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In this issue
- Time Restricted Eating
- Hairfall and Hair loss
- Toolkit to get better at making decisions
- Exercise of the week – Candle stick
- 100 Day Challenge
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I am going on a 10 day holiday into nature. Will be mostly offline. So I will be skipping the next issue. It will be ten days of photography and deep learning. Target to finish couple of books and also advance with my course on Sleep, Recovery and Stress management.
All of nutrition science is based on two experiments. The first proved the notion of calorie restriction: If we eat less,we’ll lose weight and achieve better health. This experiment was done in the early part of the 20th century, and ever since, people have been counting calories.The second experiment supports the notion of a “healthy diet.” In this experiment, a pair of genetically identical mice were fed two different diets, one with a healthy balance of carbohydrates, simple sugars, proteins, and fats, and one high in fat and sugar. After a few weeks the mice eating the high-fat/high-sugar diet became obese, almost diabetic, and had high levels of fat in their blood and dangerous levels of cholesterol. This finding drives home the notion that the quality of your food—its nutritional content—matters significantly when it comes to your health. There are now more than 11000 studies on similar lines.These researches drives our current “eat this, don’t eat that” thinking. Yet none of this research has proved conclusively that one type of food is best for everyone.It turns out that what’s best for you is a balanced combination of various macronutrients and micronutrients in quantities that are large enough to keep you satisfied but not gain weight.But the definition of what is “balanced” is highly contested, as what is optimum for an athlete, an expectant mother, a teenager, a bodybuilder, and a patient with diabetes may be vastly different. Dr Satchin Panda, has done a wonderful study establishing the idea that it’s not only how much we eat and what we eat, but when we eat that matters,for long-term positive health outcomes.
Quoting him : “We took pairs of genetically identical mice born to the same parents and raised in the same home and gave one group access to a high fat-diet whenever they wanted. The other group had the same amount of food, but they had to eat all their food within an 8-hour window. The mice with the smaller food window quickly learned to eat the same number of calories as the mice that had access to food all the time. In other words, mice on a 24-7 schedule ate small meals spread throughout the day and night, while mice on an 8-hour schedule ate the same number of calories, just in larger meals within the 8 hours. What’s more, over the first 12 weeks of the study, when the mice ate the same number of calories following the same high-fat/high-sugar diet that in 11,000 other publications had been shown to cause severe metabolic diseases, but within an 8-hour window, they were completely protected from the diseases normally seen with a poor diet. The time-restricted eating mice didn’t gain excess weight, and they had normal blood sugar and normal cholesterol levels. We believe that a shortened feeding period provides the digestive system the right amount of time to perform its function uninterrupted by a new influx of food, and enough time to repair and rejuvenate, supporting the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. This restricted feeding period is in alignment with the mice’s natural circadian code, which is why they lost weight and stayed healthier. The benefits continued week after week for an entire year (which is like several years of human life) as long as the mice stayed on the new eating schedule. In fact, the health benefits were far greater than the effect of a drug to treat the same condition. Remember, we did not change the diet and we did not reduce their calories. Timing made the magic.”
We have seen similar results in human studies. For instance, a group of Harvard scientists and Spanish weight-loss nutritionists found that individuals who spread their calories over a long period of time—meaning they eat the same number of calories but eat later into the night—did not lose much weight. However, people who ate bigger meals during the day and refrained from eating at night actually lost a substantial amount of weight. This means that regardless of which kind of calorie-restricting diet you follow, when you eat is more important than what type of food you eat.
Rules that you should follow
- don’t consume any calories for at least 12 hours
- during fasting drink liquids which contain 0 calories like black coffee or green tea
- eat 3 to 4 meals during your feeding window
- make sure that you deliver a sufficient amount of protein
- eat enough of carbohydrates and fat to provide energy
- do not eat large portions and do not indulge in unhealthy options
It is sustainable and Easy. You will definitely lose weight. Done right it will help you gain muscle mass also. It will help reduce fat. It will help reduce inflammation. Results are promising and position Intermittent Fasting as a part of a healthy lifestyle and foundation for longevity. Go try it. Share your experience
by Dr Divya Sharma
We often wonder what exactly is the reason for all hair issues. Well the answer is more like a jigsaw puzzle. Hair fall is multifactorial and perhaps is caused by various reasons that we will discuss in this new article.
