Self-discovery through Jasmine builds on shifting sands

Fiction and self-help are two of my favourite genres of books. I really don’t know the time ticking when I settle down in my reading corner with books in any one of these genres.

What I look for in self-help books is strategies, lessons, case studies which tell you what to and what not to do.

When I came to know that this book has both self-help and fiction entwined I knew I definitely had to pick it up.

What I could also relate is that the book is set in modern period and so is something everyone of us millenials could resonate to.

It takes a lot of time for us to understand ourselves in a better way. The process of understanding oneself, about what we can and what we cannot, how we can and when we can is called self-discovery. Not everyone of us do this at the same time. Time plays an important role in making us realise this. This book embarks you on Jasmine’s journey of self-discovery.



The picturesque views of Himalayas while describing the journey to Kedarnath, would make you embark on a virtual journey. The pure relationship between the author and his spiritual teacher , their conversations mentioned provide a lot of learning.

Jasmine who was about to land into a professional career eventually landed into the world of modelling. So how does she handle it ? Does she succeed or fail ?

She had her parts of failures, jealousies, competition, wrong ways and finally rose above all of it. The author has a lot of learnings from life which he’s penned out beautifully through the story of Jasmine.

Everyone of us has a dream, a goal or an aim. We pursue our actions towards them . Did you know that the universe also has a major role in making our dreams come true?

A motivational book that helps you to stay focused and have a positive approach to rise above hurdles and accomplish the dream. The connection to the universe and it’s integral part in making our dreams come true also is a lesson to be learnt.

I love the writing style of the author which he serves to keep it lucid and brief. Overall a good guide for self-motivation and self-discovery.

The QR code scanning of certain chapters, through e-micro-learning is a completely different experience which is suggest all book lovers and people who are digital fan boys must check out.

Following our passion by overcoming hurdles should definitely be made a mandatory life skill to be possessed.

About the author

Sanjay is an entrepreneur and an ex-banker, an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and a Chartered Accountant. During his successful career, Sanjay has been integrating the essence of a parallel spiritual journey with his material pursuits. He has now set out to share the ways and means of seamlessly traversing through the material and spiritual world. Thereby, enriching each journey.

Click on the book cover below to purchase this motivational guide .

Review of Jasmine builds on shifting sands

Jasmine builds on shifting sands

BLURB

Integrated with hybrid multimedia learning tools, Jasmine Builds on Shifting Sands is a unique self-help fiction offering. Its captivating narrative ties two seemingly distinct tales in an intertwined journey that explores the manifestation of dreams. At the center of the book is Jasmine’s journey of making it as a successful model in the cut-throat world of fashion. Her tale of victory and failure is enveloped within the master narrative of Sanjay, an erudite knowledge-seeker who meets his spiritual guru- Ma. Set between the esoter ic location of the Himalayas and the urban bustle of Mumbai, the book offers an enhanced learning experience which is further amplified through the embedded microlearning content that is interspersed throughout the text, making for a truly immersive experience.

MY REVIEW

Jasmine builds on shifting sands

Fiction and self-help are two of my favourite genres of books. I really don’t know the time ticking when I settle down in my reading corner with books in any one of these genres.

As much as I enjoy fiction, I also enjoy reading self-help books and try implementing principles which suit my way of life. That’s what they’re written for right?

What I look for in self-help books is strategies, lessons, case studies which tell you what to and what not to do. They should make you feel that you could try attempting to implement lessons learned. Examples which state what went wrong and how could that have been handled to make it successful are stuffs which anyone would basically look for in self-help books.

When I came to know that this book has both self-help and fiction entwined I knew I definitely had to pick it up.

What I could also relate is that the book is set in modern period and so is something everyone of us millenials could resonate to.

It takes a lot of time for us to understand ourselves in a better way. Not knowing about ourselves and instead looking out for others to accept us is something that is not plausible. The process of understanding oneself, about what we can and what we cannot, how we can and when we can is called self-discovery. Not everyone of us do this at the same time. For some of us this process happens early and for some later on. This book embarks you on Jasmine’s journey of self-discovery.

The Prologue and the Epilogue add value by providing a powerful context arising from the author’s own personal experience.

The realistic description of the travel to Kedarnath, the picturesque views of Himalaya would make you embark on a virtual journey. The divine relationship between the author and his spiritual guru , their conversations mentioned provide a lot of spiritual learning.

Jasmine who was about to land into a professional career life eventually landed into the world of fashion. Now that is two extreme opposite fields. So how does she handle it ? Does she succeed or fail ? Is she happy or keeps brooding ?

The field that she landed was something completely new to her. She had her parts of failures, jealousies, competition, wrong ways and finally rose above all of it. The author has a lot of learnings from life which he’s penned out beautifully through the story of Jasmine.

