CHENNAI : Weddings are an event of love, laughter, family, and most importantly — food. We wait for weddings just to devour the food served there with our friends and family. Food is a significant element of weddings and the culinary experience plays a crucial role in creating memorable celebrations. Nutrition during weddings is an important aspect to consider, as weddings often involve long hours, energy-demanding activities, and celebrations that may disrupt regular eating patterns. Here are some considerations for maintaining good nutrition during weddings:
Don’t skip the salad: This might not be the first thing you want to reach out to among the whole buffet spread there. However, like with productivity, get the hardest tasks done first. Go for the salad spread first (kosambari, sundal, poriyal). This will add some fibre to your diet which will make digestion easier while also providing you with some satiety. Opt for non-cream-based, lite, or fat-free salad dressing or, just go with a small amount of olive oil and vinegar.
Starters: Any dish with the words stuffed, double, triple, crispy, etc, are the ones that you may want to refrain from due to the high amount of fat and salt. There is no harm in trying them, but definitely control portion size.
Soups: Soups are great for you to feel satiated and sometimes a cup of soup and some grilled protein is all you need. So, don’t miss the soup.
Protein: Include any grilled or tandoor-ed protein as a part of your meal. This could be paneer tikka, grilled chicken/fish, chaap. Choosing stewed, sautéed, or grilled food over fried and baked food will be easier on the gut. Dal and egg curries work great for protein intake.
Fruits: Fruit juices can contain a lot of sugar, hence opt for whole fruits to get the fiber in and to avoid the extra sugar.
Points to remember
Hydration: It’s common to forget to hydrate during weddings. Dehydration can lead to fatigue and dizziness. Remember to drink water regularly throughout the day.
Meal before meal: To prevent going overboard at the wedding, have a small snack before leaving to avoid overeating.
Mindful eating: Mindful eating is an approach to food consumption that involves paying full attention to the experience of eating, without judgment. It encourages awareness of the tastes, smells, textures, and feelings associated with eating, as well as an understanding of one’s hunger and fullness cues. Practicing mindful eating can have various benefits for both physical and mental well-being.
Include snacks: Have healthy snacks on hand to prevent excessive hunger between meals. Nuts, yoghurt, fresh fruits, and corn are good options.
Alcohol: If alcohol is part of the celebration, consume it in moderation. Avoid sugary and unhealthy mixers and choose nuts or grilled protein as sides. Alcohol can contribute to dehydration, and excessive intake can affect your energy levels and overall well-being.
Aim for proper meal timings: Try to maintain a regular eating schedule. Skipping meals or going too long without eating can lead to overeating later in the day.
Move more: Weddings include a lot of movement with all the dancing and walking/ running to complete errands. Indulging in more movement can help boost your energy levels and promote overall well-being.
Remember that weddings are special occasions, and it’s okay to enjoy the festivities and indulge in some treats. The key is to strike a balance and prioritise overall health and well-being during the celebration.
(Sadhvika is a clinical nutritionist who attends to metabolic disorders. She also works towards sports nutrition.)