Thursday, October 24, 2013

My trip to Alwar, Rajasthan!

I recently had the opportunity to go back to my favorite state 'Rajasthan', and this time to the pretty town of Alwar, very green, surrounded by the lovely Aravali hills, it has some very interesting historic sites! My first stop was the
The Alwar fort, built on a hill, stands majestically 1000 feet above the city of Alwar. The fort was built by Hasan Khan Mewati in 1550 A.D. It passed from the Mughals, to the Marathas, to the Jats, till it was finally captured by the Kachhwaha Rajputs.
Below the scarred battlements of the fort, at the base of the hill across which it sprawls, is the City Palace with its spacious apartments. This now houses a museum within it with its collection of royal memorabilia. An exquisite pond called Sagar is situated behind the City Palace.
The famous ‘Moosi Maharani ki Chhatri’, a chhatri built in memory of Moosi Rani, wife of Maharaja Bakhtawar Singh, is magnificent. It took nine years (1804 A.D. to 1813 A.D.) to complete the construction of the monument and tank.
And last but not the least, I got lucky seeing a baby 'Barasingha' who happened to troll down the hills to visit the tank for a drink of water!

Friday, October 18, 2013

BOLLYFIT number for the week!!!!!

And the BOLLYFIT number for the week is....'PARTY ALL NIGHT' from the new flick BOSS! Superb rap and beats by Yo Yo Honey Singh!!! Keep Dancing!!!!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Energy giving Foods! By Reema Sarin, Actor,Dancer & Founder BOLLYFIT

If you ever feel lethargic or fatigued after you eat, you're eating the wrong foods. It's that simple. The trick is to choose foods that release energy slowly and give you a gradual boost of long-lasting energy—and to stay away from high-glycemic foods that deliver an immediate, short-lived boost but leave you feeling sluggish and tired.
You can fight fatigue, and you can do it with every bite you eat. These five foods fit the bill and then some, as they're also easily digested and rich in nutrients that are essential to helping your body convert food into energy.
The best Energy giving foods are:
1. Beans
2. Spinach
3. Nuts and Seeds
4. Oatmeal
5. Yoghurt

