Nutrition: During Covid and Beyond

Amrita, 27, was browsing through her local grocery store website when an ad popped up: a superfood with a name she couldn’t pronounce; but, after reading about how it boosts the immune system, she bought it anyway. Her husband, a doctor, had tried to tell her time and again that a healthy body needs only what is already in the kitchen, and some everyday movement. But, oh, Covid-19!

Have you noticed that people have suddenly started focussing on their health? Are you one of them, too?

Dr. Amita Singh, a consultant in nutrition and dietetics, was in talk with Club Literati on Tuesday, September 29th, in an open discussion titled “Nutrition: During Covid and Beyond”, when certain oft-pondered-upon questions on health and healthiness were raised. Singh busted myths and misconceptions regarding diet and dieting that bother even the best of us.

Singh is associated with many organizations and institutions that focus on overall health, including the UNICEF, Health Department of Madhya Pradesh, and Sports Academy. Singh is a cancer survivor herself, and chose her profession because of her desire to contribute towards a healthier society.
She explained that, instead of going far off with our food choices, especially now, the best options are always to eat our local produce and swap processed foods for wholesome, healthier picks.
Singh clarified the latest guidelines laid down by the Indian Nutrition Institute that limit the calorific intake of women to 1600 calories, instead of the 1800 set in the past. To spread awareness and curb obesity, the mother of all diseases, the Nutrition Week has now been extended to a full month.

Talking about the root of ill-health among Indians, she explained how most Indians are protein-deficient. When asked about the ways in which this could be resolved, Singh gave solutions as simple as consuming protein-rich foods, milk and dairy on a regular basis. Focus on Vitamin B12, Vitamin C and Vitamin D was also required during the pandemic and otherwise, Singh said.
When it came to the infamous Kaada, she took a stand against excessive indulgence in herbs and spices, because they have the potential to cause gastrointestinal ulcers.

Dr. Singh a consultant medical dietician.

Some of the questions asked by the audience that Singh addressed were:

  1. Is it all right to have fruits along with cereal?
    I don’t see why not! There is no scientific study which says that consuming fruits along with cereal can be problematic.
  2. I am diabetic. Can I eat rice with this condition?
    Definitely! A bowl of rice with pulses is ideal for a day. Dal or pulses should ideally be consumed twice a day for a balanced diet.
  3. Are cornflakes needful?
    Occasional consumption of cornflakes is adviced because they have extremely high levels of sodium. Dalia, or cracked wheat, is a better option.

The session was moderated by Sulabha Dixit, a wellness expert and yoga practitioner. Dixit quoted, “Eighty percent of our health is what we eat”.

Sulabha Dixit is a Yoga teacher and a wellness expert.

When asked about the non-dietary aspects of health, the experts advocated undaunted attention towards lifestyle, hydration and exercise.

(We hope you found these tips helpful and we’d love to hear what you think about them! Did we miss something? Do you have any suggestions for our next meeting? Let us know in the comments or send us an email at:

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