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Rujuta Diwekar’s Lose your weight, Don’t lose your mind!

During one of my monthly book buying binges at Crossword around 4 months ago, I came across this book called “Don’t lose your mind, LOSE YOUR WEIGHT” by author Rujuta Diwekar who is well known for being Dietician & Nutritionist for “the-size-zero­-Kareena-Kapoor”. Due to some books remaining unread, it took a little while for this book’s turn to come for a read. Around 2 months back, I took it for reading. I was totally blown over by the simplicity & easy manner in which this book is written. The best part is that the book does not bore you (diet is a boring subject & holding reader’s attention consistently is tough task, I feel) & keeps flowing like an interesting storybook.

First chapter talks about the various diet fads, the myths about so-called weight-loss programs and fattening foods. Author rather makes a bold statement that “There is really nothing like ‘safe food’ or ‘fattening food’. Everything that you eat judiciously, at the right time and in the right quantity is good for you”. She then gets you to the basics of How to eat. Now, that’s something we don’t think we need to learn. But then the simple rules that Rujuta tells you change your perspective towards eating. (How do you know you are eating fast… While you are chewing food in mouth, if you keep food ready in your hands or on your spoon means you are eating fast & then that will result in overeating.) Here she rightly says that when it comes to food, think nutrients & not calories.

She then takes you to rethinking about what to eat. Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, Vitamins, Minerals, supplements & water…… She explains all these important aspects of food in language that’s not technical at all. This helps reader understand them better and use the information in his/her day-to-day food intake. (This is one big important feature of this book, as it’s not technical at all, you can take the advice there & then and start implementing it immediately). Here too she helps you understand things like whether you are drinking enough water or not…If your urine is always crystal clear (& not light yellow, dark yellow or reddish), you are drinking right quantity of water. Simple tests & rules like that help you start using the book’s advice right away.

Then she unveils the soul of her diet regime. The four principles of eating right….

Principle #1: "Eat some real food within 10-15 minutes of waking up."

Not tea or coffee but some real food…When we sleep, our blood sugar levels are dropped & we must bring them up to optimum levels. A real food (I have started eating an apple) leads to slow & steady rise of blood sugar levels. Tea & coffee actually work against this requirement as they contain caffeine (or cigarette) which increases the blood pressure, heart rate & breathing rate and make body feel “kicked”. In reality, body feels stressed but we take this as feeling awake. Stress is the biggest enemy of an efficient digestive system, the fat burning process of the body and hence, keeping body stress-free help you burn the fats at better rate. She also talks about the right potty style, the Indian Pot way. (In fact, this book has many boxes of relevant information which are spread within the chapters and they help you understand a particular point, concept or food item in detail. Some of them are Honey Lime Water / How to drink alcohol if you must / Coffee post dinner / What about sex post dinner / Tea & antioxidants / Italians & Olive Oil to name a few)

Don’t lose your mind, Lose your weight!

Principle # 2 - "Eat every 2 hours."

She says that you can follow this principle 2 only if you follow principle 1 because eating first thing in the morning lays down the foundation for day long hunger. This principle is derived from psychological perspective of body. Our body, when we eat at longer intervals (no breakfast, lunch at 2.00 pm & dinner at 10.30 pm), feels that it’s a starvation mode & hence, stores food (in form of fat) as it doesn’t know when the next lot of food will come its way. Also, when we eat at prolonged gaps, we tend to overeat. Eating every two hours makes body feel cared & reassured. It doesn’t feel like storing fat as it’s getting its food intake regularly. Also, when we eat at short intervals, we tend to eat less which means calorie intake is small. This simple mantra cuts down your fat stores and reduces your dependence on stimulants like tea, coffee & cigarettes.

Principle #3: "Eat more when you are active & less when you are less active"

Again the author tells you that one cannot follow the principle no. 3 unless you follow principle no. 2. Only when you actually eat all the time can you actually decrease meal size when less active and increase when more active. High activity could be both physical and mental. Activities like intense thinking, gymnasium, attending important meets are the ones where you are actively involved & are demanding a lot of energy from you. Low activity is when you are passive & do not use much of mental energies too. Activities like watching movie or TV, small chat over phone, being driven in car are considered as low activities. Eating more food when you are more active will make your body an efficient calorie burner which will increase the metabolic rate of your body. This will help you stay energetic all day long & will help you lose your fats more effectively.

