Yoga, Naturopathy Expert - Answered on Jul 25, 2023
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Let me tackle this individually.
Let’s look at your daughter first.
We often define health by weight. While it is certainly an important factor, body functions -- whether hormonal, digestive and/or nervous -- are equally, if not more, important.
Given the major shifts in your daughter's routine, both during her swimming days and workout days, her body must be going through a lot. And let’s not forget the hormonal changes happening during this age.
I would suggest that she takes a mental break from thinking about diet and exercise for at least 2-3 months.
This does not mean she should overeat and not do basic physical exercises. Instead, opt for a balanced diet (lots of fruits and less of grains and processed foods).
Include a little physical activity (not workouts) but more playful activities. Light walks or basic jogging, yoga or any other sport of her choice like badminton, etc, will keep the body remain active without stressing the hormones.
She can also start basic pranayama (deep breathing exercises) to balance her energies and lower stress levels.
As far as her menstrual issues are concerned, I would suggest you meet an ayurvedic practitioner. They will identify if there is any possible imbalance of the elements and recommend ayurvedic medicines if required.
Shalini, let’s look at your concerns now.
A big belly can be due to many reasons -- excess fat retention, water retention, bloating, etc.
You should focus on addressing the root cause and not on weight loss through strict dieting.
I suggest you follow some basic principles of food intake, starting with a detox for your stomach.
Have a glass of petha (white pumpkin) juice (recipe here) in the morning. Avoid eating anything else for an hour. Do this for a month.
Avoid fried food and restrict non-veg and heavily processed foods during this period.
You can eat a full meal, but avoid eating after sunset.
Spices can be therapeutic as well as harmful, depending upon consumption.
If you practice yoga, then do Kapalbhati pranayam for 5-10 minutes in the morning.
Half an hour after your meals, go for a stroll.
The growth of a child is influenced by poor or adequate nutrition, environment, exercise, hormones, serious or chronic illnesses, etc.
Based on his activity and nutritional requirements, he needs to take a high protein diet which will help increase his muscle mass.
Include protein-rich foods like eggs, low fat dairy products, nuts, lean meat, etc, in every meal.
Add lots of vegetables, fruits and salads in his diet to include antioxidants and fibre which will improve his gut health.
His immunity will improve with a good nutritional balance in his diet and energy-dense foods to sustain his activities.
He must drink enough water to remain well-hydrated, sleep for at least eight hours daily and have a happy social environment.