How I lost 45 pounds: Which products did I buy?

After writing a blog on my journey explaining how I lost more than 20 kilos (45 pounds), it was only natural of most readers to be curious about which products I consume(d) to make it possible. While a very highly nutritious diet (and not any crash, low cal or high protein diet etc) combined with frequent exercise and practicing healthy habits (walking in nature, sleeping right, avoiding bad foods to name a few) would be the best combination, modern day diet is very inflammatory (read aggressive) in nature. Hence, to counter such as aggravating diet, we need powerful foods (hence I like the term ‘superfoods’, though not in the sense of marketing).

As they say, desperate times call for desperate measures. As desperate this sentence sounds, you know its true meaning if your health is in a bad shape and you can sense something bad about to happen. You want to avoid it. So which foods will be helpful? Well following is a list of foods which will help you in weight loss but also in building an optimum health so you fall sick less often, get stronger, prolong your life, improve the quality of life and also lose weight in the process. This is also what I did and have mentioned at the end what stages of weight loss would be the best time to buy these products.

Vegetables

Most vegetables are highly recommended for anyone wanting to lose weight and get healthy. I would advise to stay clear of potato and corn (all cousins of corn) and consume tomatoes, onions, bell peppers in limited quantities (because of lack of dense nutrition-they are are nutritious, but have some sugars in them). So apart from potato and corn, most vegetables are healthy but the following are the healthiest for anybody wanting to lose weight or get healthier: Kale (but also all leafy greens), Spinach (but also all cruciferous vegetables), Garlic, Lemons (about 3 everyday-We buy about 120 lemons a month for a family of two), Pumpkins (and all squashes), Gourds (bitter, snake and all gourds) and almost all regional/exotic vegetables. We need about 300 to 350 grams of vegetables everyday to maintain healthy potassium levels. In cases of obesity, insulin resistance and diabetes, these potassium levels are lower than those in healthy individuals and recommend about 500 grams of any of the above vegetables for anyone trying to lose weight. Consuming these amounts will also help cleanse liver. A detoxified liver processes toxins better and aids in fat burning or losing weight. In simplistic terms, this will be called as boosting your metabolism. Think of vegetables as natural supplements which are better alternatives to buying expensive lab products. Invest in spinach, kale and other healthy vegetables. These should be the first and most important supplements for anyone trying to lose weight.

Time of consumption: With all your meals.

Dosage: 300 grams at least, but 500 grams recommended. (with two lemons)

Meal prep Lunch 3
Kale smoothies for lunch and dinner. I also consume soups/salads in addition to this.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar helps in improving digestion, gut health, potassium and nutrient availability to cell, reversing insulin resistance and improving acid in stomach. This should be the first supplemental product for almost everybody (in addition to vegetables) trying to lose weight as almost everyone struggling with weight has the above mentioned issues.

Time of consumption: Empty stomach in the morning with half a glass of water. However, if you feel hungry and sugar deprived all the time, have this with all your meals.

Dosage: 1 tablespoon with half a glass of water.

ACV ready
Apple Cider Vinegar with some other products I consume. Recommend to begin with only apple cider vinegar.

Tulsi leaves

Hormone balance is what goes wrong in weight gain. To lose weight, hormones restoration is required. Tulsi does that by balancing cortisol levels, digestive hormones, and providing vitamin K which has healing effects on damage caused due to sugar. While recommended for diabetics, it should also be consumed by anyone suffering from weight gain or obesity or insulin resistance of any levels.

Time of consumption: In the morning empty stomach 15 minutes of consuming apple cider vinegar.

Dosage: A handful of leaves. About 15 grams.

Ashwagandha root powder (Withania somnifera)

This requires a separate blog as it would take hours to describe ALL the benefits of ashwagandha but I will list few here: It is an adaptogen which restores the equilibrium in body, helps in adrenal fatigue and adrenal stress, helps control insulin resistance, regulate sugar levels and boosts immunity. It also aids in brain cells regeneration, post workout recovery, and thyroid regulation. It is also known to prolong life. (1) Anyone suffering from these issues should take ashwagandha root powder.

Time of consumption: Best at morning and evening at tea times.

Dosage: About 5 to 10 grams boiled in water and consumed as tea.

ashwagandha
Currently I am consuming this and am satisfied with results

Licorice root powder (Mulethi)

Like ashwagandha, licorice is also an adaptogen. It is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Most people because of stress and modern diet have too much inflammation in their body. It also helps in acid refluxes, heartburns, adrenal fatigue, boosting immunity and in relieving pain. (2)

Time for consumption: In the morning with ashwagandha.