Principle #4: "Finish your last meal of the day at least 2 hours prior to sleeping."

Digesting food is a calorie burner and a type of work for the body. The digestive system gets relaxed post sunset & if you overload your stomach with food in the night, most of it will get wasted or will get converted in fat. When we sleep, it’s time for body to repair the wear & tear and rejuvenate. If the stomach is full of food then, the body either starts working for digestion & ignores the rejuvenation OR ignores the digestion and works of repairing wear & tear. Both these things harm body. Keeping 2 hours gap between last meal & sleeping will help most of your food get digested and that leads to making you feel hungry in the morning. The principle 4 again ties down to principle 1.

Real Life Examples: In last two chapters, author has provided various real life examples on actual diet habits of people & analysed what’s wrong with them. Then she goes ahead & shows with minimal changes in lifestyle, how these people can shift to healthy eating habits and experience better results. The idea is to make one aware about one’s eating habits and then bring in a conscious change for better. This is typically like time & motion studies that manufacturing or process oriented industries adopt where log of activities is observed for a week or two weeks and then modifications are suggested.

This book is MUST for any adult who wants to remain fit & healthy and does not want to get cheated by the extreme diet fads & weight loss programs. When you want to cut down on your fat, the food (at least some food) is looked upon as poison. But Rujuta Diwekar brings back the old wisdom of “Anna He Purna Brahma” (The food is God). Go guys & gals, buy this book, read & implement to make you feel happy & healthy from within.

P.S.: Feel, Crossword should also keep some copies of this book in philosophy section where I frequent more. Like I believe that Godfather is not a Fiction but a Management book, I think that this book is about the eating as ‘way of life’ & hence should find a space in philosophy section too. At least, I would have come across this book earlier & reaped the benefits long back Wink

Recently, we came across news in an online Publication, timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Domestic workers may soon get health cover

NEW DELHI: The labour ministry has moved a Cabinet proposal to extend the health insurance scheme for BPL families — Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana — to domestic workers. It means government will register workers, mostly maids working in domestic households, to give them insurance benefit.

The task force has recommended that RSBY, a health insurance scheme offering upto Rs 30,000 for BPL families, be extended to domestic helps. If the move bears fruit, it will mean a protective umbrella for the largely tribal and backward population from Orissa, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh.

To read full news, click here

Experts from Medimanage.com give their opinion:

Sudhir Sarnobat:

Sudhir Sarnobat from Medimanage.com

This is very good initiative & if implemented in correct manner, can help many BPL domestic workers not going under burden of loans & borrowings due to hospitalisation of the bread-earners of the family.

The health insurance cover is currently very small & hence, Government should also include critical illnesses cover, absence of which generally drains the meagre savings of the family & sometimes pushes the family into trap of loan sharks.

The premium payment of 25% by the insured will bring in the awareness of the health insurance plan to these members & utilisation levels would be good.

The premium payable would be roughly around Rs. 90 to 150 per person per year.

This will bring large population under Health Insurance coverage & current statistics of penetration of insurance will change drastically.


Recently, we came across news in an online Publication, business-standard.com

Buy Health Insurance to improve your Health

You need not shell out the big bucks to be pampered. Buy a health insurance and enjoy luxury treatment at a spa, join a gymnasium or a yoga centre and get the necessary incentives that suit your budget.

Insurers, including ICICI Lombard General Insurance Co Ltd and Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, are tying up with yoga centers, gyms and spas to provide policy holders an opportunity to improve their health — and looking for avenues to sell more heath insurance. Some of the other insurers are also exploring collaborations with these centers.

“We can pass on the benefit of these initiatives if policyholders start taking preventive measures,” said Datta. “Globally, the benefits are transferred to policyholders in terms of discount in premium. It may happen in another two years in India also.”