Everyone of us has a dream, a goal or an aim. We pursue our actions towards them . We chart out a goal plan to achieve the results. Did you know that the universe also has a major role in making our dreams come true? Now that is what the author tries to convey.

A motivational book that helps you to stay focused and have a positive approach to rise above hurdles and accomplish the dream. The connection to the universe and it’s integral part in making our dreams come true also is a lesson to be learnt.

I love the writing style of the author which he serves to keep it simple and crisp. No beating around the bush or extravagant descriptions. Overall a good one for self-motivation and self-discovery.

About the author :

Sanjay is an entrepreneur and an ex-banker, an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and a Chartered Accountant. During his successful career, Sanjay has been integrating the essence of a parallel spiritual journey with his material pursuits. He has now set out to share the ways and means of seamlessly traversing through the material and spiritual world. Thereby, enriching each journey.

Click below on the thumbnail to buy yourself a copy.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla, and generously SPONSORED BY Bugshield Clothing – Enjoy Outdoors More!

Do you blame others? – Read this to take care

Pointing out

Mental health can not only be at stake when you pipe things up on your mind about yourself or at behaviour people exert on you .

Did you know that your way of thinking about others can also cause issues to your mental health. Yes by this, I mean pointing out at others.

While there are people who only think about themselves, there is another category that people fall into that’s much more dangerous. Some people can’t be or cannot keep quiet without pointing fingers at others or blaming others. They fail to notice that it is only one of their fingers that points to the other person and the remaining point to them.

This way of pointing out is not only for things that happen to you, but even otherwise they are habituated to pointing out at people’s mistake or at how stupid they can be.

It’s a habit that can ruin yourself where people bother you easily which puts you in a situation where you can’t stop from sharing your thoughts of judgement. Most importantly it could be happening even without you knowing about it. Doesn’t it sound dangerous?

But the good news would be that once you realise or if somebody helps you understand what’s actually happening by making you pay the price for the self-harm that you have created it can definitely be avoided. Now that’s something you could be relieved of.

Why is pointing out at others put you in serious risk?

  • Peaks the negativity in your body and kills the cells.
  • People can’t get close to you because this behaviour of yours is turning them off.
  • The behaviour inadvertently creates and perpetuates depression.
  • Definitely starts limiting your happiness.
  • Creates a band of negative energy around you and name you as a negative energy radiator.
  • Will be a hurdle in your important relationships and isolates you.

Our way of upbringing or the way we are brought up definitely contributes to our sensitivities. Finally it all comes down to whether we have a monitor system to make you aware of how and when you share what bothers you about people around you.

Quite often if you see the prime candidates list who take the blame would be the kids, parents, spouse and friends.

Blaming your husband for not being outgoing and that bothering your social life.

Blaming kids behaviour for not inviting guests at home.

Blaming relatives for relationship issues and your perspective of viewing a relationship as healthy.

The ones I stated above are just some of the examples.

It could be really tempting to go blame others , your habits , thinking habits for things going wrong in your life. But that’s definitely not leading you to the root cause of the problem.

Blaming others for emotional and mental issues can make you rely on the habit to such an extent that it is the permanent pathway to sabotage the ability of you keeping yourself and others who surround you happy.

Your aversion or pet peeves provide the pathway of how to interpret to see the world and something that you use to look through other people’s action.

So when you’re in a group and you have the habit of blaming others, I’d bet you would be the most unhappiest person in the whole group. The habit typically makes you a fault finding radar and literally pushes you to keep finding faults on others.

Why does this habit make you unhappy ?

Insecurities

Insecurity

Most probably people are seen pointing out faults in which they’ve struggled during childhood. It totally points to insecurity of things that people find faults in others. A person who finds faults constantly is characterized as someone who finds it difficult to apologize and denial of responsibility.

It leads to negative and pessimistic environment around you. Instead of focusing on people’s good deeds you seem to find faults. So this is something like instead of proceeding to solutions you choose to stay with the problem.

Memories of influential parents

Influential parents

If you make people recall they would have inherited this behaviour from their parents or a close relative. A resentment towards this parent or relative who was critical on them often shows up in this behaviour.

Instead of working on ways to curb this negative behaviour in present scenario, this will make you stay in the past.

Makes feel superior but brings unhappiness instantly

When people find faults with others or point fingers at others it gives them a rush or a feeling of superiority. But with minutes you can notice that it changes the mood to unhappiness instantly.


“Strong minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, weak minds discuss people.”


Leads to depression

It takes very little time for you to spoil your mood if you keep finding faults in others. Self – devaluation or finding faults on others can lead to depression.

How do you solve this ?

  • Start pointing out the goodness in people or their deeds even if it’s something small.
  • The more you do invest in recognising others you could also see an improvement in self recognition.
  • Having difficulty in apologising cannot be wiped out in seconds, it takes a lot of effort to understand that it could be a way of clearing out the mass.
  • Make sure you avoid to show people how you inherited the tendency to judge other people and their actions.
  • Create an imaginary filter that helps to separate what to express and what not to.

