Tuesday, 28 March 2017

The goodness of yogurt, we all know but let's revise : A quick read

Yogurt Everywhere

Pick any weight loss regime and you’ll find a recommendation for having yogurt/curd there. We all know that yogurt carries enormous benefits and is very good for the overall body. However, in this post, I want to highlight why yogurt should be part of our daily diet.

Most Indian cuisines serve raita, which is yogurt mixed with grated or finely diced vegetables. Whether  we are dining at any hotel or at in-house parties, raita has a special place and people do experiment with yogurt with putting unconventional vegetables/fruits to make unique raitas.  Lassi and chach are two very common yogurt based Indian drinks And who can forget the divine taste of Panchamrit which is an essential part of prasad in every Hindu pooja!!

Traditionally, it is believed that having yogurt with meals helps in digestion and strengthens the gut. Scientifically, raita is a way of introducing good bacteria into our gastrointestinal (GI) tract.
On an average 250mg of yogurt has 300mg of calcium, which is 30-40% of most people’s daily calcium needs. The same serving has 8-9g protein, about 10-15% of an average person’s daily protein needs. The protein from yogurt is complete and easy to digest. It is also a great source of B vitamins, phosphorus, and potassium (it has almost as much potassium as a banana).

A trick

Now the best part is, vegetable which most of the people hate like lauki (bottle gourd) or beetroot can be mixed in yogurt to make delicious raitas. Mixing sugary fruits with yogurt is a good way to balance their sweetness and tame our sweet cravings. It is the source of antioxidants and friendly bacterias to boost our immune system. Also, using hung curd (yogurt), a tasty sandwich spread can be made which can replace our very homely but fatty mayonnaise. 

So, add two cups of yogurt in your daily diet and give your body the much needed natural calcium. 

Did you know
Yogurt sets up an efficient little factory in the intestinal tract and manufactures B vitamins for us.

Other Benefits

  • Prevent Osteoporosis
  • Helps in High Blood Pressure
  • Settle hunger for a longer duration
  • Good for lactose intolerant people
  • Give benefits to skin and hair
  • low in calories  

Monday, 27 March 2017

Osteoporosis (Low bone density) - A quick read

If you are in your 30s then let me tell you one thing. Usually the build-up of bone occurs till the age of 30 years and after that maintenance is key to keep your bones safe. 

Why you should know about Osteoporosis 

Women are prone to certain diseases and need to take steps in the right direction early on to stay healthy. Osteoporosis  or low bone density is one of such disease. Osteoporosis is a condition of fragile bone with an increased risk of fractures. This disease weakens bone and increases risk of bones breaking. As per a research, one in three women above the age of 50 years will experience a fracture worldwide. And women with weak bone mass have high risk of developing Osteoporosis. However,Osteoporosis is a largely preventable problem.


Our bones are composed of protein, collagen, and calcium, all of which give bone its strength. With time bones lose their strength which is a natural thing. But this is dangerous when decrease in bone strength happens early in women's life. The bone mass decreases after 35 years of age, and bone loss occur more rapidly in women after menopause. Women with Osteoporosis usually see no symptoms until they get any fracture.Then an x-ray can diagnose the condition of having Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis can cause either cracking of bones or collapsing.  The spine, hips, ribs, and wrists are common areas of bone fractures from osteoporosis although osteoporosis-related fractures can occur in almost any skeletal bone.


•          Smoking
•          Lack of exercise
•          Alcohol consumption
•          Poor nutrition food
•          Arthritis
•          Low Vitamin D
•          Low estrogen levels in women which may occur in menopause or with early surgical removal of both ovaries
•          Excess blood loss in menstruation in young women which is associated with low estrogen
•          Hyperthyroidism, a condition wherein too much thyroid hormone is produced by the thyroid gland

Did you know
Taking any calcium supplement don't help in keeping bones safe. Calcium intake should be taken based on age, condition (pregnant, nursing, elderly) and other medication.


