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Foods you should avoid on an empty stomach

Dr. HelloDox Care #
HelloDox Care

Do you grab the first edible thing you see in the morning and stuff your face with it? Well, many of us who are rushed for time tend to make these terrible breakfast mistakes but eating the wrong food on an empty stomach can wreak havoc on your system the entire day. From cramps, acidity, bloating and gas, it’s not a pretty picture. Just being a little careful about what you eat in the morning can help you feel better and be more productive all day. Here’s a list so that you can be more discerning in the future!

Coffee: Can’t function without coffee on an empty stomach? Well, you might just have to break this habit because it increases acidity and gives you a case of heartburn and indigestion. Coffee is known to reduce the secretion bile and gastric juices, making it difficult for you to digest the other food that you eat. It also ups the production of hydrochloric acid in the digestive system which may give you a nasty case of gastritis.

Spicy food: Love your parantha with a generous dollop of mango pickle first thing? Well, all that spice and heat in the pickle is going to make you writhe in pain because spices and chillies on an empty stomach irritates your stomach lining and causes indigestion and acidity.

Bananas: you are probably eating a banana every morning and feeling very virtuous about it with reason, because it is a food power-packed with nutrition. However, on an empty stomach it can affect your heart, no less. Bananas are rich in magnesium and potassium and eating them on an empty tummy can overload your bloodstream with these two nutrients and harm your heart.

Tomatoes: Some people eat tomatoes first thing in the morning as they are considered a source of many essential nutrients. However, the high amounts of tannic acid will give you acidity that will ultimately lead to gastric ulcers. Even, cucumbers are hard to digest on an empty stomach so as a thumb rule, so avoid raw veggies and rustle up a salad later in the day.

Citrus fruits: This is something that your mom must have told you and she was absolutely right. Citrus fruits increase acid production with very uncomfortable consequences if you haven’t had anything to eat. The glut of fibre and fructose in fruits also slows down digestions and messes up your system all day.

Processed Sugar: Love drinking a large glass of sugary fruit juice in the morning? Well, maybe you will change your mind when you know that excess sugar on an empty stomach can harm your liver and pancreas over the long run. It’s as bad as drinking a bottle of wine first thing in the morning. All that sugar can also give you gas and make you feel bloated. And sugar in processed foods like pastry and doughnuts is doubly bad because some kinds of yeats used in these inflame your stomach lining and cause flatulence.


Benefits of Red Wine for Health, Skin and Weight Loss

Dr. HelloDox Care #
HelloDox Care

The health benefits of red wine have been a matter of debate for some time now. There are many who believe that having one glass of red wine daily can be a valuable addition to our diet, while others think that its advantages are overrated. Yet, there is no denying the studies that have reportedly shown that moderate red wine consumption seems to lower the risk of several diseases, including heart disease. The keyword: moderate. Here, we look at some benefits of red wine for health, skin, weight loss and more.

Is Red Wine Good for Skin?
It is common knowledge that drinking a glass of red wine a day can ward off the blues, make you feel good, and even boost heart health and cell regeneration! But did you know, red wine can be excellent for the skin as well? Topical application of this ingredient has a multitude of skincare benefits. A look and why and how to include this in your beauty regimen.

Combats skin damage: Red wine uses the skin of grapes, which contains a potent ingredient called resveratrol, an antioxidant. Resveratrol is a key anti-ageing ingredient, which combats the damage done by free radicals, boosts cell function, and helps collagen production happen naturally. It keeps skincare free of wrinkles, dark spots and fine lines, while also creating a protective barrier from pollution and the harmful UV rays of the sun.

Helps clean and clear skin: Red wine also has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, making it ideal for skin that is prone to acne and infections, skin that has been out in the sun too long, skin that has open pores. It slows down the growth of harmful skin bacteria and is the best kind of toner there is – using one teaspoon red wine mixed with one teaspoon water after cleansing, can really give your skin a texture boost.

Ensures even-toned skin: Red wine can also be good for the skin on the body. For smoother skin, with more elasticity and firmness, dip a sponge or loofah in red wine that has been diluted slightly, and use as an exfoliating scrub once a week. This will ensure even-toned skin on the arms and legs, reduce blackening on the knees and elbows and create smoother skin overall.