“If you don’t have something nice to say, keep it to yourself.”


  • Too much bothering or finding fault in others problems or issues is definitely a sign that you definitely need to spend more time on doing what you need to achieve. This may be your goals to achieve personal growth.
  • Make a list of things every morning that you’re grateful for.
  • This habit in the long run might be Blogchattereating you bit by bit. So it’s better to avoid it to keep yourself and your body safe.

This post is part of #CauseAChatter with Blogchatter

Lip smacking vadacurry

Dosa with vadacurry

Vadacurry is a South Indian dish that can be paired with idly, dosa and poori. A tomato onion based gravy wherein you find bits and pieces of lentil/Dal vada soaked gives you a perfect compliment taste to the idlis or dosas. In most hotels this is made with leftover vadas. But you can choose to make fresh vadas for this recipe as well. You could keep some for snacking and add in the remaining into the gravy , so it serves two purpose.

Popularly paired with set dosa you can see this combination on most hotel menus in South India as set dosa vadacurry.

I will share my age old recipe that has been passed over generations. Read till the end where I give you a quick tip.if you are lazy to make vadas but still would want to relish vadacurry.

Ingredients :

For vada:

Channa Dal – 1 cup soaked 2 hours
Fennel seeds -1 tbsp
Green chilli or red chilli – 2 numbers
Garlic – 2 cloves

Curry leaves – 1 sprig
Coriander leaves -1 tbsp chopped
Salt – as required

Gravy :

Bay leaf -1

Cloves -1

Cinnamon -1/2″ inch
Ginger garlic paste or ginger and garlic crushed – 1 tbsp each
Chilli powder -2 tbsp
Turmeric powder -1 tbsp
Coriander powder -3 tbsp
Tomato -3 chopped

Onion -2 chopped
Mustard seeds -1 tbsp
Oil- for tempering
Fennel -1 tbsp

Salt – as required
Asafoetida – 1/4 tbsp
Curry leaves -1 sprig
Green chilli – 2 slit
Coriander leaves – for garnish
Coconut milk (optional) – 1/2 cup

Method

To make vada

Once the channa Dal is soaked grind with the rest of ingredients. Grind coarsely and not as smooth batter. Deep fry in oil or cook in appe pan. If I’m pairing with idlies I steam it along so it gets cooked and then mixed with gravy. This gives a unique taste go the dish than the deep fried vadas.

Gravy

1. Temper mustard seeds, fennel seeds, curry leaves , asafoetida , cinnamon, clove , bay leaf and green chillies.

2. Add in chopped onion and ginger garlic paste and saute for two mins until onion turns pale.

3. Add in chopped tomatoes and saute until tomato gets mushy. You could also add in some salt or sugar to speed up the process.

4. Once this is mushy start adding the spice powders one by one. Mix well and add some water for maintaining consistency.

5. The vada already has salt so adjust salt in gravy accordingly. After about 7-8 mins the gravy is well cooked. You can choose to pour in some coconut milk if you want else it’s completely fine.

6. Gently mix and when it starts to mildly bubble turn off add the vadas give a stir and close.

7. Let the vadas soak in the gravy. Remove lid and garnish with coriander leaves.

Absolutely lip smacking vadacurry is ready and can be had with idlies, dosa or pooris.

So and yes for the little secret tip, if you want to relish vadacurry but not in mood to make vadas or have any leftover vadas you can choose to add Kara boondi in place of vadas. They work amazingly well as replacements.

Variations to the vada would be steaming along with idly or cooking in appe pan and then crumbled to be added to gravy.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy and Noor Anand Chawla, and happily SPONSORED BY RRE Studios and SHOWCASE Events.

Book review of Doctor’s kitchen 3-2-1

Doctor’s kitchen 3-2-1 by Dr. Rupy Aujla

Food and lifestyle go hand in hand. This is a hard reality but that is what it is. Most of us tend to ignore or take proper care of what we eat. The food that we eat is what fuels our body, so we should be careful in knowing what goes inside.

It shouldn’t be destroying the body in the process of consumption.

 On the contrary, stopping to consume as part of a diet plan is not going to be of any help at all.

A good diet and a great workout routine go hand in hand to make you achieve a strong and toned physique. If you do not pay much attention to what goes into your body, it is going to show up in your physique and metabolism. Foods rich in sodium, sugar, and fats can help you curb hunger pangs, make you eat more than what is required making your body pile up the pounds but in the long run, will also be the reason for you to succumb to chronic illness. This is the main reason that you should be aware of what your food is made of before it goes inside your body. So a balanced diet that has carbs, proteins, fibers, and vitamins is the right choice.

Plan and cook your meals I’m in advance so that you don’t run hastily at the last minute. Most importantly this would help you in avoiding reaching out to unhealthy food options such as ready to eat, sugar, and sodium loaded foods. Choose a meal plan that suits your body type and one that would help you in reaching your goal.