•          Lifestyle changes quitting cigarette smoking, excessive alcohol intake, exercising regularly, and consuming a balanced diet with good calcium and vitamin D
•          Medications that stop bone loss and increase bone strength and that increase bone formation (take consultation from doctor)
•          Eat greens dark greens
•          Start your day with Vit C
•          Eat figs, almond, coconut, Tofu, Fish

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Low Vitamin D Level : A quick read

Vit D and connection with Depression

Depression is a common condition this day. We all fed up and feel miserable at a certain point in time in our lives. Most of the time these feeling last for few days or for a week and don't interfere much in our day to day lives. However, if these feelings persist for more than two weeks, this could an indication of depression. 

These day whenever doctors are seeing any woman (especially mothers), they first ask to go for a Vit D test. I see a point in this as recent studies have proved that there is some kind of connection between Vit D level and brain's functioning. 

Exactly how vitamin D works in the brain isn’t fully understood yet. However, Vit D receptors have been found in many parts of the brain. Some of those parts are the ones which are linked to the development of depression. Many anti-depressant medicines work by increasing the amount of chemicals called monoamines and Vit D affects the level of monoamines. This way the conclusion is being made that with increasing a number of monoamines Vit D may help treat depression.

Other issues

Other than this, Vit D deficiency causes bone aches (which was my case after pregnancy) and fatigue. After Vibhu's (my son) birth, I got my blood test done; my Vit D was 6 whereas it should be around 40. 

As per a recent study around 65-70% Indians are Vit D deficient presently. Most of us stay inside and don't get much exposure to the sun. Aging also causes slowness in sunshine absorption in the body so for above 50 people, Vit D deficiency is common these days.

Did you know
Exposure to the sun enhances mood and energy.

How to improve Vit D level

·        Increase Sun exposure. A good time is morning sunshine.
·        Vit D supplements
·        Eat food that can provide Vit D (dairy products, orange juice, soy milk, cheese, mushrooms, egg yolks, and fish) 

So don’t delay and get all your tests done if you have aching bones and you feel depressed without any reason.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Why Today's History TV Soaps Are Harmful For Kids..

Most of us remember the TV epics Ramayan and Mahabharat. With these fabulous mythological series, we have witnessed our glorious history and chronicles. As per my parents, people used to worship the character of Ram in Ramanand Sagar’s Ramayan. They put agar-batties in front of TV before serial used to start and many used to see it folding their hand in pranam mudra. I personally love Mahabharat more because I have watched all of its episodes. With each episode, I used to eagerly wait for next Sunday so that I could see what happened next. After these two biggest epics of TV entertainment, various mythological serials have been made. A few on Hanuman, some on Krishna and many were re- portrayal of Ramayan and Mahabharat. Except Ramanand Sagar’s Shree Krishna, none of them could give me that excitement again which I used to feel while watching B R Chopra’s Mahabharat series. Along with these mythological TV soaps, we have seen plenty of historian series. Some of them were absolutely stunning and breathe taking. Let me name a few of them. Bharat EK Khoj, Chanakya, The great Maratha and The sward of Tipu Sultan.

TV has changed a lot since our childhood. We were still struggling to understand what Ekta Kappor (and others) was trying to depict about Indian family systems with her daily soap operas, the Indian TV has stumbled upon a topical genre of serials known as “New Age Historical serial” to further dramatize and stereotype mythical and historical facts and characters. With this blog, I want to raise my concern the way today’s mythological and history serials are bending the truth and changing the past. Very cleverly today’s serials are enjoying the freedom of showing anything by simply putting on a disclaimer for viewers to understand. These historian series are manipulating facts and events on their will to create Masala out of our history. I must say, with new technology, these history serials are using bigger and bigger sets and 3D animation to imitate things.