Works as a face scrub: You can use red wine on the face by itself as a toner/cleanser, or in combination with other ingredients for a face pack or a face scrub. You can combine it with aloe vera gel, Multani mitti, ground cinnamon or honey for a face pack, with rose water or lemon tea for a cleanser, or with oatmeal or sugar for a scrub.

Tip: Red wine is thought to be one of the best anti-aging drinks.

Red Wine Facials and How it Benefits The Skin
Across the country and the world, red wine facials are popular with cosmetologists and women cutting age groups. A red wine Across the country and the world, red wine facials are popular with cosmetologists and women cutting age groups. A red wine facial is a treatment that uses red wine – a potent anti-oxidant – as its main ingredient. With an anti-oxidant activity 50 times more effective than vitamin E and 20 times more than vitamin C, red wine visibly reduces the appearance of wrinkles and improves skin elasticity and moisture content. It protects against free radicals and increases intracellular levels of vitamin C and, which has an anti-wrinkle effect. It inhibits the destruction of collagen fibres, stimulates the activity of certain detoxifying enzymes and inhibits others that are responsible for premature ageing of cutaneous tissues. This can have a positive effect on the skin!

The effects of a red wine facial are visible from the first treatment itself but are to some extent dependant on the condition of your skin. The treatment is a set procedure that uses products as per the individual skin type and skin condition and needs an anti-ageing machine to achieve results. A single treatment can cost upwards of Rs. 2,000/- in India and is available at most leading hi-end spas and 5-star hotel spas across the country.

Tip: A wine facial works for some skin types. See if you fit the bill.

Red Wine for Weight Loss Benefits
You may have been told that if you want to lose weight, you must ditch booze, avoid high-calorie food and hit the gym. Well, the latter pieces of advice may work for all of us, but ditching booze to lose weight is not a good idea, say experts. According to researchers, drinking red wine in moderation can actually help you in your weight loss journey.

How does it work: As per researchers, drinking two glasses of red wine can help you in losing weight. The studies were conducted at Washington State University and Harvard Medical School and claimed that a polyphenol called 'resveratrol', which is present in red wine, helps in losing weight. Polyphenol converts white fat, which are larger cells that store energy and expand as we gain weight, into obesity-fighting beige fat and this fat is much easier to lose.

Another study was done at Harvard study on 20,000 women. It revealed that women who were drinking wine had a 70 per cent reduced risk of developing obesity. They also found that drinking wine initially slowed weight gain in women. However, these women self-reported their weight over time.

Tip: The key is moderation.

Other Benefits of Red Wine
Drinking red wine is good for our health, claim health experts. Do keep in mind though that a healthy lifestyle and wholesome diet can play an even bigger role in ensuring good health.

Reduce the risk of some heart disease: A few studies have also shown that drinking wine in small to moderate quantities may help in reducing risks for some kinds of heart disease.

Lowers risk of stroke: Red wine may also help in lowering the risk of strokes and early death. This is because when your red wine helps within a certain limit, it can help retain the 'good' HDL cholesterol in the blood.

Reduces the risk of some cancers: It also reduces the risk of certain types of cancer, including colon, basal cell, ovary and prostate cancers.

Reduces the risk of dementia: Health experts also say that drinking 1-3 glasses of wine per day is also linked with reduced risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

Reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes: It is also believed that moderate consumption of red wine could reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, especially in women.

Reduces the risk of depression: Another study that was done on middle-aged and elderly people revealed that those who drank 2-7 glasses of wine per week were less likely to be depressed.

Tip: Do talk to your doctor before consuming wine for its health benefits.


Benefits Of Carom Seeds(Ajwain)

Dr. HelloDox Care #
HelloDox Care

India is a land of spices, and also a land of home remedies, or dadima ke nuskhe. One such spice that any Indian kitchen is incomplete without, is ajwain, or carom seeds. If one goes back to the roots, these seeds are derived from the urugandha plant, and their origin lies in India.

Although on their own they have a bitter and pungent flavour, carom seeds are added to several vegetables and curries owing to their digestive properties. They possess antioxidant, antihypertensive, antimicrobial, hypolipidemic, and several other properties. The main component of ajwain oil is thymol, which treats gastrointestinal ailments. Carom seeds can remedy abdominal issues arising out of indigestion, especially stomach ache or a burning sensation. Carom seeds contain important fatty acids, fibre, and other antioxidants. These contribute to their benefits. While the polyunsaturated fats help lower cholesterol levels, the thymol in the seeds regulates blood pressure levels. The seeds also help fight inflammation. Take a look at the benefits.

