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ASK KOMAL: How do I stop binge-eating?

December 04, 2020 11:39 IST
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To avoid binge eating, you need to control your mind and focus on your goal, says Komal Jethmalani.

Binge eating

IMAGE: Kindly note that this image has been used for representative purposes only. Photograph: Kind courtesy Athena/

Dear readers, are you worried about your health as we battle COVID-19?

Concerned about what you and your family are eating as you cope with staying indoors?

Struggling with weight gain?

Or are you facing other heath issues like diabetes, blood pressure, joint pain or heart problems?

Please mail your questions to Nutritionist Komal Jethmalani for her advice.

Hi Komal
My height is 5 feet 2 inches, weight 75 kgs, age 38 years, female, with PCOD.
Please suggest how to lose weight.
Smita Sengupta 

Women with PCOD have a low metabolic rate due to hormonal imbalances. Due to this, weight gain is common in such cases.

To increase the metabolic rate, have small frequent meals during the day.

Focus on high fibre, low fat and carb foods.

Avoid high fat and sugar foods, refined and packaged products, refined food items, etc.

Incorporate an exercise schedule which includes cardio and weight training. 


Hi Komal
My name is Prabodh.
My height: 5'7"
Weight 75 kg
Age: 42 years
I was weighing 82 kg seven months back.
I started 50 minutes of jogging six days in week with two meals (lunch and dinner) in a day.
This regime helped me reduce seven kg of weight but there's no significant reduction in belly fat.
I want to reduce my tummy fat.
I am aiming to further cut down my weight by eight kg in next 3-4 months.
Please suggest what diet and workout regime I should follow to achieve my target weight.
I am a pure vegetarian.

To reduce weight, you have probably focused on lowering your calorie requirements more than the minimum.

When total calorie and protein intake is reduced, it results in loss of lean mass.

Cardio activities like jogging are effective in fat loss but without proper nutrition will result in overall loss of lean mass. Thus, the quick loss of seven kgs.

Unfortunately, as minimum nutrition has been used as a means to lower weight, there will be a bounce back of the same once you start eating well.

You must consume the minimum requirement of all macro and micro nutrients for sustenance and healthy fat loss.

Avoid high fat and carb foods to cut excess calories.

Have high fibre and protein foods like whole grain cereals, lentils, fruits and vegetables, nuts, etc.

Weight and strength training is excellent for body toning and reducing fat percentage in specific body parts like the tummy.

Hello there.
My name is Harish and I am 46 years old.
I am a vegetarian but I eat eggs once a week.
Problem is that I am overweight by about 15 kilos. My height is 5ft 11 inches.
I do go out in morning and do 30 minutes walking/jogging.
However I am not clear what should be my food intake and how to avoid binge eating.
I have a craving for sweets and need to cut it down drastically.
How do I get out of this craving mode?

Weight loss should be achieved by having adequate nutrition in terms of all macro and micro nutrients.

Muscle mass should be increased by good strengthening exercises and subsequently pre- and post-workout meals.

Cardio activities like running /jogging can be incorporated for fat loss as well.

Avoid high fat and sugar foods, soft/hards drinks, juices, fast and packaged foods, etc.

Include good protein and fibre foods like whole grain cereals, legumes, nuts, fruits, vegetables, etc.

To avoid binge eating, you need to control your mind and focus on your goal.

For the sweet crave, satisfy the urge with dates, jaggery, raisins, etc.

I have a normal Indian diet, vegetarian. I eat fruits too.
My sleep is okay.
I am 44 years old, female, height 5’3”, weight 80 kgs.
In the last few months, I have been losing lots of hair. I don’t know why. I am very worried.
What I can I eat to improve hair growth?
Sarika Nagnani

Eating healthy is the answer to stay fit.

Check if you are having all essential nutrients adequately.

Deficiencies in any nutrient, like protein and B complex, Vitamin D, and other essential micro nutrients may be the cause of hair fall.

Stress is another causative factor for hair fall. De-stress yourself by doing yoga or meditation.

Medication or hormonal imbalances can also be causative factors.

Eat healthy foods rich in protein, vitamins and minerals like eggs, milk and milk products, nuts, fruits and vegetables.

Dear Komal
Our office has opened and I am travelling by public transport to work.
I am diabetic, have cholesterol and on medication for both.
I am doing sanitising and wearing mask. It is impossible to do social distancing.
I am the sole earner for my family and I don’t want to catch COVID.
How can I do to improve immunity?
My height: 5’7”; weight: 101 kg; age 48 years.
Thank you.
Kapil Talwar

Your profile indicates that you are overweight.

To increase immunity, focus on losing fat percentage by refraining from high fat and sugar food, juices, hard or soft drinks, fast foods etc.

You must get your blood sugar levels under control as uncontrolled diabetes is a prime reason of low immunity.

Avoid refined food products and sweets and incorporate a daily exercise schedule.

Eat high fibre foods to increase gut health and reduce the glycaemic index.

Refrain from indulging in fried foods and oily foods to reduce your cholesterol level.

Follow a daily exercise schedule to increase metabolic rate and strength.

Komal Jethmalani is a dietician with over 25 years of experience in food, nutrition and dietetics, with an MSc in food science and nutrition.

A certified diabetes educator and lifestyle coach, specialising in diabetic, cardiovascular, weight loss and various therapeutic diets, she consults under the brand, The Diet Mantra.

And she will try and help you achieve your dietary and fitness goals through healthy lifestyle changes.

Do share your complete health details including age, weight, height and health issues if any.

Write to (Subject: Ask Komal), along with your name. You are most welcome to share your photograph as well.

This column is an advisory. Please do consult your doctor as well.

Disclaimer: All content and media herein is written and published online for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It should not be relied on as your only source for advice.

Please always seek the guidance of your doctor or a qualified health professional with any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition. Do not ever disregard the advice of a medical professional, or delay in seeking it because of something you have read herein.

If you believe you may have a medical or mental health emergency, please call your doctor, go to the nearest hospital, or call emergency services or emergency helplines immediately. If you choose to rely on any information provided herein, you do so solely at your own risk.

Opinions expressed herein cannot necessarily provide advice to fit the exact specifics of the issues of the person requesting advice.

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