Beans have been called a miracle food, and with good reason. Along with the numerous other health benefits they provide, beans are on the frontlines when it comes to fighting fatigue. Beans are a concentrated source of stable, slow-burning energy due to their unique nutritional composition: All types are low in fat, high in fiber, and provide a good balance of carbohydrates and protein. Take your pick of beans; they have a low glycemic rating (to help you avoid blood sugar spikes) and are loaded with a rich array of minerals including potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, and iron, all essential to producing energy. Additionally, super-performing beans—especially soybeans—are a good source of tryptophan.
The protein and high fiber content in beans work together to help balance blood sugar and prevent spikes and dips in energy. The fiber also promotes digestive health, encourages bowel regularity, and helps prevent constipation and weight gain. Thanks to the protein in beans, you get a gradual source of lasting energy. Beans make a terrific replacement for red meat, another rich source of protein and iron, but beans are lower in calories and are nearly fat-free. In addition, beans place a lesser burden on the digestive system than red meat, requiring less energy to be assimilated into the body. In other words, you're a lot more likely to feel tired and heavy after eating a steak than you are after eating a serving of beans.
The manganese and copper in beans protect the mitochondria in our cells that are responsible for energy production, while magnesium relaxes nerves and muscles and keeps blood circulating smoothly, keeping physical and mental fatigue at bay. Vitamin B1 (thiamin) contributes to energy production, and, along with potassium, supports proper muscle and nerve function. And last but not least-there's iron. Iron not only helps produce energy, it also boosts oxygen distribution throughout body, easing mental fatigue. Iron provides immune system support as well, and a healthy immune system makes you less susceptible to fatigue in all its forms.
Spinach is chock-full of nutrients that are essential for battling fatigue and helping our bodies perform at their peak. Not only is spinach one of the most iron-dense food sources on earth, it's also extremely rich in magnesium and potassium and is an excellent source of energy-supporting B-vitamins.
Iron plays a direct and important role in fighting fatigue. It's a known energy booster, helping the body produce energy by delivering oxygen to the cells and enabling them to perform optimally. Without sufficient oxygen, our cells slow down and can even shut down altogether. Low iron levels can cause both physical and mental fatigue, as well as anemia. Symptoms of anemia include tiredness, lack of energy, weakness, trouble concentrating, apathy, insomnia, and loss of appetite. Spinach and other leafy greens offer a high rate of iron for an extremely low caloric intake. Spinach also happens to be an excellent source of vitamin C, which boosts iron absorption.
Magnesium is another mineral that plays a vital role in the production of energy. In fact, it's involved in hundreds of enzymatic reactions throughout the body and directly affects our cardiovascular, digestive, and nervous systems; muscles; kidneys; liver; and brain. Magnesium is necessary for the production of energy, proper digestion, and the regulation of nerve and muscle tone. It's no wonder that a lack of magnesium can cause our brains and bodies to slow. Even a slight deficiency can result in reduced energy levels, which causes your body to work harder and can lead to exhaustion. Symptoms of magnesium deficiency include imbalanced blood sugar levels, depression, muscle weakness, muscle cramps, muscle spasms, muscle soreness, body tension, low energy, fatigue, difficulty sleeping, confusion, and lack of appetite. Like magnesium, potassium also helps muscles and nerves function properly. Physical overexertion is a common cause of potassium deficiency, but it can also occur if you become dehydrated due to illness or for any other reason. Symptoms of potassium deficiency include muscle weakness, confusion, and fatigue.
When to eat it: Incorporate spinach into your diet as much as you can, as often as possible. Try steamed spinach and organic eggs for breakfast; tuck spinach into your sandwich at lunch. You don't have to resort to a spinach salad or side dish at every meal. Spinach is so mild you can add it to just about anything—soups, stews, casseroles, dips, smoothies, and stir-fries.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds are nutrient-dense foods packed with high-quality protein and healthy omega-3 fats. Depending on the type you choose, you'll also get decent amounts of manganese; magnesium; phosphorus; iron; copper; riboflavin; vitamins B1, B2, B5, and B6; and tryptophan, all of which are involved in the production of energy.
Why they work: almonds, cashews, and hazelnuts are all good sources of magnesium, which helps fight muscle fatigue. The tryptophan found in sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, walnuts, and almonds battles emotional fatigue and promotes sleep, which can ease physical weariness. And all nuts and seeds are excellent sources of high-quality protein that our bodies can convert into lasting energy.
But what makes nuts and seeds such potent weapons in the war against fatigue is that they're a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are known as essential fats because they're the only fats our bodies actually require. These healthy fats not only lower the glycemic index of foods but are also a superior energy source. Fats stay in the stomach longer than carbohydrates and proteins; the result is a slow-burning fuel that provides long-lasting energy. Omega-3s help maintain healthy cells and are found naturally in almost all nuts and seeds. Flaxseeds and walnuts are particularly rich in these healthy fats. Omega-3s (and frequent consumption of nuts in particular) have been found to reduce the risk of becoming obese and aid in weight loss by slowing digestion, which results in a prolonged feeling of fullness, preventing extra snacking that can lead to weight gain, a common contributor to fatigue.
When to eat them: A daily dose of nuts is the way to go. Regular, moderate consumption is the key to reaping the health benefits of nuts and seeds. Prepack single servings to take with you during the day, and stash servings in the car as well as your desk, purse, or briefcase so you always have a healthy snack on hand. A serving is one ounce.

Oatmeal is regarded as a super food when it comes to supporting digestive health. For those reasons, many medical practitioners and nutritionists not only allow their diabetic patients to eat oatmeal but actually encourage it, especially since oatmeal helps maintain normal blood sugar levels.
Carbohydrates spend the least amount of time in the stomach, which means you get a quick boost of energy. But unlike processed, sugary cereals, whole oats don't result in a sugar crash. The high dietary fiber content in oats helps you feel full longer, preventing overeating throughout the day, which can lead to weight gain, sluggishness, and fatigue. Fiber is also crucial to healthy digestion; the soluble fiber in oats feeds the beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract and prevents energy-draining constipation. In addition to its high fiber content, oatmeal provides magnesium, protein, and phosphorus, three nutrients that significantly and directly affect energy levels, making it an ideal food for fighting fatigue. It's also a good source of vitamin B1 (thiamin), which is crucial for producing energy. Symptoms of too little B1 include a lack of energy and loss of appetite. Along with other nutrients, vitamin B1 helps support the breakdown and conversion to energy of the food we eat.
When to eat it: Eat oatmeal first thing in the morning for instant energy. Breakfast is especially important because it replenishes energy reserves and sets the tone for your day.

Yogurt Yogurt is really good for you, thanks to a combination of protein and gut-healthy probiotics.
Because it's soft, your body processes yogurt more quickly than a solid food, making it a great source of quick energy. But while you get a rapid result, it's also long-lasting, thanks to a good ratio of protein to carbohydrates. Protein stays in the stomach longer than carbohydrates, which translates into a steady source of energy. Yogurt also contains probiotics, beneficial bacteria that help maintain a healthy gut ecosystem by protecting against pathogens and helping your body eliminate harmful bacteria. Like fiber, probiotics are a powerful digestive aid and can help ease symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.
When to eat it: Absolutely any time. Aside from its health benefits, one of the best things about yogurt is its versatility. It's a great afternoon or pre-workout snack because it will give you a quick hit of energy. But you can also add healthy toppings like oats, ground flaxseed, nuts, and fruit to make a hearty breakfast. The plain variety works well at the dinner table in place of sour cream or as a salad dressing base, and you can doctor it up with frozen berries for dessert.