To read the full news, click here

Experts from Medimanage.com give their opinion:

KS Sankar:

K S Sankar from Medimanage.com

I would however suggest that the insurance companies, rather than carrying out these initiatives themselves, will stand to benefit by outsourcing these activities to entities enabled to carry this out better. Reasons:

1)      Core competencies: Insurance companies’ core competencies lie in underwriting, not preventive health management.

2)      Customer perspectives: We live in a world where, for all that it is a good to do thing, the mere fact that it is rolled out by the insurance companies who would also tomorrow determine admissibility of my claims, makes me suspect motives. Is it that the insurance company is seeking to establish I am non-compliant with something, using which they could say ‘no’ to my claim.

3)      Focus: Except for Apollo Munich, the other insurance companies are not even dedicated health insurance companies. This activity would obviously not be an activity of prime focus for them.

4)      A lone tree does not make the woods: Just a visit to a spa or participation in gym exercises or yoga is only a part of the more wholesome approach – diet, lifestyle modification, etc. need to be integrated.

5)      Non-specific: Each individual needs a customized holistic prescription of the above combinations. To dish out memberships as panacea for all will not be the most effective way to ensure good health.

6)      Sustained involvement of the beneficiary: Most of the endeavors mentioned here seem merely to take the horse to water. Mere providing a spa/gym/yoga centre membership does not ensure the beneficiary will work through the fitness regimen. The woe of many a gym, we know, is the very high drop out percentage.

To ensure success in this, the following are essential:

a)      Thorough knowledge of pro-active health care and health insurance.

b)      Working dedicatedly in this sphere so that focus is not diffused.

c)       Ability to customize lifestyle modifications that are right fit for each individual.

d)      Interactive IT driven robust processes that will gently but effectively monitor and help the beneficiary through the fitness regimen. 

It would make better sense for these insurance companies to outsource these activities to an entity that has all the above capabilities. This entity could, on one hand, guide and monitor the beneficiary through the regimen and on the other, provide compliance reports to these insurance companies – with complete knowledge of the beneficiary, of course.

Sudhir Sarnobat:

Sudhir Sarnobat from Medimanage.com

Though the moves by the insurers would be called visionary & pragmatic, if these are looked at as remedies for immediate claims reduction, it would not happen so.

The real reasons for current higher claims ratio are:

  • Faulty pricing – The current premium rating emanates for old claims data which is hiked by certain percentages over a period of time. The corporate health insurance, which contributes to 50% total health insurance premium & around 70% of losses, is still priced differently when there are other portfolios like Fire & marine that are bundled together. The pricing across all customer segments should be based on stand-alone basis only.  
  • Unrestricted covers – This pertains more to the corporate segment where the maternity cover or pre-existing cover is offered at nominal premium which brings in huge losses. Also the optional parental cover is also another drainer which brings in anti-selection for the insurer.
  • Uneven spread – Over a period of time, the average age of the insured members is on rise which shows that either more old people are getting the insurance cover (which would bring in claims in immediate future) or not enough young people (below the average age) are buying the health insurance.
  • Low penetration – The low penetration remains a big concern as more than 90% population (among those who can afford insurance) if still uninsured. More than 85% of the payouts at the hospitals remain out of pocket.  

The tie-ups with Gyms are flimsy & one need to create more penetrating program if real change is expected out of such efforts. The gyms have 90% drop outs & that’s how they make their money & remain viable. The diagnostics tie-ups may bring in other diseases which may warrant hospitalisations at the behest of the doctors (read blog by Dr. Aniruddha Malpani here)

air pollution leads to a rise in blood pressure

A new study has claimed that people living in areas with high levels of air pollution have higher blood pressure!

The study conducted at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany, found that long term exposure to high levels of air pollution not only increases the blood pressure of an individual and puts him at a risk of heart attack and stroke, but also acts as a trigger for many other underlying processes that lead to chronic cardio vascular diseases such as atherosclerosis –hardening of arteries.

The research lead by Dr. Barbara Hoffman was conducted for a period of over 3 years, analyzed the long term effects of exposure to pollution and found that high levels of air pollution lead to a rise in one’s blood pressure, irrespective of whether the subject smoked or his or her gender, age, weight.