Rupy Aujla is a medical doctor, home cook, and a portion of food as a medical advocate. That brings us to another point that the food we consume not only plays the part of fuel but also helps in healing conditions and ailments in the notion that food is medicine.

In his recent book, the author brings about a concept 3-2-1.

What is 3-2-1?

A three-part meal with fruits and vegetables for two people cooked in one pan. In this formula or way of cooking the author promises a change in life. The formula aims at ensuring health benefits to optimize healthy living and to streamline the process of cooking. As someone who wants to be fit and healthy by not slogging in the kitchen to cook meals that claim to help in losing pounds, I think this would definitely be a game-changer in cookbooks.

As a working mother of two and also a conscious member of the family who wishes to provide healthy meals to her family, the book does seem to be a quick go-to for me to cook a no-fuss recipe that would yield multiple health benefits. And what took me in awe is the one pan mention which also saves me from the horrendous task of the sink piling up with vessels to be washed. Isn’t this something that all we ladies wish for?

A daily dose of fresh produce, good quality fat, grains, and fibers is what a balanced meal needs to be comprised of and I think the 3-2-1 could be the best way to get this done right. The food that we eat can change the way we think, help in making our mood better, build or boost immunity levels and reduce infection.

When you say you eat well it not only means that you remove unhealthy stuff it is also about taking in foods that help to safeguard yourself from ailments. There is so much to understand between the communications that happen between what you see on your plate and the inner ecosystem. By ecosystem, it means the body that accepts whatever we eat and provides us the necessary energy needed to toil. We also need to understand that in reality we as people find it difficult to continue eating healthily. There is a roadblock somewhere in the form of work, stress, or time that hinders the habit of eating healthy meals in the longer run. Keeping this in mind is what the author promises that his 3-2-1 strategy can help us, in the long run, to eat healthy meals and cultivate an inner chef.

Eat the colours

The author talks about the colors in foods that need to be taken and their health benefits.

Red foods help in relaxing blood vessels and blood pressure.



Green foods help in brain and heart functioning. Green foods that are termed cruciferous have anti-cancer compounds. Green foods like broccoli help in the detoxification of the body.



Yellow and oranges foods are sources of vitamin C and beta carotenes they help in boosting immunity, load the system with anti-oxidants, and also lowering inflammation.

So the next time when we come across the term eat the rainbow or rainbow plate, we must remember it means food that covers all nutritional needs of the body.

The author also provides a lot of recipes ranging from salads, oats, curries, soups, stir-fries that would be in the formulation of 3-2-1 helping us achieve the goal of healthy living. A 100 recipes that guarantee to eat healthily and leading a better lifestyle. So always keep in mind that food is medicine and food is fuel.

What I like about the recipes are that you also get to swap the ingredients with variants that would suit us, By this, I mean a healthy swap or swapping due to non-availability.

Health is something that we need to practice daily and the meal that we consume is what would guide us through this journey of leading a healthy lifestyle. So make sure you make the meal preparation minimal and maximize the utilization of what goes inside us.

Doctor’s kitchen 3-2-1 by Dr. Rupy Aujla

You can buy this book here.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy and Noor Anand Chawla, and happily SPONSORED BY RRE Studios and SHOWCASE Events.

LIFESTYLE CHANGES TO HAVE A STRONGER AND TONED PHYSIQUE

Being thin like a chopstick or appearing and being a size zero is no longer the ideal achievement that every woman yearns for. A strong and toned physique is the need of the hour and something that would keep you going. Wonder why? Because when you have a stronger and toned physique you appear to be more confident and powerful.

Being a strong and independent woman can give you the power and confidence to achieve anything. Given any situation, you would be able to handle that with ease. What also comes with having a toned physique is that you’d look great in whatever you choose to wear. Isn’t that a double bonanza?

But does getting a stronger and toned physique to be achieved overnight? Remember ‘ Rome was not built in a day’. It takes patience, strategy, willingness to adapt to make it happen.
Also, keep in mind that the gym is not the only way or the only solution that would yield you a toned physique.

Here are a few tips which could help you on this journey.


1) Goal setting
A journey needs a plan to make it happen. Not knowing the destination and route will leave you being lost. So get your goals set on what you want to achieve. If you are on the higher side or obese make sure you focus on losing weight and toning down your body. On the other hand, if you are thin your focus should be on gaining enough weight and muscle building. All this should be done the right way at a consistent pace. Doing it in haste or opting for plans that guarantee quick results will land your body in trouble if not now somewhere in the future too. So make sure you decide to do it the right way by making a conscious choice. So your workout routine and the diet or meal plan that you follow makes you remain focused throughout the journey and setting goals is the first and foremost step that rewards you.