Kids, these days, are a big fan of these history serials. I know many families where kids are dying to watch TV serials like Chakravartin Ashok Samrat, Prithviraj Chauhan, Maharana Pratap and Chandragupta Maurya. Tactfully TV channels advertise them with keeping in mind the huge crowd of kids who easily get inspired by lucrative promotions of such history TV serials. Not only kids, even adults are followers of history TV serials. Chakravartin Ashok Samrat was a big hit in my family.
My family members used to finish all their engagements before 9 PM so that they could enjoy this serial. But this has been in controversy since its inception due to numerous inaccuracies. The presence of Chanakya in Ashoka’s time itself made me doubts over the authenticity of sources used to write the script. To fix my doubts l, I went through many e-books and websites to understand what happened during Ashoka’s time. Sadly there was no connection between reality and what was shown in Chakravartin Ashok Samrat TV soap. Another glorified version of history serial was Jodha-Akbar.  This was absolutely useless in terms of showing who actually was Akbar. But, the saga is known for its minute long disclaimer. I have a list of such history TV soaps which are playing with facts and showing what they can easily sell to viewers.

The biggest fear here I see is, our kids are watching a version of our history which is a way disparate than what actually Indian olden days have witnessed

. I know, they are going to read their history books as part of their curriculum but visuals are more powerful than textbooks which everyone hates. I have seen kids discussing how Ashoka (of TV serial) was fighting with a group of 50 people just to save his girlfriend. This proves that they are able to remember what serial has served them. I also agree that we can’t convince kids to stop watching such fictitious TV soaps. But one thing we parents can do is to keep telling them that they are fabricated and mythical. The best version is there in our history textbooks. If not there, then we can help them to reach the content of an authenticated internet source. Be careful, all internet stuff is also not genuine. Our role as parents is to help our young minds in differentiating between myth and truth.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

होली और होली के गाने..

होली का दिन हो और अपनी हिंदी फिल्मो के गाने न बजे ऐसा कैसे हो सकता है.. रंग बरसे भीगे चुनर वाली और आज ना छोड़ेंगे बस हमजोली.. जैसे गाने जब तक न बजे लगता ही नहीं कि होली आ गई है. इन गानों का बजना और लोगों का थिरकना जैसे किसी परंपरा की तरह हो गया है. होली के त्योहार का उत्साह बढ़ाने में बॉलीवुड ने हमारा खूब साथ दिया है. 1958 से लेकर आज तक फिल्मों में होली के गीत फिल्माएं जाते हैं और वे सुर्खियां भी बटोरते हैं.

होली पर गानों का इतिहास काफी पुराना है. पहले के समय में लोग होली पर 'फाग' गाते थे. इसके साथ ही बड़े सारे गाने राधा-कृष्ण की होली को दर्शाने वाले होते थे. जैसे "आज ब्रिज में होली  रे रसिया..". 1981 में आई फिल्म सिलसिला का 'रंग बरसे भीगे चुनर वाली..' होली पर गाये और बजाये जाने वाले गानों में सबसे लोकप्रिय है. असल में ये गाना काफी पुराना है जिसकी जड़े अवध में गाये जाने वाले एक तरह के फाग में है. अभिताभ बच्चन जी खुद ही कई बार बताया कि ये गाना उन्होंने सबसे पहले अपनी पिता जी, हरिवंश राय बच्चन जी से सुना था. फिल्म में इस गाने का रूप थोड़ा बदला पर मिठास और भावनाओ में कमी नही थी. 2003 में आई फिल्म बाग़बान में अमिताभ बच्चन और हेमा मालिनी पर फिल्माए गए 'गीत होली खेले रघुवीरा..' ने भी लोगों के दिलों को छू लिया. ये गाना भी एक पुराने फ़ाग का ही थोड़ा आधुनिकीकरण था. मुझे याद है एक बार बचपन में मैं अपनी मासी के यहाँ होली पर थी तो गांव के सारे बड़े लोग एक साथ मिलकर ये गीत 'होली खेले रघुवीरा..' ही गा रहे थे. पहले कहा थे ये आज के बाजे, बस ढोलक और मंजीरे थे और उनके साथ ही ये गाना इतना मधुर था कि किसी और यन्त्र की जरूरत नही थी. मुझे उस समय से ये गाना पसंद है.