Hair is an engineering marvel of nature
Hair is perhaps one of the few appendages in our body which possess a unique ability to regrow throughout life due to stem cells located in the bed of each hair follicle. That germ which leads to sprouting of hair is known as Dermal papilla. It is surrounded by blood vessels which are the highway connecting nutrient supply to the hair. It is anchored by a small muscle and is surrounded by our fat cells, hormonal receptors. In short, hair is an engineering marvel of nature. One can make out the very reasons why Hair is so resonant of our internal surroundings and is closely impacted by them.
How are hair fall and hair loss different?
The difference between hair fall and hair loss is that the former is temporary shedding which may be self-limiting and the latter is perhaps permanent ageing of the follicle.
Hair cycle simplified
We all know that hair has three stages of growth. The growth phase also known as anagen generally lasts on an average of 2 to 3 years. The majority of our hair is in this phase. This is followed by Catagen lasting for one month and then the hair rests in follicles known as telogen phase. On an average , 20 to 30 % of hair is in the resting phase. This is followed by the exit of old hair and entry into another growth phase.
What are the factors which can impact the hair cycle?
Hair growth cycle is a very dynamic process and requires a lot of nutritional support and is sensitive to slightest changes inside the body. Nutritional deficiencies like Vitamin B12 , Vitamin D and iron deficiency can compromise the growth phase and lead to shifting of the hair to telogen phase in a higher proportion. This is known as telogen effluvium and is responsible for the excessive shedding of hair in clumps or hair fall. Any illness, surgery or stress can trigger telogen effluvium. If it continues to happen for many months to years, it leads to reduction of hair volume and commonly people refer to it as reduction in ponytail size or visible spaces in the temple areas for women.
Hormonal changes, especially increased activity of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) or reduced activity of aromatase enzyme in women can lead to progressive miniaturisation of hair follicles known as Androgenetic alopecia. It leads to receding hairline and bald patches. Many factors like scalp microinflammation and loss of anchorage of hair follicles can lead to miniaturisation.
Why DHT leads to miniaturisation largely lies unanswered but there is a lot of evidence incriminating obesity, dyslipidemia , lack of sleep and disruption of circadian rhythm responsible for the process of balding.
Diet and everyday lifestyle is perhaps the only amenable tool for hair health. It has also been seen as a predictor of cardiovascular health.
The counterpart of metabolic syndrome in women known as PCOS or polycystic ovarian syndrome also reduces the growth signals required for initiation of hair growth. Increased insulin levels, abnormal hormonal profiles discourage hair health.
It is high time to put away the myths like hair oil and shampoos making a major impact on hair growth.
We will discuss the practical tips and tricks to treat both conditions in the next issue.
Dr Divya Sharma is a renowned dermatologist and trichologist based out of Bengaluru. She is on the scientific committee of various national regional dermatology congresses and is often invited as faculty to Indian Academy of Dermatologists, Venerologists and leprologists (IADVL), Association of cutaneous surgeons of India (ACSICON) national conferences. A member of IADVL special interest group (SIG) -Aesthetics. She runs her own practice Dr Divya’s Skin and Hair solutions at Bengaluru
You can find her on twitter @divya_sharmaMD
Life is a neverending series of decisions. Some of these decisions bear little weight on the rest of your life, but others can have huge consequences. The fact is, we make a ton of choices a day, from the micro (what should I eat today?) to the life-changing (do I start this enterprise?). The sheer number of decisions that require attention can be taxing. Decision-making is made harder when we have more choices, and that can feel overwhelming. Some tools to help in decision making
- Zero in to what you want. Without clear objectives for what you want to achieve with a decision, you might focus on the wrong things. Even if its small decisions. Like if going out for dinner with friends, and if you want to have some meaningful conversation you should choose a quieter restaurant. This will work in bigger life decisions. For example, when weighing multiple job offers, think about what aspects of a new job would make your life better, aside from salary: work-life balance, commute time, benefits.