Carom seeds provide relief from stomach ailments:
For relief from ailments like acidity and indigestion, carom seeds work like magic. It is one of the most crucial health benefits of these tiny, pungent seeds. They keep the stomach strong when they are had regularly, but when you are suffering from digestive problems, ensure you use carom seeds for relief. An upset stomach upsets your daily routine, so treat it well.

How to use: You can mix a teaspoon of cumin seeds (jeera) with a teaspoon of carom seeds and half a teaspoon of ginger powder and mix it with a glass of warm water and drink it. You will find instant relief. This helps with heartburns as well as gastric issues and releases gas from the body.

Tip: If you feel you have had a heavy meal, swallow half a teaspoon of raw carom seeds with regular water. This will help in the digestion of the meal.

Carom seeds help in treating cold and cough:
These tiny carom seeds have a host of uses, including opening up nasal blockages and relieving sinus stress. Use of the seeds also helps with discharging the mucus easily.

How to use: When suffering from a cold, make a paste of carom seeds and jaggery, by mixing equal quantities of both and heating it in the microwave or over a flame. You can also add a pinch of dried ginger powder to this paste, it will enhance the relief properties. Consume two teaspoons of the paste twice a day until you are better. The paste also helps with respiratory problems. If you have a cough, you should boil the carom seeds in water and drink the liquid as a hot tea for relief.

Make a small pack (potli) with carom seeds in a thin cloth or handkerchief, and heat this on an iron pan (tawa). Use this hot compress on the head for headache or on the chest and nose to relieve congestion.

Tip: You can also place this potlis under your pillow when you sleep and inhale it frequently for relief from a migraine headache.

Carom seeds for ear and toothaches:
Here, the oil extracted from the carom seeds becomes useful! You can buy it at any medical store. It provides instant relief.

How to use: For an earache, you have to use the oil directly. Just put two drops of the oil in the ear. If you are suffering from a toothache, you need to mix 1 teaspoon of carom seeds with a pinch of salt in a glass of lukewarm water. Gargle with this warm water at least twice a day until you have complete relief.

Tip: Gargling with this water regularly also helps maintain good oral hygiene.

Carom seeds for cleaning bruises:
The thymol in the carom seeds also acts as an agent to kill germs. Often, these seeds are crushed into a paste and used to treat minor cuts and wound. These caroms seeds also contain terpenes, sterols, and glycosides, which help in reducing and soothing inflammation around the wound.

How to use: For minor cuts and bruises, crush carom seeds and apply the paste on the bruise. Clean it with a clean cloth.

Tip: you can also wash the wound with carom seed water.

Carom seeds help fight premature greying of hair:
Carom seeds are used to fight premature greying of hair.

How to use: Make a solution of a handful of curry leaves, a few raisins, a teaspoon of sugar and a teaspoon of carom seeds in one cup of water. Cook this solution for five to seven minutes, and strain it after turning of the heat. Drink this water every day, once a day for a month. After you start seeing results in a reduction of the speed of greying, reduce the frequency of consuming the water to thrice or twice a week.

Tip: Combine this will regular oiling of hair, to prevent premature greying.

Carom seeds properties as a natural mosquito repellent:
If you are afraid of using repellents available in the market due to the fumes, you can easily create a natural one at home, using carom seeds. The store-bought repellents can cause harmful fumes in a closed room, and will not be effective in an open area. Try this natural remedy instead.

How to use: Mix equal quantities of carom seeds and mustard oil, so it forms a thick paste. Adjust quantities in a way that you can spread this mixture easily over small pieces of cardboard (about three inch-squares). Place these pieces of cardboard in the corners of the rooms of your house to keep mosquitoes at bay. You will achieve the purpose well, without the harmful fumes from the repellents.

Tip: You can also add a drop of citronella oil to this paste before applying on the cardboard for a sweet scent.

Carom seeds ease arthritis pain:
One of the home uses of carom seeds is that they can be used for relief from the aches and pain related to arthritis. As mentioned earlier, they can also reduce redness and ease inflammation.

