The beginning of the festive season is here and along with the arrival of goddess Durga, it is time to meet family, friends and make memories. The spirit of Navratri is at its peak, still wondering how to fast for nine days and keep yourself healthy? Avoid having fried and oil-laden foods, switch to healthier alternatives? HealthifyMe will help you to relish the healthy festival delicacies, without missing out on nutrition. So, let’s get started and learn about 10 Navratri Special Healthy Foods.
10 Foods that you can have this Navratri
Subudana or Sago is a popular superfood that people enjoy during Navratri. Did you know that the starch is extracted from the tropical palm tree root? Though these little balls of pearls are bland, they soak up all the added flavour and aroma that you add to it. It is great in providing adequate carbohydrates that keep you energized for the day. Also, it contains small amounts of protein, fat, fiber and is rich in zinc. So, you can expect a wholesome package of nutrients from this food.
2. Buckwheat Flour
Flour is a staple ingredient of North India. However, refined flours are loaded with calories and have a limited or almost no nutritional value. Buckwheat flour, also called as Kuttu Atta is an alternative that has tremendous nutritional benefits. It is fibrous, which is necessary to keep you feeling full for a considerable amount of time. Since it has a well-balanced amino-acids profile, it is also rich in protein, helping lower cholesterol and prevent gallstone formation. Buckwheat flour is also gluten-free. So, you don’t have to worry about the cramping and bloating of your stomach.
3. Fox Nuts
You may already know this one for Navratri food. Makhana is a great munchable snack and you can have this food guilt-free, unlike the others. Because it is a good source of carbs and has tons of micronutrients. For example, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, etc. that strengthens bones and also lowers blood pressure. Also, if you are diabetic, fox nuts manage blood sugar level in the body as it balances your insulin levels. The astringent properties present in makhana can also help control diarrhea.
4. Legumes and Pulses
In an Indian household, legumes and Pulses are good sources of protein that are generally consumed daily. Even if you are fasting, you must not miss out on the essential nutrients of these. You must include this food into your Navratri diet. It can be called a wholesome food that will provide you energy and strength. Not just protein, but pulses are excellent sources of fibre, vitamins and minerals. They also have significant anticancer effects as it possesses sufficient antioxidants and anti-carcinogenic properties. Adding Legumes and Pulses in your Navratri diet will meet all your dietary requirements.
5. Dry Fruits
Most of us love dry fruits. They are healthy, nutritious and flavourful. Also, a great addition to your Navratri healthy food. Dry fruits like almonds, cashews and raisins have the ability to improve blood sugar levels, lower blood cholesterol and also reduce inflammation. They are a rich source of antioxidants and fibre. As per fresh fruits, dry fruits contain up to 3.5 times the fiber, vitamins and minerals. You can have a handful of dry fruit for snacking or even make a dry fruit smoothie which will definitely keep you full for the day.
6. Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Fasting for nine days may be a great detox for your body but you need to include the best seasonal fresh produce to suffice for the basic nutrients. Fruits and vegetables are exceptional to keep yourself active. They keep the body hydrated and also offer the best of nutrients and minerals. A fruit bowl or a crunchy raw salad is a refreshing choice that you can make if you are not in the mood to cook. A salad contains all the nutrients that you usually have when you opt for cooked meals. So, save some time and grab a fresh fruit bowl.
7. Coconut Water
Being a tropical country, Indian summers are tough, and the only resort that quenches your thirst when you are out in the open is a sip of fresh coconut water. Irrespective of seasons, coconut is sold throughout the year and if you are fasting for Navratri, coconut water can be a good inclusion. There are plenty of benefits that you can get from coconut water, such as; Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Potassium. It nourishes your body and keeps you hydrated.
8. Barnyard Millet
You might be familiar with its name, Sama ke chawal. This flavourful food will surely be a mouth-watering choice, whether you opt for a Khichidi or a plate of warm upma. These millets are a good source of protein, carbohydrate, fiber, and notably have more micronutrients like iron and zinc. A single serving (25g) of barnyard millet contains 75 calories and 1.5g of protein. According to researchers, it helps in keeping cardiovascular diseases at bay. It is also slowly digestible which can help you feel satiated.
9. Herbs and Spices
We don’t expect you to give up on those herbs and spices. India is known for their spices and food without any of these could not be tasteful as per the expectations. Also, since you can’t add salt to your food, you can spice it up with cumin, cinnamon, coriander and chillies. Many herbs are known to have properties that prevent heart diseases, diabetes, etc. So, don’t miss out on your daily spice.
10. Water Chestnut
Have you ever heard about water vegetables? Water Chestnut is one that tends to be the favourite for some people as they love having singhare ka halwa. Besides its amazing taste, it also has health benefits, namely, it is absolutely low in calories, has an abundance of disease-fighting antioxidants, potassium, copper and protein. It is a highly versatile and flavourful addition to your Navratri food.
So, to sum up, these are the various healthy foods that you can try on Navratri. Healthy food is not necessarily boring. Listen to your body and have a balanced diet. Try to not miss on any of the essential nutrients as you fast. Remember to always keep yourself hydrated, whether on coconut water or juices. Happy Navratri, enjoy and stay safe.