अब इस ब्लॉग की मुख्य बात पर आती हूं. क्या आपको भी लगता है की समय के साथ होली के गानों की मिठास कम हो गई है? उनमे वो बात नही रही जो हमारे बचपन के गानों में थी? मुझे तो कम से कम यही लगता है. पुराने गानों से शुरू करू तो 1958 में आई फिल्म मदर इंडिया का 'होली आई रे कन्हाई..' किसे याद नहीं होगा. ये मेरा सबसे पसंदीदा होली का गाना है. इसके अलावा वी शांताराम की फिल्म नवरंग का गीत 'जा रे हट नटखट..' आज भी झूमने पर मजबूर कर देता है. 1970 में आई राजेश खन्ना और आशा पारेख स्टारर फिल्म कटी पंतग का गीत 'आज न छोडेंग़े हमजोली..' विधवा कुप्रथा के न केवल खिलाफ था, बल्कि प्रेम का असली प्रतीक भी बन गया था. आज भी साल 1975 में आई फिल्म शोले के गीत 'होली के दिन दिल खिल जाते हैं..' होली पर जरूर बजता है.1982 की फिल्म राजपूत का 'भागी रे भागी ब्रिज की बाला..' भी होली का एक मधुर गीत है. 1982 की ही फिल्म नदिया के पार का गाना "जोगी जी.." क्या खूब गाना है. 1993 में आई फिल्म डर का गाना 'अंग से अंग लगाना सजन हमें ऐसे रंग लगाना..' किसे याद नहीं होगा!

इस के बाद के सारे होली के गानों में मुझे कुछ ना कुछ कम लगती है. 2003 की फिल्म बाग़बान को इससे अलग कहूँगी पर बाकी सब गाने अज़ीब सा मॉर्डन टच लिए हुए है. ये ब्लॉग लिखते हुए पड़ोस में अभी ही आई फिल्म जॉली LLB 2 का गाना "गो पागल.." चल रहा है. गाना तो होली का ही है पर मुझे झूमने पर मजबूर नही करता. और ऐसा ही हाल 2013 में आई ये जवानी है दीवानी का गाना 'बलम पिचकारी' का भी है. शायद मुझे इनके चित्रण के परेशानी है या फिर गाने के शब्दो से. ऐसे गाने ही आज के युवाओं को हिम्मत देते है हद से आगे बढ़ कर होली के नाम पर किसी को परेशान करने का. खैर ये मेरी परेशानी है कि नए गाने मुझे कम पसंद आते है. पर वो फाग गाने वाले लोगो की टोलिया जब मोहल्लो में निकलती थी तो नज़ारा कुछ और ही होता था. झांझ,मृदंग और ढपली के बजने से चारों ओर उमंग ही उमंग होता था. लडकियां घर की छतो से ही इन टोलियो पर रंग डालती थी. और ये थोड़ी से मर्यादित मस्ती ही मुझे पसंद थी और आज भी पसंद है.

बुरा न मानो होली है.. पर हद में !

'बुरा ना मानो होली है..' कुछ ऐसी ही बातो से शुरू होने वाला त्यौहार बनाया ही इसलिए गया होगा कि लोगो के रिश्तो में मजबूती आए. जो दूर है, खिंचे खिंचे है वो पास आ सके और बिना बुरा माने एक दूसरे को रंग लगा सके. होली सिर्फ त्योहार नहीं है.. यह बसंत के आने की ख़ुशी का व प्रेम-प्रणव के चिंतन का मूल है और धर्म की अधर्म पर विजय का प्रतीक है. यह रंगों का, हास-परिहास का भी पर्व है. यह वह त्योहार है, जिसमें लोग हर सोच से बिल्कुल परे स्वयं को स्वतंत्र महसूस करते हैं. हर तरह का गुस्सा और घृणा 'बुरा न मानो होली है' की ऊंची आवाज में डूबकर घुल-मिल जाता है. इसलिए शायद 'बुरा न मानो होली' है की करतल ध्वनि होली की लंबी परम्परा का हिस्सा है।