2) Charting out the right meal
Food that we consume is something that helps to fuel our bodies. It shouldn’t be destroying the body in the process of consumption.
On the contrary, stopping to consume as part of a diet plan is not going to be of any help at all. Remember food is fuel.
A good diet and a great workout routine go hand in hand to make you achieve a strong and toned physique. If you do not pay much attention to what goes into your body, it is going to show up in your physique and metabolism. Foods rich in sodium, sugar, and fats can help you curb hunger pangs, make you eat more than what is required making your body pile up the pounds but in the long run, will also be the reason for you to succumb to chronic illness. This is the main reason that you should be aware of what your food is made of before it goes inside your body. So a balanced diet that has carbs, proteins, fibers, and vitamins is the right choice.
Plan and cook your meals I’m advance so that you don’t run hastily at the last minute. Most importantly this would help you in avoiding yourself from reaching out to unhealthy food options such as ready to eat, sugar, and sodium loaded foods. Choose a meal plan that suits your body type and one that would help you in reaching your goal.

3) Workout routine
A great workout routine sets the crux on your journey. Eating right and working out with a proper routine helps you in achieving the goal the right way. Chart out a consistent routine, which will help you keep the momentum of making you reach the goal. If you do not have a routine set you will probably lose track and interest in moving ahead in the journey. So always remember consistency is the key.
If you cannot set a routine on your own, you could ask the gym instructor to help you out with a routine that will make you stay on track and push you further.

4) Keep clean
Sweating is probably going to happen when you start working out. So make sure that you keep yourself clean and well hydrated. This will help flush out toxins the right way.
Be it home or gym always takes a shower post working out. It would help you cool down and also relax the muscles.
With us being in the middle of the pandemic, it is important to maintain social distancing, washing hands frequently, and always carry a face mask and hand sanitizer.

5) Choosing the right Gym gear
Nothing gives you much pleasure than seeing how well you fit into gym gear. The more you work out it’s going to make it even better. Choosing fashionable and functional gym gear is a must. With numerous clothing lines in this gym gear business, you sure do have a big ocean of choices.

6) Weight lifting is not something to be afraid of
Lifting weights is not to gain weight and appear to be bulging. This is a notion that needs much clarity. Lifting weights makes you athletic and makes you appear toned. This way of packing muscles also helps in bringing down the risk of osteoporosis. This muscle build-up will help in supporting your spine thereby yielding a benefit in lifting weights. So make sure that you include lifting weights into your workout routine.

7) stay sober
Alcohol is going to make you gain and pile up empty calories, disrupt sleep cycles, and increase cortisol production that’s going to cause stress. Drinking alcohol during this journey would lead to a derailment. Save your drinks only for special occasions. Your Friday and Saturday nights can wait but not before your journey to attain the toned physique.

Women often tend to gain more weight on the lower body. Your butt, thigh needs to be toned to not make you look like a money bag.

So how do you achieve a firmer butt or lift it to make it appear toned?


Once you achieve your goal, make sure that you remain consistent to maintain the health and continue to train and this will in turn become your lifestyle.

Women could be seen as resorting to taking treatments to make them appear young and fit.
Treatments for toning, enhancement, reduction have been doing rounds lately. The bum, breasts, and hips are where women put on a lot of weight. Toning them, enhancing them are the bodily changes people often take.

Namyaa Brazilian bum cream


Namyaa Brazilian bum cream works in increasing the volume, look and feel of the butt. Helps in elevating the curves and contours to give you a toned fuller butt. It’s easy to use and developed with certified products.

Ingredients: Chamomile, Nutmeg, Macadamia seed oil, Glycerine, Anemarrhena asphodeloides (Root) extract.

Directions to use:
1) Apply the required amount onto palms.
2) Gently apply on the bum and massage until it gets absorbed.
3) Do it twice a day for at least six weeks to see visible results.

Price: Rs.599 for 100gm

Available on Amazon and their website.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla, and happily SPONSORED BY RRE Studios and SHOWCASE Events.

Five habits of people with good skin

Taking care of good skin

Some people when you look at them, the immediate thought that strikes up your mind is “my my, how clear is the skin?” . Sit down and think if you have asked this question at least once.

For some people, they are blessed with genes who have clear luminous skin. But if you still want to have that beautiful skin that would make eyeballs roll, you need to make sure the below pointers are what you follow. You need to religiously take good care and simple steps to maintain skin. Glowing skin doesn’t appear in a jiffy. It needs your dedication to keep you devoted to follow that regimen.

Here are five most common habits which people who have good skin follow.

1. Hydration

Drinking enough water to keep hydrated

The key and the foremost habit that you need to cultivate if you aren’t doing. At least two liters of water a day. Drinking plain water is the natural way to flush out toxins. If you still don’t drink enough water, you would probably making way for the toxins to pile up and result in clogged pores. Your skin needs to have proper elasticity, be supple enough and free of any wrinkles. For this, drinking water is the first and easiest habit that you can cultivate. Not only good for your skin and great for your body too. Not drinking enough water makes skin dry and lose its shine. The skin deserves its dose of nutrition every day and no better simple food that giving it enough water.