Dosage: 2 to 3 grams everyday. You can make a licorice/ashwagandha tea in the morning to get the benefits of both herbs.

Wheatgrass powder

Wheatgrass powder juice is effectively a healing agent which also has many vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Because of high levels of chlorophyll, it basically stops and reversing aging by destroying free radicals in body. It also provides a lubrication to your gut and helps with the growth of healthy bacteria. As mentioned in my blog on kefir which you can check out here, poor gut health is one of the main reasons for most diseases today. By doing these, it also boosts metabolism, reduces inflammation and prevents tissue damage. Wheatgrass juice also helps in restoring pH balance, and preventing liver damage. Reversing that will be a huge boost to your health regime in addition to consuming high amounts of leafy greens. (3) The benefits of wheatgrass go beyond weight loss and would require a separate blog and hours of discussion but for anybody trying to lose weight, this will really speed up the process by building health.

Time for consumption: In the morning on empty stomach or two hours after lunch.

Dosage: 10 to 15 grams with half a lemon (and some stevia for taste if required) in a glass of water (cold water masks grass like taste better).

Wheatgrass juice
Wheatgrass juice with lemon and stevia

Barleygrass powder

Like wheatgrass powder, barley grasspowder is also rich in vitamins A, B, C, E and K and reduces oxidative stress in the body. By reducing inflammation and providing a protective lining in your gut, it helps with digestive health, gut health and increases healthy flora in the gut. Because of protective and immune building nature of both wheatgrass and barleygrass, they are recommended for preventing and arguably, curing cancer. (4) A combination of wheatgrass and barleygrass will also be supplemental in providing complete protein profile and users switch between the two in their regime to reap the benefits of both these superfoods. A complete amino acid profile from organic, natural (and hence, high quality) sources will ensure faster recovery post workouts and better muscle formation. Hence it will help reduce weight by contributing massively to health in many ways.

Time of consumption: In the morning empty stomach or two hours after meals.

Dosage: 10 to 15 grams in cold water with half a lemon and some stevia (Same as wheatgrass)

barleygrass juice
Barleygrass juice with lemon and stevia

Spirulina

A kind of bacteria (cyanobacterium) that is also referred as blue-green algae, spirulina is an ancient Aztec product making a comeback because per gram, it is the most nutritious food on the planet in modern day. 7 grams of spirulina has following nutrition:

  • 4 gram of protein (beating eggs, chicken and other conventionally thought high sources of protein)
  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamine): 11% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): 15% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin): 4% of the RDA.
  • Copper: 21% of the RDA.
  • Iron: 11% of the RDA.
  • Being only 20 calories with 1.7 grams of digestible carbohydrates, spirulina also contains decent amounts of magnesium, potassium and manganese, and small amounts of almost every other trace nutrient our body requires. It also contains omega 6 fats and omega 3 fats in the ratio of 1.5:1.
  • Because of the nature of origin, the quality of protein in spirulina is far better than conventional protein sources like eggs and chicken. In addition to being highly nutritious food, spirulina is also known to reduce inflammation, control blood sugar levels, improve endurance and post workout recovery, prevent free radical formation, and lower LDL, all of which are in imbalance during obesity and weight gain. (5) Hence it is a superfood which helps the weight loss faster.

Time of consumption: With lunch or dinner, once a day.

Dosage: About 10 grams in a glass of cold water or 2 to 3 tablets a day. Powder has a very protein like taste which might not suit all and hence tablets are recommended to begin with.

Spirulina
Spirulina in water

Cinnamon

In addition to having some nutrition in the form of minerals, cinnamon is mainly known for its anti-oxidant properties. It is top ranked among antioxidant herbs and has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-cancer properties to name a few. (6)

Time of consumption: In meals as a spice or in the morning with apple cider vinegar.

Dosage: About 5 to 10 grams a day would be very beneficial.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a replacement to many medicines and plays an equally important role in reversing obesity. It has very potent anti inflammatory properties, and is the best spice to reduce inflammation. It also plays an important role in reversing insulin resistance and diabetes. Via reducing oxidation, it helps in detoxification of organs and handling LDL levels hence impacting lipid profile and eventually cardiovascular health. A combination of turmeric and cinnamon is great for all the benefits and boosting metabolism, eventually leading to losing weight and building health. (7)

Time of consumption: In meals as a spice or in the morning with apple cider vinegar.