पर मुझे ये सब बातें काफी सालों के बाद समझ आई. पहले तो लगता था कि ये 'बुरा न मानो होली है' को लोग जरुरत से ज्यादा ही उपयोग करते है. ये लाइन मुझे हमेशा से ही बुरी मंशा वाले लोगो का हथियार लगती थी. किसी को भी 'बुरा न मानो होली है' कहा और रंग लगा दिया. कहते हैं होली 'मदनोत्सव' है. मतलब 'काम' का उत्सव. ये वो काम नही है जो आप समझ रहे है. ये कामदेव वाला काम है और होली को इसलिए ही मदनोत्सव कहा गया क्योंकि इस दिन काम को भी अपना रूप दिखाने की छूट होती है. पर काम को भी मर्यादा में ही रहना चाहिए. छूट है तो इसका मतलब ये नही की कोई कुछ भी करे. जब तक वह मर्यादा में रहता है, उसे भगवान की विभूति माना जाता है. जब वह मर्यादा छोड़ देता है तो आत्मघाती बन जाता है, और शिव का तीसरा नेत्र (विवेक) उसे भस्म कर देता है. भगवान शिव द्वारा किया गया काम-संहार हमें यही समझाता है.

अभी कुछ दिनों पहले ही टीवी में एक विज्ञापन देखा. एक बिखरे बालो वाला लड़का जो पूरी तरह से होली की मस्ती में है एक डरी-सहमी सी लड़की को जबरदस्ती गुलाल लगता है वो भी 'बुरा न मानो होली है' बोलकर. लड़की पहले तो चुप रहती है पर अगले ही पल लड़के को करार जवाब भी देती है. आगे की लाइन्स बता कर मैं विज्ञापन के सामान का प्रचार नही करना चाहती पर एक बात जो मुझे पसंद आई कि विज्ञापन की ख़त्म होने से पहले एक सन्देश दिया गया है. "होली को मनमानी करने का जरिया ना बनाए..मर्यादा में रहे.." वैसे कमाल की बात है कि ऐसे बातों को विज्ञापन के जरिये लोगो तक पहुचाया जा रहा है. पर क्या कर सकते है समय के साथ कुछ लोगो का स्तर इतना गिर गया है कि उन्हें ये भी समझना पड़ रहा है कि मर्यादा में रहो! रही सही कसर फिल्मो के होली वालो गानों ने पूरी कर दी. एक अज़ीब सा भद्दा पन है सब नए गानों में. होली की मस्ती सीमाएं लाँघ रही है और कुछ में तो लड़कियों को जरूरत से ज्यादा छूट देते दिखाया गया है.

सारे ऐसे ब्लोग्स और पोस्ट्स जो होली को सुरक्षित तरीके से मानाने के टिप्स दे रहे है सबमे एक ऐसा पॉइंट जरूर है. "अपने बच्चो पर नज़र रखे, कही उन्हें कोई परेशान ना कर रहा हो.." ," होली ऐसे लोगो के बीच मनाए जो आपकी मर्ज़ी का भी ख्याल रख सके.." मतलब एकदम साफ है. आज कल के समय में जब हमें हर तरह के शोषण के खिलाफ कानून बनाना पड़ रहा है, मुझे डर है एक दिन ऐसा भी ना आ जाए कि होली के लिए भी नियम बनने लगे. खैर, होली त्यौहार ही है हर तरह का मैल साफ करने का, मन का मैल भी! धो डालिये इस होली मन के मैल को और जम कर मनाइये होली का पर्व जो सामाजिक समरसता, भाईचारा, स्नेह, प्रेम, उन्माद, सांस्कृतिक सामंजस्य का प्रतीक है.

होली की शुभकामनाए :)

Friday, 10 March 2017

#ColgateMagicalStories Mission Immunity flower : A story

“I’m blogging my #ColgateMagicalstories at BlogAdda in association with Colgate.

My son simply loves stories, especially long ones which can help him easily go in good night’s sleep. To be honest I am a fan of my husband’s story making skills. He keeps in mind the innocence of our son and bends even mythological stories. When he recites those stories in front of our curious little champ, I enjoy the conversation that happens between father and son. My husband beautifully explains things to our son and after repeatedly listening to the same story, my son demands a new one.