Therefore hydration is the most easiest and first step to good skin.

2. A goodnight’s sleep

A good sleep

Have you ever wondered why the term is coined as ‘beauty sleep’. The repair process of the body needs sleep to be a most important factor. An essential routine that boosts blood circulation and takes care of skin repair. So make sure you have a goodnight’s sleep and sleep like a baby.


3. Sunscreen or SPFs for the rescue

Applying sunscreen

Photo aging refers to skin damage caused to longer exposure to sunlight and UVA /UVB rays. Invest in a good sunscreen and your skin will thank you later. Fine lines, pigmentation showing up as blemishes are often result of sun exposure leading to premature ageing. So make sure before you take your wallet next time you step out, apply a generous amount of sunscreen on face, neck and other exposed parts of body.

4. CTM- Cleanse, Tone and moisturize

CTM routine

Cleanse– Washing off impurities and thereby unclogging the pores.

Tone – Toner removes last trace of dirt or impurities from skin post face wash. When done regularly you could see a visible difference in skin tightening due to lesser pores.

Moisturize– A gentle way to keep your skin hydrated and not becoming dry. You could avoid using soaps often and go on to opt for a humidifier.

Above in short in known as CTM routine and is predominantly carries out before bedtime. Doing this religiously helps skin heal of any skin related problems and provides a routine for it to run the repair and regeneration process during the night time.

Also one important point to keep in mind is to choose products for CTM according to your skin type. This will not only prove beneficial but also prevent any side effects by using products which don’t suit your skin type.

5. Eating a healthy and a balanced meal

Balanced diet

A proper meal that has all vital nutrients aids a lot of benefits to your body. So when your body feels good, it immediately shows up on your skin. Not only eating nutrient food, eating right food in the right way is what I’d want to suggest. Foods rich in anti-oxidants like oranges, tomatoes and berries provide a lot of skin benefits. These foods help delay skin ageing and improve collagen building. Avoid foods having excess oil, sugar, preservatives and foods that are processed to flaunt that healthy skin.

As mentioned above, these are five most common habits that are followed by people around the world to maintain good skin. The priority or importance is not strictly based on the order that I have mentioned.

Make sure you do a patch test every time you try out a new product. Do not go by blind recommendations. Make sure to check the ingredients and suitability to skin type before purchasing a new skincare product.

If you experience or suffer from a skin problem do not hesitate to reach out to a dermatologist. Do not go by following everyone’s advice. Until and unless they have experience in the field, do not reach out to random people on social media asking for skincare advice.

Not all highly priced products give you good results and those which are priced less result in failures. Keep that in mind and start taking care of your skin.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla, and happily SPONSORED BY RRE Studios and SHOWCASE Events.

Lockdown: what it had in store for women?

2020 and women

Every woman out there needs support and a bit of encouragement to sail through. Although we do say that we do not need the constant push cause it’s usually in our genes that I’d say that we make sure that everyone else gets what they want and finally settle down to get something for us. We don’t complain or brood about it. Self contented is what id chose to explain that emotion.

When was the last time you sat down to have a hearty laugh and eat along with your family? If the answer is we do this all the time I’m certainly happy for you. But there are a lot of families where this wouldn’t have happened at all. It’s time for them to sit down think and make sure you give that woman some rest and joy of having a meal with you without a worry in her mind.

The lockdown not only brought every thing to a standstill but also made a drastic lifestyle change which brought in a lot of health complications. When it comes to a woman,the first thing that strikes you would be her reproductive health. Yes that’s a major lifestyle induced medical conditions that saw a lot of incoming cases and hospital visits.

Women and periods

Did you know that the lockdown stress had about 25% of women experience irregular periods? Blame it on the lifestyle change that involved a change in food sleep and physical activity totally resulting in this. Stress induced by this and to top it all taking care of the house and children played its part in fiddling with the delicate monthly cycle. A no-show at the end of the month brought in a lot of worries.

While the no-show brought in a lot of smiles for many yes I did come across a lot of lockdown pregnancy announcement for whom I’m happy for. For the rest it really did play with their reproductive health and the stress hormone cortisol levels causing a major disruption in their mental health. A lot of women with controlled PCOD jumped over the wall due to the improper sleep cycle and untimely food habits. Women experienced varying symptoms but all pointing to stress induced illnesses. So next time there is a no-show don’t ignore. This is not something to worry only when you plan on having a baby.

The lockdown also lowered socialising to a great extent. People feared to venture out even for genuine causes. Being a new mother myself, I had a lot of things running in my mind to handle delivering a baby during the lockdown. Thank God that the hospital was well prepared to handle the crisis and everything went on smooth and we came back to our nest safely.

