Sunday, 28 May 2017

Ramadan Kareem

The holy month of Ramadan has just started. According to Islamic belief, it commemorates the first revelation of the holy Koran to Prophet Muhammad.

Muslims fast during this month...from sunrise to sunset... so as to equalize everyone before themselves and before God. The Iftar meal is a celebration every evening...with family, friends and neighbours.

The pre-sunrise (sahour) and post sunset (iftar) meals comprise of dates, nuts, dried fruits, fresh fruits, sherbet, salad veggies, halal meats, haleem, assorted kebabs, different types of breads and a wide array of sweets.

Fasting can be good for health provide excess food...esp fried, is not consumed during iftar and sahour. The human body has certain regulatory mechanisms that get activated during periods of fasting. If you are fasting during this month and maintain a balanced diet you will continue to stay active and healthy. Health problems arise during this month only if food is consumed in excess thereby making the diet unbalanced...or if sleep is not sufficient. This could lead to dips in blood sugar levels and dips in blood pressure during the day...and the reverse happening once the fast is broken each night.

Some simple guidelines to stay healthy during this holy month of Ramadan:

  • Eat a light sahour (pre sunrise) meal comprising of freah fruits, milk, oats, cereal, bread etc
  • Eat sufficient amounts of carbohydrate and fiber-rich foods which provide vitamin B and keep you full.
  • Eat adequate amounts of raw veggies and fresh fruits to provide the vitamins and minerals needed by your body.
  • Drink water to hydrate your body from sunset till sunrise... avoid aerated beverages and caffeine which dehydrate the body.
  • Avoid fried foods and spicy do not want a spike in your cholesterol levels post fasting...nor do you want to suffer from hyperacidity through the day.

Do some light form of exercise like stretching or walking.

As-Salaam-Alekum... " May peace be upon you"

Stay blessed with good health ….always!!!

Warm regards,

Charmaine D’Souza

Sunday, 21 May 2017


Triphala is a traditional Ayurvedic herbal formulation consisting of three fruits native to the Indian subcontinent: Amalaki, Bibhitaki and Haritaki.

Benefits of Triphala:-
- Assists natural internal cleansing
- Gently maintains bowel regularity
- Nourishes and rejuvenates the tissues
- Supports healthy digestion and absorption
- Acts as a natural antioxidant

2 tbsp triphala juice is the recommended may dilute it in water and have a shot of this daily.

Stay blessed with good health ….always!!!

Warm regards,

Charmaine D’Souza

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

World Hypertension Day, 17th May 2017

Why does the doctor check your BP each time you visit him? Why is low BP or high BP such a big ndeal?

BP is a measure of the force of blood pushing against blood vessel walls. The heart pumps blood into the arteries, which carry blood throughout the body. High BP or hypertension is dangerous...a 'silent killer'.. because it makes the heart work harder to pump blood to the body and contributes to hardening of arteries, or atherosclerosis and to the development of heart failure.


  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Blurred vision
Causes of high BP:

  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Too much salt in the diet
  • Too much alcohol consumption
  • Stress
  • Old age
  • Family history of high BP
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Adrenal and thyroid issues

  • Eat foods rich in potassium like bananas, watermelon, celery , parsley, mint and coriander.
  • Eat seeds like pumpkin seeds, melon seeds, cucumber seeds and flax seeds...... unsalted !
  • Avoid salty foods and snacks including processed meats like bacon salami and ham, packaged   soups, wafers, sauces and pickles.
  • Relax, exercise, whatever it takes to get your stress levels down.

" One way to get high blood pressure is to go mountain climbing over molehills " - Earl Wilson.

Stay blessed with good health ….always!!!

Warm regards,

Charmaine D’Souza

Monday, 8 May 2017

Dried plums (Prunes)

Prunes…what immediately comes to mind is images of old people eating them at bedtime to prevent constipation!!! So the name was changed to dried plum to encourage people of all ages to incorporate them in their daily diet and derive their antioxidant benefits. Research now shows that these dried plums have phytoestrogens that strengthen bones and help treat osteoporosis.

The health benefits of dried plums (prunes) and dried plum (prune) juice:

  • Dried plums are an excellent source of energy. Since they are rich in fiber and fruit sugars- fructose and sorbitol, they do not cause a spike in blood sugars. In fact, their soluble fibre content helps stabilise blood sugar levels.
  • Their high sugar content allows them to be dried without fermention…thereby preventing gas and acidity.
  • Their high potassium content helps regularise blood pressure, heart rhythm, muscle contractions and nerve impulses. It also helps prevent cramps. 
  • They are rich in two phytonutrients - neochlorogenic and chlorogenic acid which help prevent cellular damage.
  • Dried plums and their juice help to prevent high blood pressure.
  • They also help prevent atherosclerosis -the narrowing of arteries due to a build-up of plaque, leading to strokes and heart attacks.
  • The mineral boron, found in plenty in dried plums, helps to build strong bones and prevent bone loss, to strengthen muscles and improve muscle coordination and also to improve mental agility.
  • They are a good source of iron and vitamin C which is needed to convert this iron into a highly absorbable form. This combination prevents anemia.
  • Their high fiber content helps in improving digestion, regularising bowel movement and preventing piles and haemorrhoids.
  • The juice of dried plums is a good laxative. Simply boil 5 of them in a litre of water. When cool, blend well and drink this through the day. Works well with young children and older people too.
  • This juice also helps prevent urinary incontinence and improves bladder function.
  • They are a great snack food because they help you stay full for a longer period of time…preventing overeating and subsequent weight gain.

A Word of Caution:

If you are diabetic or have ulcerative colitis or IBS then please use dried plums judiciously.

Stay blessed with good health ….always!!!

Warm regards,

Charmaine D’Souza