I would like to thank BlogAdda and Colgate-Palmolive (India) limited who launched the blogging campaign #ColgateMagicalStories. After reading the campaign details, my mind immediately recalled every day want of stories for my son and I thought it would be both fun and challenge to create stories around space characters printed on the back side of Colgate special pack. From registering to this campaign till I received those three sets of Colgate, I was introducing the whole new world of Space and planets to my son. I was preparing the base so that when I recite stories around space characters, my son don’t lose his interest because of any gray sides. Finally, packs arrived and with the help of my husband, I cut and arranged the space characters from the pack.  Then we both brainstormed and created a new story for our son around those assembled space themes.  

Here goes the story: Mission Immunity flower

Once kids from all over the world started falling sick 😩. Some unknown kind of disease started making kids weak and less energetic. Doctors were trying their best with different medicines but none of the kids were recovering. They were lazy and didn’t want to go out and play. A team of senior doctors started researching the cure of this strange kiddy disease. With their studies and analysis, they found that there was an immunity flower called “Raksha” which could help in making medicine for this disease. But there was a problem 😥. This flower Raksha” was so rare and had its garden in some other planet called “Vismaya” 💫. This news came out and all the parents started asking help from KSRO (Kids Space Research Organization) to send anyone for collecting those immunity flowers from planet Vismaya

After so much of talks, KSRO decided that two of the kiddy Astronauts, "Vibhu and Adhya” would go to planet Vismaya and would bring plenty of immunity flowers. With the help of a spaceship, Vibhu and Adhya reached the space center of the galaxy. There they met with another Astronaut Uncle, “Virendra”.  Virendra uncle helped both of them in finding the way to reach planet Vismaya.  But to be on safe side, Virendra uncle told them that he would confirm the presence of immunity flowers at planet Vismaya with the help of a rover. When rover confirmed the presence of a good number of immunity flowers at planet Vismaya, both the kiddy Astronauts, Vibhu and Adhya, started their journey towards planet Vismaya.

After reaching the planet Vismaya, Vibhu and Adhya started plucking immunity flowers. While they were putting the flowers into the bag they carried, a strange shadow started moving around them. They both came closer in fear of this odd shadow. Next minute they saw something like a flying soccer appeared in front of them. A gate opened from that big flying soccer like thing and a man with green body came out of it. He was having a gun in his hand. Green Man was an alien and he was also there to take immunity flowers.  Green Man asked Vibhu and Adhya to stop plucking flowers anymore. He warned them to shoot his gun. Green Man had a freeze gun which could freeze anyone. Vibhu and Adhya immediately stopped plucking the flowers and came out of the flower garden. Green Man laughed assuming that Vibhu and Adhya got scared of him. 

But Vibhu and Adhya were brave kids. They quickly made a plan to fight with Green Man. Vibhu started making fun of Green Man so that his concentration could break. Meanwhile, Adhya took the gun out of her back –pack and warned Green Man to drop his gun else she would burn him. Adhya had a fire gun which could emit fire balls. Both, Vibhu and Adhya, fought boldly with Green Man. When Green man’s gun stopped working, he ran away sitting in his flying soccer like plain. Vibhu and Adhya then packed full their bags with immunity flowers and returned back to the space center. There they told everything, about the Green Man and the fight, to Virendra uncle. Virendra uncle explained them that flying soccer like plain is called UFO.

After doing some rest, Vibhu and Adhya, then asked Virendra uncle about other planets of our galaxy. Virendra uncle buzzed them to go and meet with a few nearby planets. So, Vibhu and Adhya, wore their space suits and first reached to planet Sun. In their notebook, they noted down one unique thing about Sun. Then they met with big Jupiter, beautiful Saturn, happy Mars and angry Venus. For each of them, they wrote one unique thing in their notebook. Then they came back to space center but on the way, they noticed a moving object with burning tail. They asked Virendra uncle about that burning object and he unfolded that it was a Comet. 

Vibhu and Adhya then came back on earth and handed all immunity flowers to the senior doctors. With the help of immunity flowers Raksha, doctors made a medicine which cured all the ailing and sick kids. And since then All is well. Kids are happy and healthy 😊!