Life with a newborn

But what was running in mind was a lot of doubts . Being a second time mother I was confident that I could handle this and I had things under control, but there was also the slightest doubts on one corner bothering me. What do I do ? That’s when hospitals had equipped themselves for video consultations. What a boon technology is? Not to forget that we also saw rising number of WhatsApp groups for new mothers which had doctors guiding them then and there. I was glad I had professional help handy and made life much easier for me. So thankful for the women who initiated the groups to help out other women.

Career options poured in from all directions. People who lost their livelihood and companies who couldn’t continue paying employees left a hole in many families. Thankful to opportunities that were freelance and those which offered upskilling people equipped themselves well to be prepared to take up good opportunities.

Career options for women

I’d seen that schools and educational institution were willing to take in women to help cope the demand for online classes. A lot of women with basic qualifications were employed.

Education portals opened access allowing the population to stay up to date, make the time useful and learn or upskill themselves.

Womenpreneurs bloomed, small scale, large scale , women who dreamt of coming up with their own venture came out of the shell proved success . I did see a lot of women supporting them through Instagram lives handling pop up sales and expanding market.

Womenpreneurs

On my part I did Collaborate with a lot of small scale , local ,men/woman owned brands and helped with promotions. Happy that I could bring a smile and some orders for them.

These are my observations of what the lockdown had in store for us women especially and turning them to fruitful opportunities. The lockdown did bring in a lot of mental challenges but we sure did strive through successfully.

This post is part of #wswbloghop . I am a part of the #WSWBlogHop and I truly believe that we should support, empower each other and grow together.

Simple period care regime to take care of PCODs and irregular periods.

Do you experience any of the below?

  • Irregular periods
  • Infrequent bleeding
  • Issues in ovulation
  • Thinning hair
  • Excess facial and body hair growth
  • Dark patches
  • Pelvic pain
  • Increase in body weight
  • Acne
  • Lipid abnormalities

If you have answered yes to most of the above symptoms, you could have PCOS/PCOD and would be necessary to check with a gynecologist to confirm the possibility.

What are PCOS and PCOD?

Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome is a common condition among women in the reproductive age group due to higher levels of androgen interfering with egg development and is transformed to cysts on the ovaries which prevents the ovaries from functioning normally.

Poly Cystic Ovarian Disorder is a collection of mature eggs not being released leading to cyst development. This is due to hormonal imbalance.

Ever since we had the pandemic in place and a lockdown being announced many of our metabolic clocks startled. Be it male or female, the majority would agree that their entire lifestyle took a jolt and would take a lot of time to recuperate back on track. Females had yet another clock that wasn’t spared by the pandemic and the associated stress meter that came into the picture.

Sudden isolation from kith and kin, no outdoors, and no helping hands for domestic chores, managing kids, and working from home skyrocketed the stress levels. Untimely meals which could be junk, no proper sleep cycle added more fuel to a burning medical problem amongst women. Would you believe that there have been reports that at least 25% of women in the country have been experiencing irregularities in periods?

Stress from any trigger be it at the office, travel, or at home could have an impact on your monthly cycle. The so-called new reality hit the female population hard that Doctors reported more cases of disrupted menstrual cycles which were either irregular cycles or severe menstrual cramps of varying intensities.

A no-show at the end of the month brought out smiles to many but brought trouble to the others. The fear of getting infected and the inability to venture to hospitals to get the irregularities checked worsened the condition for many.

Doctors reported that many patients who had PCOD under control had their conditions jumping over the wall due to lockdown stress. Binge eating, no physical activity, and stress have been attributed to have caused the major malfunction.

Doctors have also mentioned that increased levels of cortisol (stress hormone) were messing up the monthly cycles in women when tests were taken. A regular mealtime with nutritious food, physical activity, and a good sleep cycle could help keep the condition in check. More importantly, finding ways to relieve stress and maintaining good menstrual health is a must for women.

Though PCOD and PCOS cannot be completely cured, you could keep them at controlled levels so that they do not bring in complications.

You could bring in tremendous changes by inculcating the below habits.

11 habits to control PCOS and PCOD

  • Keep a check on your weight.
  • Addressing triggers of stress be it a human or a situation.
  • No junk food.
  • Being sure of the food portions, eating only when you are hungry, and not skipping meals in between to end up binge eating.
  • No desserts which include sweets, chocolates, or bakery items.
  • Limiting intake of wheat, dairy, and minimizing simple carbs.
  • Not ignoring an irregular period.
  • Increasing intake of fiber and bitter foods.
  • A good amount of physical exercise.
  • Good sleep cycle.
  • Leading a slow and joyful life.

I also came across a period care kit that I would love to share with you here.

Deal PCOS and PCOD with Namyaa Period Care

Namyaa natural care’s newest launch is their period care range. Comprising of three products under the name of Namyaa period care the products help in treating the root cause and aid in keeping the hormone level in balance.