- Don’t waste too much time on small decisions. What to make for lunch or what to wear in the morning or who to have drinks with — it’s reasonable to not worry about this stuff. Don’t waste your energy on these things. Also don’t worry about the quality of these decisions.
- Get opinion for the big stuff. Ask people who have experienced similar things.Get a second, third or fourth opinion. Don’t make major decisions in a vacuum.
- Feelings shape our thinking. Be mindful of your emotions. Its not a good idea to make decisions when in an emotionally fluctuating state. Like taking a decision after a fight with parter. Better to let things settle and then decide. Getting your emotion out by journaling is a great way to keep emotional decision making in check
- Make a pros and cons list. Prioritise decisions with respect to goals. For example, when deciding whether to skip a friend’s upcoming wedding due to the high cost of attending multiple nuptials in a year, a pros and cons list would push you to think about how highly you value this friendship versus your goal of putting more money into savings.
by Nishant Mandal
Nishant Mandal is a certified Personal trainer/Online fitness coach based out of Delhi NCR. He is ACE-CPT, Crossfit L-1, PN-L1 certified and Calisthenics enthusiast, Deadlift Junkie, Movement & Mobility expertise Getting people to move and better themselves since 2010 through individualised and challenging routines but not much than what one can’t handle. You can connect with him at
You can find him on Twitter handle @NishantPTrainer
Leadership Board – As per audited data as on 17th Feb 2022. Congrats to Top 50 in both categories
Top 50 Age group below 40
Top 40 Age group 40 and above
Note: Size of the font is not an indicator of any ranking. Step counts when entered can dramatically alter the rankings.
For the next wild card challenge, get ready to test your body’s balance and earn a few bonus points while having fun. Flamingo Balance Test – your ability to balance successfully on a single leg and assesses strength of the leg, pelvic, trunk muscles as well as static balance. The Challenge will be open from Sunday, February 20th to Saturday, February 26th.
Video Demo – https://youtu.be/BhTwZj2ikQQ
How to perform test
- Stand on any flat surface as shown in the video.
- Keep balance by holding someone or something, if required, to start.
- While balancing on the preferred leg, the free leg is flexed at the knee and the foot of this leg held closed to the buttocks
- Start the timer as you leave the support, in case u took, to start
- Pause the stop watch each time you lose balance
- Resume again until you lose balance.
- Count the number of falls in 30 seconds.
- If there are more than four falls you don’t qualify for any point.
- Points you can earn in 30 seconds of Flamingo Balance Test:
- No fall – 20 points
- One fall – 15 points
- Two falls – 10 points
- Three falls – 5 points
10. Upload the video like last time on your social media . Use #AdmireYourself and #WildCard2. After posting on social media, copy the link of the post, login to the activity dashboard and choose relevant Flamingo Balance (depending on number of falls) and paste the link of your post about balance test. In case, if you do not have any social media handle, you can upload the 30 second balance video on the activity dashboard (file size limit:5MB). Admins have the right to reject the entry in case if the rules are not followed.
FITstar of the week – Kishore Chinta
Former IAF fighter pilot, Kishore Chinta, who now flies business jets, wears a motley hat. He is an air crash survivor, a family man to the core, adrenaline junky and a gourmet who loves his single malt. The captain feels his participation in 100Day Challenge last year helped him overcome the covid delta variant after effects.
His fitness agenda includes getting off the diabetes and asthma meds and feel healthy naturally. All set to participate in 100 day challenge 2.0, Capt. Chinta wants to resume his fitness regime and get back on track. For those who are still struggling to get into a fitness discipline. Captain Chinta has succinct mantra- “Just make a start and keep pushing yourself to do a little better than yesterday.”