How to use: Crush the carom seeds with a little water and apply it on the painful areas and leave it on for a while, at least 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can also soak the affected area in a tub of how water with a handful of carom seeds.

Tip: You can use the carom oil directly on the aches as well.


A Cup Of Tea May Help Improve Brain Health

Dr. HelloDox Care #
HelloDox Care

All the tea lovers, this one's for you! Tea is one of the most consumed beverages in the world. Each one of us has a unique way of making our cup of tea like adding flavours of ginger and cardamom to our tea, enjoying it with less milk, more milk, only milk, or we may even seep or boil it to get our very own steaming cup of joy! Tea lovers may now cheer up as a new study has suggested that consuming the beverage on a regular basis may not only act as an energy booster and make you feel relaxed but also improve cognitive skills and brain health.

According to the findings of a study, published in the journal Impact Journals LLC, individual constituents of tea were related to the roles of maintaining cognitive abilities and preventing cognitive decline. There is another study with behavioural and neurophysiological measures showed that there was a degraded effect or no effect when a constituent was administered alone and a significant effect was observed only when constituents were combined.

"Tea has been a popular beverage since antiquity, with records referring to consumption dating back to the dynasty of Shen Nong (approximately 2700 BC) in China," said lead researcher Dr. Junhua Li from Tsinghua University in Beijing.

For the study, the team of researchers analyzed healthy older participants into two groups according to their history of tea drinking frequency and investigated both functional and structural networks to reveal the role of tea drinking on brain organisation. They also found that tea also helps in warding off Alzheimers -- a chronic neurodegenerative disease that usually starts slowly and gradually worsens over time.

"In summary, our study comprehensively investigated the effects of tea drinking on brain connectivity at both global and regional scales using multi-modal imaging data and provided the first compelling evidence that tea drinking positively contributes to brain structure making network organization more efficient," Li added.

Other Health Benefits Of Tea:
Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, increases alertness and decreases sleepiness.
Theophylline is a compound present in tea that relaxes the muscles in the air passages, helping people breathe easy. It also increases the heart rate and force of heart contractions.
Theobromine helps reduce blood pressure by improving blood flow and acts as a mild diuretic too.
L-Theanine increases the formation of alpha waves in the brain, which are associated with alert relaxation.


10 Home Remedies For Diabetes That Reduce Your Blood Sugar

Dr. HelloDox Care #
HelloDox Care

Scientists from various parts of the world involved in a 6 million study have come up with an interesting revelation: Long-term remission from type 2 diabetes is possible just by losing 1 gram of fat from the pancreas. While this finding comes as a surprise to many, there are some facts about blood sugar that we are all aware of. Type 2 diabetes has a strong association with your lifestyle. What you eat determines your susceptibility to this condition and also, how well you can manage it.

Type 2 diabetes affects the body’s ability to either produce insulin or to use insulin effectively, you need treatment to keep your blood sugar levels within a normal range. Although there are numerous treatment options available to keep your blood sugar levels in control, home remedies can work wonders in achieving this task. Here are top 10 effective home remedies to maintain your blood sugar levels and lead a healthy life with diabetes.

#1 Holy Basil (Tulsi) Leaves
The leaves of holy basil are packed with antioxidants and essential oils that produce eugenol, methyl eugenol and caryophyllene. Collectively these compounds help the pancreatic beta cells (cells that store and release insulin) to function properly and increase sensitivity to insulin. An added advantage is that the antioxidants present in the leaves help beat the ill effects of oxidative stress.

Tip: Consume two to three tulsi leaves whole or about one tablespoon full of its juice on an empty stomach to lower the blood sugar levels. Here are top 10 health benefits of tulsi.

#2 Flax Seeds (Alsi)
Due to their high fibre content flaxseeds help digestion and aid in the proper absorption of fats and sugars. Consuming flax seed helps reduce a diabetic’s postprandial sugar level by almost 28 percent.

Tip: Consume one tablespoon of ground flaxseed powder every morning on an empty stomach with a glass of warm water. However, do not have more than 2 tablespoons per day, as it can be detrimental to your health. Here are 11 ways to include flaxseeds in your diet.