To know more, click here…


Shortcuts. We use plenty of them on a daily basis; Shortcuts on our computers keyboards, shortcuts to reach our destinations early, shortcuts in our meals by opting for fast foods and so on... but are all the short cuts that we take healthy?

The answer is No! As not all shortcuts that we take are healthy, some shortcuts such as eating food past its expiry date to avoid going out and buying it, popping your mother’s sleeping pills to avoid going to the doctor and getting yourself a new prescription etc. may spell disaster for you health wise!

A fact discovered by a 39 year old Delhi Businessman who opted for wearing his contact lenses way past their expiry date to avoid buying new ones. The result was persistent redness and itchiness in his eyes, in fact he was lucky to have not permanently damaged his eye-sight as Rina Sethi, director, Arunodaya Desert Eye Hospital, Gurgaon, states that “Even when you clean and disinfect lenses and lens cases, they become coated with germs and protein over time. If you are lucky, you may develop just reddened, irritated eyes or a bacterial infection. But sometimes extended use may even lead to development of corneal defects like ulcers due to low oxygen permeability to the cornea…”

To know about more such detrimental health short cuts that might be taking, click here…


The Great Indian Guide for Baby Care - FAQsWe at Medimanage.com are pleased to inform you of the stupendous success achieved by the recently launched e-book on baby care titled ‘The Great Indian Guide for Baby Care’- a Medimanage.com initiative. This book can be personalized, downloaded or gifted to your near and dear ones for free from here!


1200+ downloads in a day - Thank you !


Following is a list of general FAQs regarding the download of the e-book, we hope these will answer all your queries.

Common Queries on the Download:

1. Why is a Login Access required to download the Book?

There are various instances where download requests could fail, due to a time-out or a pop-up blocker etc. The login helps us in saving your customized book under your login (explained in detail below)

2. I got "time out" error/Blank Page/Pop-up Blocker while trying to download the Book. How do I retrieve the Book?

In case you have got a Time Out/Blank Page/Pop-up Blocker after you clicked on Download e-Book, as mentioned above, we have saved the book under your login. Here's how you retrieve the book through your login.

Take the following steps:

- Log on to http://www.medimanage.com

- Click on the Login button on the top right

- Login with your username and password.

If you see the Member Central Dashboard:

a.  In the Left Panel, under Download Central – there is a link for Download Baby Care e-Book.
b.  This will take you the My Page
c.  Click the My Activities or My Purchases Tab.
d.  Click on the Link “The Great Indian Guide for Baby Care”. The book should start downloading.

If this does not work,

In case Internet Explorer : Right Click and select “Save Target As”.

In case of Mozilla : Right Click and select “Save Link As”.

In case you see My Page:
a.    Click the My Activities or My Purchases Tab.
b.    Click on the Link “The Great Indian Guide for Baby Care”.

If this does not work:

In case Internet Explorer  : Right Click and select “Save Target As”.

In case of Mozilla : Right Click and select “Save Link As”. 

3.  I saw the Insurance Store Page several times, after I provided my login information.
Sincere Apologies. You experienced a technical bug here. We have rectified the same. Request you to try downloading the book again we assure you that you will not find this error. Click here to download the book again.

4. I got a Server Error while downloading the Baby Care e-Book. 

Sincere Apologies. You experienced a technical bug here. We have rectified the same. Request you to try downloading the book again. We assure you that you will not find this error. Click here to download the book again.

5. Can you send the e-Book as an attachment.
It would be physically difficult for us to email each personalized book to your respective email addresses. As mentioned above, in case your download has failed, in most cases, the e-Book would have been saved under your Login. In case your Access Rights don't allow you to download the e-Book, request you to download the e-Book from an alternative computer (your personal computer, cyber-cafe's etc.) Lastly, we would request you to download the e-Book once again. We have tried our best to prevent any technical bug possible.

NOTE: You need to have Adobe Reader installed on your computer to be able to download/view your e-Book.

Thanks for the interest shown in the e-Book. Do send in your feedback/suggestions/inputs to the magazine@medimanage.com.

lisa ray cancer

The dreaded disease can no longer just be shushed into silence. It is increasing been written and talked about, take Lisa Ray for example who suffered from Cancer of white blood cells who actively blogged and tweeted about it, even posting bald pictures of herself !