Dosage: About 5 to 10 grams a day would be very beneficial.

Lemongrass oil

Though not commonly used in diets, lemongrass oil is a potent anti inflammatory, anti oxidant and has massive roles to play in treating obesity, inflammation, insulin resistance and imbalanced hormone levels. It also helps in curing pains and cramps and is an excellent supplement for recovering from workouts. It also builds intestinal health and supports in digestion and building immunity. (8)

Time for consumption: In wheatgrass juice/apple cider vinegar with water once a day.

Dosage: One or two drops.

When to buy which supplement?

  1. Begin with avoiding sugar altogether and avoiding grains as much as you can. Also avoid refined carbohydrates and processed foods altogether.
  2. Add about 300 grams of vegetables to your diet. Green leafy, cruciferous, nutrient dense vegetables. Always consume two to three lemons with these vegetables (except in cases of joint pains, high inflammation, lemon allergies and arthritis).
  3. Begin with apple cider vinegar. This can be done from day 1.
  4. Add a little bit of turmeric and cinnamon to your apple cider vinegar drink. This will boost the metabolism and provide numerous benefits from the beginning. This can be done from day 1. Add small quantities of these two spices and gradually increase them to about 1 gram each. You can also add half a lemon to this drink to make it even more potent!
  5. You can also include tulsi leaves from day 1.
  6. After a month or two, hormone levels and vitamins and minerals levels will be better.
  7. At this point, you can add ashwagandha and licorice to your regime. You can also add ashwagandha and licorice a bit sooner. You will know when the body runs without sugar and that is a good time to begin these adaptogens in your diet.
  8. Now the gut health is much improved due to lack of sugar (which is the food for bad bacteria-yeast!) and ample supply of healthy fibers from vegetables. To make things better, you can include either wheatgrass powder, or barleygrass powder, or both in your daily regime. Make sure you begin with smaller quantities then gradually increase them to about 10 or 15 grams a day. These should NOT substitute green leafy vegetables.
  9. If you are protein deficient or have less energy (especially if you workout during weight loss), you can add spirulina to your diet. However, to make things better, do this after eating right and working out for atleast three to four months when the body is ready to digest and absorb these nutrient rich food.

Disclaimer: While most of these foods are suited for most people, you should not consume any food if you’re allergic to it or causes bloating/indigestion. Please consult a specialist whenever in doubt regarding food and taking new foods for a particular health condition.

References:

  1. https://draxe.com/ashwagandha-proven-to-heal-thyroid-and-adrenals/
  2. https://draxe.com/licorice-root/
  3. https://draxe.com/discover-amazing-wheat-grass/
  4. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/cereal/barley-grass.html
  5. http://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-benefits-of-spirulina#section2
  6. https://draxe.com/health-benefits-cinnamon/
  7. https://draxe.com/turmeric-benefits/
  8. https://draxe.com/lemongrass-essential-oil/

6 Comments

  1. Hina

    Great blog Udit, for those on the journey its a great support.
    I had a question. I ordered the Ashwagandha roots from RR agro. Now question is how to consume it without grinding it. Iv taken 200ml of water + 15gm ashwagandha root + 5gm cinnamon. Boiled this till the water reduced to 20ml and this i drank in one dose after lunch. Would this be ok? If so should i repeat this in the evening?

    Like

    1. critiquewhatibuy

      Hi Hina, thank you for your question. If you do not want to grind it, take a piece and boil for about 20 to 25 minutes. Grinding exposes the powder and the active compounds are released faster. So using a part of the root which is not ground will take a bit longer. You can repeat this in the evening as well for achieving better equilibrium of hormones and in body. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Abhishek

    Hey Udit,
    This is really a great and informative post and so is the one with your weight loss journey. I have a couple of questions that did not seem clear from the post:
    1. What is the reason of taking about 3 lemons per day? Is it the Vitamin C?
    2. When you say keep away from all grains, do you mean grains like wheat/rice/jowar/bajra or also dals and pulses? Does this also include legumes and beans?
    Thanks,
    Abhishek

    Like

    1. pristinehealth

      Hi Abhishek thank you and thanks for your questions. 1. Lemons keep us safe from kidney stones which we can get from doing too many cruciferous vegetables. 2. I do legumes, beans and dals occasionally but not the grains like bajra, jowar and rice. If you’re a vegetarian, there are many, many recipes that you can follow. I’m coming up with a recipe book myself which will help such people.

      Like

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