#3 Leaves Of Bilberry (Neelabadari) Plant
The leaves of bilberry have been used in Ayurveda for many centuries to control diabetes. Recently, the Journal of Nutrition stated that the leaves of the Bilberry plant contain high amounts of anthocyanidin, which enhance the action of various proteins involved in glucose transportation and fat metabolism. Due to this unique property, bilberry leaves are a great way to lower one’s blood sugar levels.

Tip: Crush bilberry leaves in a mortar and pestle and consume 100 milligrams of this extract every day on an empty stomach.

#4 Cinnamon (Dalchini)
Also known as dalchini, it improves insulin sensitivity and lower blood glucose levels. Having as little as ½ teaspoon of cinnamon per day can improve one’s insulin sensitivity and help controlling weight, thereby decreasing one’s risk for heart disease.

Tip: Include about 1 gram of dalchini into your daily diet for about a month to help lower blood sugar levels. Read more health benefits of cinnamon.

#5 Green Tea
Unlike other tea leaves, green tea is unfermented and is high in polyphenol content. Polyphenol is a strong antioxidant and hypo-glycaemic compound that helps control the release of blood sugars and helps the body use insulin better. Read more 10 types of flavoured green tea that have 20 health benefits.

Tip: Steep a bag of green tea in hot water for 2-3 minutes. Remove the bag and drink a cup of this tea in the morning or before your meals.

#6 Drumstick Leaves
Also called moringa, the leaves of this plant are best known for their ability to boost one’s energy. These have also been declared a superfood. In the case of diabetics, the moringa leaf increases satiety and slows the breakdown of food and lower blood pressure.

Tip: Take a few drumstick leaves, wash and crush them to extract their juice. Now take about 1/4th cup of this juice and drink it on an empty stomach, every morning to keep your sugar levels under control.

#7 Psyllium Husk (Isabgol)
Also known as psyllium husk is often used as a laxative. When isabgol comes in contact with water, it swells to form a gel-like substance. This slows the breakdown and absorption of blood glucose. Isabgol also protects the stomach lining from ulcers and acidity.

Tip: Cosume isabgol after every meal, ideally with milk or water. Avoid having it with curd as it can lead to constipation. Read in detail about 8 health benefits of isabgol or psyllium husk you didn’t know.

#8 Bitter Gourd (Karela)
Bitter gourd is rich in plant insulin-polypeptide-P, a bio-chemical that mimics the insulin produced by the human pancreas and thus, reduces sugar levels in the body. It is also known to be highly beneficial for diabetics owing to the two very essential compounds called charatin and momordicin, which are the key compounds in lowering one’s blood sugar levels.

Tip: Consume karela at least once a week either as a subzi or in a curry. If you want quick results, try having a glass of karela juice on an empty stomach once in three days. Read more about 8 healthy reasons to drink bittergourd or karela juice!

#9 Neem
Found abundantly in India, the bitter leaf has a number of amazing medicinal properties. Neem enhances insulin receptor sensitivity, helps improve blood circulation by dilating the blood vessels, lowers blood glucose levels and reduces one’s dependence on hypoglycemic drugs. Here are more health benefits of neem.

Tip: Drink the juice of the tender shoot of neem leaves on an empty stomach for best results.

#10 Indian Blackberry (Jamun)
A glycoside present in the seeds of Indian blackberry prevents the conversion of starch to sugar. It lowers blood sugar and helps prevent insulin spikes. Jambul also has properties that can protect you from heart diseases and other vascular disorders.

Tip: Eat around 5 – 6 jamuns in the morning to control your blood sugar levels. Alternatively, you can also add a spoonful of jamun seeds powder to a glass of warm water or milk and drink this daily for better control of diabetes.

Dr. Richa
Dr. Richa
BAMS, Mumbai Suburban
Dr. Rupali Sawarkar
Dr. Rupali Sawarkar
BAMS, Family Physician Physician, 11 yrs, Pune
Dr. Ajay Rokade
Dr. Ajay Rokade
MD - Homeopathy, Family Physician Homeopath, 15 yrs, Pune
Dr. Yogesh Patil
Dr. Yogesh Patil
BAMS, Ayurveda Family Physician, 8 yrs, Pune
Dr. Shivdas Patil
Dr. Shivdas Patil
BAMS, Family Physician, 8 yrs, Pune