Reema Sarin
Founder ‘BOLLYFIT’
Dancer, Model & Actor

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Exercise Myths Simplified! By Reema Sarin, BOLLYFIT Girl

What kind of exercise -- and how much -- is best when you're trying to lose weight?

The two things that stop people from losing weight with exercise are either boredom or injury!
The truth is that weight loss is about creating a calorie deficit, that is, burning more calories than you take in. So, always start with something you can do, like walking or working out on an elliptical machine or exercise bike.
Swimming is a great weight loss activity.
While swimming is great for increasing lung capacity, toning muscles, and even helping to burn off excess tension, the surprising truth is that unless you are swimming for hours a day, it may not help you lose much weight.
The buoyancy of the water is supporting your body, so you do not end up working as hard as it would if, say, you were moving on the ground, for e.g. like ‘running’!. 
Also, it is not uncommon to feel ravenous when you come out of the water. So, it may actually cause you to eat more than you normally would, making it harder to follow your diet!
If you are not Sweat alot, you're not working hard enough!
Sweating is not necessarily an indicator of exertion. Infact, Sweating is your body’s way of cooling itself.
It's possible to burn a significant number of calories without breaking a sweat: Try taking a walk or doing some light weight training. 
Yoga can help with all sorts of back pain.
The truth is that yoga can help with back pain, but it's not equally good for all types.
If your back pain is muscle-related, then yes, the yoga stretches and some of the positions can definitely help. It can also help build a stronger core, which for many people is the answer to lower back pain.
But if your back problems are related other problems (such as a ruptured disc) yoga is not likely to help. What's more, it could actually irritate the injury and cause you more pain.
If you do have back pain, get your doctor's OK before starting any type of exercise program.
Our ‘Take’ on Strength Training
You will always burn more calories with cardio (aerobic) exercise than with strength or resistance training.
Strength training itself will not lead to an appreciable amount of weight loss because it just doesn't burn enough calories. And the theory, that more muscle mass equates to more calories burned, even when you're at rest? It's a myth!
That's not to say that strength training isn't important for the overall health of the body. But when it comes to burning the most calories, go for cardiovascular exercise. Aerobic base-building workouts are the best, where you alternate between moderate and higher intensity, either within the same workout or on alternate days.
Cross-training is highly recommended, that is, doing a range of different activities during your workouts. Not only does this help you keep from getting bored, it's better for your body. Doing different activities recruits different muscle groups. You're also less likely to develop an injury, since doing the same thing day after day creates wear patterns on your joints. 4 Top Picks

An Aerobic workout boosts your metabolism for hours after your Workout!
This is true! But the calorie burn is probably not nearly as much as you think!  
While your metabolism will continue to burn at a slightly higher rate after you finish an aerobic workout, the amount is not significant. In fact, it allows you to burn only about 20 extra calories for the day, which is marginal and it doesn't really count towards your overall caloric burn.
As long as you feel OK when you're working out, you're probably not overdoing it.
One of the biggest mistakes people tend to make when starting or returning to an exercise program is doing too much too soon. Infact, in most cases, you don't really feel the strain until a day or two later!
No matter how good you feel when you return to an activity after an absence, you should never try to achieve how much or how hard you worked in the past.  Even if you don't feel it at the moment, you'll feel it in time, and it could lead to some sort of muscle injury!
Machines are a safer way to Exercise
Although it may seem as if an exercise machine automatically puts your body in the right position and helps you do all the movements correctly, that's only true if the machine is properly adjusted for your weight and height.
However, you can make just as many mistakes in form and function, and have just as high a risk of injury, on a machine as if you work out with free weights or do any other type of non machine workout.
If you are not feeling some pain if you're going to gain any benefits
Of all the fitness rumors ever to have surfaced, experts agree that the ‘no pain-no gain’ holds the most potential for harm. While you should expect to have some degree of soreness a day or two after working out that's very different from feeling pain while you are working out.
A fitness activity should definitely not hurt while you are doing it, and if it does, then either you are doing it wrong, or you already have an injury.
As for ‘working through the pain’ it is advisable that if it hurts, to stop, rest, and see if the pain goes away. If it doesn't go away, or if it begins again or increases after you start to work out, please definitely see a doctor!

Reema Sarin
Founder ‘BOLLYFIT’
Actor, Model, Anchor, Bollywood Dancer & Choreographer

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