It is important that we become more about this disease because number of people suffering from cancer is predicted to reach epic proportions. Currently there are 30 lakh people suffering from cancer today, by 2020, WHO predicts that this number is going to triple and then grow at the rate of 20% each year, double that of our GDP, if you notice.

Here is why you must take note of cancer,

  • Pollution, sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy diet and irregular habits and stress increase the risk.
  • Early detection can lead to recovery (Lisa ray had a  blood cell transplant is much better today)
  • It affects people of all age. Incidents in young Indians are increasing.
  • Cancer treatment is expensive and can severly affect the finances of your family

To read more about the India’s Cancer epidemic, read this article in TOI Crest, http://bit.ly/9zTQq3

this world hypertension day know all that there is to know about hypertension or High BP

With the entire world observing 'World Hypertension Day' today, we are reminded that Hypertension or High BP still lives up to its 'Silent Killer' fame with almost 24-30% of India's urban population in its clasp.

What's more shocking is that, most of the individuals are clueless about their hypertensive state until it gets discovered in a routine check-up! Plus with the disease justifying its silent killer name by not showing any symptoms till it reaches an advanced state wherein it affects a person’s vital organs such as heart, kidney, liver, eyes and memory, which makes a BP check up necessary.

*A normal BP reading should read 120/80 with 120 being the systolic and 80 being the diastolic reading, one should always strive to keep their Blood Pressure close to the 120/80 margin or else they run the risk of a having a heart attack, stroke, vision loss and cognitive impairment*

To Know more about Hypertension, click here.

To get a different perspective on the possible causes of Hypertension, click here…

Fixed combination drugs provide the same results as basic drugs do, yet cost more! How would you feel if you went shopping for socks and the salesman sold you not only socks but shoes and shirt with it? Cheated, disappointed and angry right! Imagine the same scenario happening when it comes to your basic medicines.

What’s happening is that, the doctor’s these days are prescribing various fixed combination drugs (FDC) which cost considerably more than a basic drug, which would have had provided the same treatment effect to the patient! For e.g. Sumoflam, a combination drug consisting of paracetamol, nimesulide and serratiopeptidase which costs Rs 53 per 10 tablets is being prescribed for fever and Pain, when a simple paracetamol costing Rs 10 per 10 tablets, would have sufficed and given the same results as Sumoflam.

 With health care experts pointing out that most combinations have no medical logic whatsoever, it clearly seems like an attempt by the drug makers to exhort money from patients.What’s even more shocking about this whole nefarious affair is that certain FDCs also have side effects on vital organs, making it not only a costly but an unhealthy drug choice. This issue has bought to fore the desperate need for an unbiased flow of information to be provided to the doctors (private practitioners) about drugs, as their only source of information right now are the drug making companies themselves!

To know more, click here…

Nurses from Pooja Nursing Home with their gifts, courtesy Medimanage.com on the eve of International Nurses Day

Before we begin, we would like to ask a simple question to everyone “Do you remember the name of the nurse who helped deliver you as a baby?”

While we know that the question seems absurd, as one cannot be expected to remember a single random name after a gap of 10-20 years! But doesn’t it go to show how ignorant we are towards our nurses. While we may think that role of a nurse is not that important or vital, ask any doctor who is the most important person to him professionally and the answer will always be ‘Nurse’ or ‘Sister’ as they are sometimes known.

With nurses silently serving the society since time immemorial without due recognition, we at Medimanage.com decided to Thank the Thankless this International Nurses Day. The Medimanage Team visited Pooja Nursing Home, Mumbai on the occasion and spent time with the nurses while thanking them for their services. Speaking to them we realized the amazing dedication and passion these women exhibit towards their work, making the thankless scenario seem even more criminal, if we must say!

A member of the Medimanage Team presents a nurse from Pooja Nursing home with a gift on the eve of International Nurses Day

A member of the Medimanage Team presents a nurse from Pooja Nursing home with a gift on the eve of International Nurses Day



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