Namyaa Aarthava Kshaya for PCOD and PCOS – These are tablets that are 60 in number packaged in a bottle. Prepared by following the Ayurvedic principles of Stree Roga Chikitsa.
The product claims to address the root cause of PCOD and PCOS, helps in restoring hormonal balance, and aids in timely ovulation. The product has no chemicals, is prepared by using all-natural ayurvedic ingredients, and hence safe to consume.

Namyaa anartava kshaya

Price: Rs.399 for a bottle of 60 tablets

Namyaa Anartava – For delayed and irregular periods – An exclusive syrup that treats irregular periods. The product claims to be a permanent solution for delayed periods and help maintain a regular menstrual cycle. Not only regularize the monthly cycle but helps restore a proper balance of hormone and thereby eliminating toxins for blood purification.

Namyaa anartava

Price: Rs.449 for a 500ml syrup bottle

Namyaa Shwetkanika for white discharge– A pack of 60 tablets that help in controlling white discharge. Instructed to be taken twice post breakfast and dinner for 90 days to achieve the results. Also helps in balancing hormone and eliminating toxins.

Namyaa shwetkanika

Price: Rs.399 for a bottle of 60 tablets.

All the above three products part of Namyaa period care are available on the brand website, amazon, and Flipkart.

Next time you have irregular periods don’t ignore and take care of your health. Remember that you are important to run the show. And a no-show could ruin things for you.

Keep regular, be healthy. Happy periods!

Lipsmacking Mint peas pulao , sweet potato sticks

Mint peas pulao

We all love pulao. Though it is mildly flavoured compared to its counterpart biryani this dish sure does top it to favourite food lists of many especially the vegetarians and people who prefer mild flavours.

The mint peas pulao is actually a variation of my mint rice with cooked peas being an additional ingredient.

Cooking is all about experimenting. I love adding in new ingredients to existing dishes. When you succeed you have a brand new dish. Voila !!

At the same time you need to be careful while experimenting. The ingredient that you chose to add or substitute shouldn’t overpower and spoil the dish on the whole.

For the same mint rice, I cannot add peanuts . But I can alternate the peas or chhole or chickpeas. So experiment but know how and what.

This mint pulao is made with seeraga samba rice variant. The grains are much shorter but the aroma and flavours are to die for. Also you would require more quantity of rice than basmati because of the size.

Mint pulao recipe

Ingredients

To grind

  • Mint leaves 1 cup
  • Chilli -2 long
  • Poppy seed -1 tbsp
  • Small onions-3-4
  • Ginger -1′ piece
  • Garlic – 2 pods
  • Cinnamon -1′ stick
  • Cloves -2
  • Elaichi-1
  • Star anise -1
  • Bay leaf-1
  • Coconut shredded- 2 tbsp

The whole spices must be soaked in hot water for about 15 mins before being grounded.

  • Seeraga samba rice -1 cup (200 GM’s)
  • Oil as required
  • Green peas -100 GM’s
  • Salt as required
  • Ghee – 2 tbsp
  • One potato boiled and cubed

Method

  • Soak the rice for 30 mins.
  • Grind the paste and keep ready.
  • In a cooker add ghee and oil.
  • Add in the ground paste , green peas and cubed potato.
  • Add little salt, stir and cook for 5 mins until raw smell goes off.
  • Add soaked rice mix.
  • For 1 cup of rice add 1 cup of water.
  • Adjust salt and cook for 1 Whistle.
  • Cook in simmer for 3 mins and turn off.
  • Release pressure, fluff with fork and add ghee.
  • Mix ghee and serve hot with raitha.

Sweet potato sticks

An absolutely perfect side for mint peas pulao. This can be made spicy or just mild depending on your need. This is also a healthy snacking option. Did you know that this can also be offered as snack post 9 months for baby.

Ingredients

  • Sweet potato -3
  • Salt as required
  • Oil for shallow frying
  • Chill powder -2 tbsp
  • Cumin powder -1 tbsp
  • Chat masala-1 tbsp
  • Corn flour to coat the sticks

Method

  • Boil the sweet potato for one whistle.
  • Peel skin and cut into sticks or strips
  • They would be damp so quickly add in corn flour and the spice excluding chat masala.
  • Leave aside for about ten minutes.
  • Heat oil in a pan
  • Add the sticks and fry till golden brown.
  • Take out cool and add chat masala

Lipsmacking sweet potato sticks is ready to be eaten with mint peas pulao or even as snack.

You could also try the same recipe with raw banana, yam and potato. Like I said substitute and play. I’m sure you will definitely keep this recipe safer. Kids will definitely bug you for this snack.

On a healthier note, you could choose to bake the sticks instead of frying them.

I’m taking my blog to the next level with Blogchatter’s #MyFriendAlexa.