COVID-19 forced people to think about immunity: Neha Ranglani

Khevna Pandit
Monday, 7 September 2020

Sakal Times spoke with Neha Ranglani, a health coach and dietician, who has come on board to talk about the show 'Why Do I Put on Weight?' to know more about the science behind diets.

National Nutrition Week, celebrated every year in the first week of September, often emphasises on the importance of eating well. However, for most people, weight is always synonymous to calories. It is a little-known fact that science also plays an important role when it is about the number on the scales. Sakal Times had a candid conversation with Neha Raglani, health coach and dietician, who reiterated the same. 

Speaking about the science behind weight loss on the show 'Why Do I Put on Weight?' on Sony BBC Earth, here's what she had to say: 

Why, according to you, are people unable to lose weight? 

A: Most people talk about food when they talk about weight loss, but the food is just one piece of the puzzle. Our health is not only the food that we eat. It is our stress levels, and emotions and how we deal with them. It is everything that we are doing from morning to evening -- all of that affects our health. We are all about emotions, and that affects our health in a great, great way. The body doesn't understand numbers; it understands nutrients. 

So, eating healthy is a part of the puzzle. I always say that you can eat a salad and put on weight and you can eat a cake and not put on weight; it is totally your mindset. Because when you're stressed out your cortisol levels are really high. The body is producing a lot of hormones. We have something going on constantly in our lives that is contributing to the stress. If your stress levels are always high, your digestion will shut, your immune system doesn't work well. In that situation, even if you eat the healthiest of food, your body is not going to absorb it. 

Nowadays, people tend to self-diagnose themselves by reading up on the internet. What are your thoughts about that? 

A: The internet has anything and everything, and there's no copy-paste to help. Picking out anything from the internet can be detrimental to health. People should understand their body better, and perhaps take help from a coach or a guide who can help them with what their body needs. 

You've also spoken about how science is a very big part of the diet and weight loss. Could you tell us a little about that as well? 

A: It is a lot about instant gratification, you see the kind of diets that are coming up these days, the fads and all, it is more about what is wanted instantly. What you do today will determine your future. It's not about you following your diet today, and one week later you return to normal -- you can't expect your body not to show and adverse effect. Everyone wants short cuts, so in that sense, they're damaging their health a lot. 

How do you think COVID-19 has contributed when it comes to self-care?

A: I think COVID-19 has done well to people who were eating unhealthy because they've been forced to be healthy now. Immunity is the only option that they're left with. They're going to make sure that they live their lifestyle in a way that's conducive for their body, and they'll make sure they're not overworking or overstressing because COVID-19 has shown that life is very fragile and anything can happen at any time. 

You really don't know what's going to happen tomorrow, so there's no point stressing about things you can't control. So, in that sense, people have understood that they need to eat healthily, include a lot of fruits and greens. People have gotten a lot of things about their health on track now.

Watch 'Why Do I put on Weight' on 12th September at 7.00 pm on Sony BBC Earth

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