti-viral and anti-fungal properties if you care to give it a try.
Busted Myth Number 2: Ghee
Was My Ghee Avoidance Compounding My Stubborn Fat Problem?
All my adult life I have avoided ghee like the plague and though lots of wise people kept telling me otherwise, only Rutuja managed to cut through my haze and show me the light. She maintains that it could be the body’s starvation of ghee that could be the cause behind what we term as ‘stubborn fat’ that just won’t go away despite exercising or dieting. Ghee is not just a joint lubricant as many believe it to be, but it also has phenomenal anti-viral an anti-fungal properties. Ghee is also a brain tonic (that explains why all the little kids in India that were fed ghee by the buckets are now the IT experts that are ruling the world!). Ghee can also give you glowing skin (if that is what it takes to motivate you). You can blame your ghee-avoidance for that stubborn belly, underarm or thigh fat.
Rujuta insists that if you are plagued with stubborn fat in any part of your body, fat that simply does not go away despite the fact that your are eating right and exercising routinely, it is simply there because your food plate lacks ghee. She says that if you increase your intake of ghee, you will notice that your stubborn fat will slowly vanish (now that explains why a no longer chubby Kareena enjoys her ghee parathas everyday). Rujuta explains the reasoning behind this phenomenon. She says that ghee contains several essential amino acids that help to mobilize fat. What this essentially means is that the fat cells in your stubborn fat region are encouraged to let go of their energy sources, thus causing them to shrink to their original size slowly and steadily. So, if you want to melt your stubborn fat with ghee, you can use it in any way you like. You can either put a spoonful of ghee on top of your food or you can choose to cook any particular foods in ghee. Let your tastebuds decide.
Busted Myth Number 3: Green Tea
Which One’s Healthier: Black Tea or Green Tea?
Yes, we have all heard the world claim green tea to be the near perfect mantra for a host of health benefits, two of them being weight loss and detox. Many people, like me, have even made the painful transition from traditional tea to its greener, ‘so called healthier’ ‘not quite so appealing to the tastebuds’ counterpart.
Yet, Rujuta Diwekar insists that green tea’s healthiness has been gravely over hyped.
Rutuja insists that green tea is not only ‘not any better’ than our standard black tea in terms of antioxidants but it also has the potential to being overly abused (due to it being touted as a healthy tea). In fact, black tea, oolong tea as well as white tea have the same levels of antioxidants as green tea just maybe in different types. Rujuta however does not differentiate between them and suggests that the antioxidants from one tea are no better or worse than the antioxidants found in another. Unfortunately though, black and other teas are somehow just not sold to you with that marketing tag, that’s all.
Rujuta suggests that the way to go about choosing the tea for you is to find one that agrees with your tastebuds. She is a firm believer that the body (through the tastebuds) often shows you exactly which nutrients your body requires and if you follow your tastebuds while choosing your tea, you inadvertently pick up the exact antioxidants that your body craves.
Busted Myth Number 4: Cardiovascular Exercises
Running? Does That Come First And Foremost
Guilty as charged! I am certainly one of those fools who think that running on the treadmill for an hour each day and then moving on to other cardiovascular exercises that make me breathlessly sweaty will actually help me lose weight. Rujuta Diwekar busts my myth and turns me towards strength training.
Rujuta Diwekar downplays cardiovascular exercises and advocates strength training first.
Rujuta explains it this way. Through cardiovascular workouts you are training the two strongest organs in the body, the heart and the lungs. These involuntary organs are programmed to function automatically and they are actually capable of handling much more work that our other bodily organs.
On the other hand, our bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments are infinitely more fragile and need to be strengthened and conditioned with strength training. Unless these are strong, running long distances will plague you with back problems, injuries and knee pain, etc. In fact, the resultant fatigue can actually be attributed to weak upper bodies; a weak spine and chest ensures that you collapse on your chest in long distance runs (depriving the working muscle of enough oxygen). Such top body weakness also leaves you more vulnerable to injuries and sprains.
You can only gain the ability to stabilize your spin through strength training and it is only when you achieve that, should you indulge in long haul runs.
Rujuta Diwekar has recently launched a video book by the name ‘Indian Food Wisdom’. If anyone of you get hold of it, do give me a good review. I shall keep you posted on how my newly learnt weight loss facts help my weight loss cause.