Chef's Tips On Healthy Eating to Avoid Corporate-life Stress Meals away from home, make it harder to control ingredients, calories and portions

By Gautam Chaudhry

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With today's hectic lifestyle and running between busy schedules it is becoming very difficult to take care of your health. Most of us end up eating out most of the times and it is generally grabbing a sandwich from the deli counter for lunch, ordering a pizza or splurging on a high-sugar beverage to give instant energy.

All these products are refined products and have high calories, which are very easily digestible. These calories immediately increase our glycemic index and shoots it up which gives you a boost of energy but in a short while you have exhausted that energy and you feel completely drained. This stimulation of the system increases your blood sugar levels and affects your body.

Meals away from home, make it harder to control ingredients, calories and portions. The following tips may help you enjoy eating out without abandoning your efforts to eat well.

Fruits- Fruits have a plethora of vitamins and minerals. Do you know that oranges offer more health benefits than Vitamin C pills? Satisfy your palate with nutritious fruits. It is recommended to have at least 2 pieces of fruits a day.

Vegetables- Raw vegetables are great source of various micro-nutrients which are important for good health. Every meal of your should comprise of at least 50% of your total intake. While cooking vegetables, one should try to use the extra water left over while boiling the vegetables.

Eat Small Meals- Choose several small meals over one huge meals. This evens out your energy distribution. It's also better for your stomach; because it doesn't over-stretch from digesting a huge volume of food at one go. In general, eat when you feel hungry, and stop when you're full. You don't need to wait until official meal times before you start eating.

Listen to your body and what it tells you. Stop eating when you feel full. Many of us rely on external cues to tell when we're full, such as whether everyone has finished eating or whether your plate is empty. These are irrelevant: you should look at internal cues, such as whether your stomach feels full or not. Don't eat just because there's food on the plate. Stop when you feel about 3/4 full — if you eat till your totally full, you feel bloated. Use your gut as your indicator.

Cook Your Meals- Whenever you can, try to prepare your meals. When you prepare your meals, you control what goes into them, rather than choosing between sub-optimal choices in a restaurant. Get quality kitchen equipment — it will be your best investment ever. Having a blender makes it a breeze to make your fruit/vegetable juices! Having a small oven makes baking and heating food so easy.

Bottle of Water- Always carry a water bottle when you go out. That way, you can drink whenever you want. It saves you money and you don't need to resort to bad alternatives like soda. As well, the right way to drink water is having 2 glass-full at one go rather than taking small sips from time to time. Before starting your meal, you should have a glass full of water; it helps in indicating when you are ¾ full.

Heavy Breakfast- There is a famous saying that, "Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar". Heavy breakfast is important for a healthy life style and must be kept that way. Dinner should always be very moderate as you do not do much work post that and it takes some time to digest the food.

Healthy Snacks- If you're hungry at work, eat healthy snacks like fruits, vegetable juices, and yogurts. These are nutritional and don't give you that sugar rush. Have them readily available so that you can get a munch and stop when you have your fill. Stay away from cookies, packaged savouries and candy bars.

Chef Gautam Chaudhry is an alumni of prestigious IHM Lucknow, with his specialization in Indian and Progressive World Cuisine. For him, food is a fundamental part of his Life. Having 2 decades of experience in the industry, Chef Gautam has a good understanding of ingredients and flavors. He is known for his healthy and experimental flavors. He comprehends the art of good nutrition well and combines it with the aesthetics of Ayurveda. He has a niche way of presenting his food and utilizes the contrasts of ingredient colors on the plate as a fine painter. 

 Chef Gautam Chaudhry represents the exclusive group of creative chefs who pioneered the trend of Progressive Indian Cuisine. Having started his career with the Radisson Group, Chef Gautam went on to work with The Oberoi’s. He was instrumental in launching Threesixty degrees at The Oberoi’s New Delhi, before heading to Tanzore Restaurant & Lounge in the very glamorous Beverly Hills, US.

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