9 #meals a day cut #cholesterol, #flab

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Suggesting that eating little and often is healthier for us, experts have said that we should eat as many as nine meals every day.

They say this may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and even encourage weight loss, theDaily Mail reported.

“Splitting food intake so we eat many times a day will have metabolic benefits over and above the same food consumed in a small number of meals,” the paper quoted Dr Susan Jebb, head of the Medical Research Council’s Human Nutrition Research Unit, as saying.

In one of the latest studies, scientists from Imperial College, London, compared the diets of more than 2,000 people from the UK, Japan, China and the U.S.

While they all had the same calorie intake and food, half the participants ate fewer than six times a day, while the remainder ate more than six times.

Results show the first group had a significantly higher systolic blood pressure — the pressure that blood exerts on vessels while the heart is beating — compared with the more frequent eaters. They were also significantly heavier.

Another research from the University of Athens, based on more than 2,000 children aged nine to 13, found those who ate five times a day were 32.6 per cent less likely to have high levels of bad cholesterol than those who ate fewer meals.

Meanwhile, eating at least four small meals a day — a ‘nibbling’ diet, as researchers called it — sped up metabolism and lowered the risk of obesity, according to a Maastricht University study.

It’s not clear why eating more often has these benefits, but one theory is that frequent meals prevent a high influx of fatty acids — compounds that are released from foods and can lead to a build-up of fats in the arteries, and also contribute to high cholesterol levels.

The build-up can also narrow the blood vessels, leading to high blood pressure.

Eating more frequently during the day means there are no sudden spikes of fatty acids, enabling the body to deal with the intake more effectively.

Eating more frequently may boost energy levels, suggests a study from the University Of Montana.

When forest firefighters were given standard lunches or ration ‘grazing’ packs designed to be eaten over a long period of time, those who had grazing packs did 25 per cent more work than the lunchbox workers.

So how is this approach different from just adding a snack between meals? The regularity of the smaller meals may be just as important as the quantity, say experts.

However, eating frequent meals is not an excuse to eat more, said Dr Susan Jebb, and it’s important that calorie intake is tightly controlled if people are going to eat as many as six or nine meals a day.

11 #tricks that’ll change your #shape

11 doable diet tips that’ll take you to slimming success in the long run!

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Slimming doesn’t have to mean making dramatic changes to your lifestyle overnight. In fact, small — often apparent — changes added together can make a big difference to your weight loss. Follow these top tips for the tiny steps that can lead to long-term success.

1. Get active…one step at a time
You don’t have to shell out on signing up for an expensive gym membership or a personal trainer. Try becoming more active one step at a time and slowly increase the amount you do each day and week.

2. Swap the car for a walk on short journeys
Whether it’s walking the kids to school or parking a little further away from work and walking the difference, finding small, manageable ways to build activity into your everyday life will make it easier to keep up your fitness regime.

3. Get into a new ‘groove’
Successful long-term weight loss isn’t only about eating differently, it’s about developing healthy new habits that you can keep up for life. Often they become so ingrained that you don’t even know you are doing them. This is called getting into the new ‘groove’.

4. Swap thinking about end goal for small targets
Losing weight is a lifestyle change, not a race. Thinking about your end goal can be daunting, especially if you’ve got a lot of weight to lose, so break your weight loss down into more manageable targets.

This could be how much you want to lose each week or thinking about your weight loss one kilo at a time. You will soon look back and realise just how far you’ve come.

5. Swap impromptu eating for planned meals
When you don’t have anything in the fridge, the cupboards are bare and you are starving hungry, it’s easy to be tempted by speedy convenience foods. Planning your meals ahead and even cooking in advance keeps you in control and you don’t waste food or money. Making a list before hitting the supermarket is a great idea, too, so you won’t be tempted by those sneaky offers at the end of the aisles.

6. Swap going it alone for support
Research shows that slimmers who get support by joining a group of like-minded slimmers are more likely to be successful than those who go it alone.

7. Swap separate meals for healthy family food
When we embark on a diet, we often expect to have to eat differently to the rest of our family, and the thought of having to force down a salad while everyone enjoys their favourite meal can be off-putting to say the least.

But by making small changes to the way you cook your food, you can enjoy all your family favourites, from curry to spaghetti bolognese, and everyone will benefit from your new healthy recipes.

8. Swap TV eating for sitting around the table
When you’re distracted while eating, it’s easy to eat beyond feeling satisfied because you don’t notice the signs that you are feeling full as quickly. Sitting with your family will also mean everyone looks forward to mealtimes.

9. Swap feeling envious for motivation
Envying someone else’s success can be excruciating, but wanting what someone else has can also be very motivating. Keep positive by thinking, “what first step can I take to get what this person has? How can I learn from them?” Maybe, even ask for their help and support.

Did you know the year after Roger Bannister broke the fourminute mile barrier for the first time, 37 other people did it, too?

10. Swap self-doubt for self-belief
We can all be our own worst critics and it’s easy to focus on our failings. But by noticing our successes and being kind to ourselves, we can believe in ourselves and achieve more. So try this — instead of beating yourself up when something doesn’t quite work out the way you would have liked, talk to yourself in the way you would a close friend, with care and reassurance.

11. Swap takeaways for fake-aways
Whether it’s Chinese, Indian or fish and chips, slimming down doesn’t have to see you go without your favourite takeaways. Instead of ordering in, cook your own healthy versions of your favourite dishes, they’ll be lighter on your waistline and your bank balance.

Top 20 #healthy #Indian #dishes

The first words that come to mind when one thinks of Indian food are: Hot, spicy, oily, rich, fatty and creamy.

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Indian food, though hugely popular, is highly misunderstood. In fact, Indian food includes an array of healthy spices, due to which the dishes are cooked in a multitude of ways that help retain their nutrients. Indian food includes carbohydrates, proteins, fats, all the elements to make a balanced diet.

Find out which Indian dishes will help you maintain your waistline, with our list of top 20 healthy Indian dishes

Buttermilk

Despite the fact that, buttermilk suggests that it is high in fat; buttermilk generally holds no butter and is actually low in fat.

Buttermilk made from low-fat milk contains approximately 100 calories and 2gms fat per cup.

Sambar dal

This is a solid stew made with chickpeas, legumes, and a variety of spices.

One serving includes approximately 50 calories, 2.6gms carbohydrates, 15.0gms protein, and 1.8gms fat.

Tandoori chicken

It is marinated in yogurt and seasoned in tandoori masala, and a combination of various spices.

One entire leg piece includes approximately 260 calories, 13.0gms fat, 5.0gms carbohydrates and 30.5gms protein.

Rajma

Rajma is a North Indian dish made of red kidney beans in thick gravy with lots of spices and usually served with rice and roti.

One serving of 114gms cup consists of approximately 120 calories and 5gms proteins.

Hara bhara kabab

The crispy hara bhara kabab is a vegetarian kabab, a recipe full of aromatic spices, healthy ingredients and an marvelous taste.

Per serving includes approximately 73 calories and 2gms protein.

Arhar dal

A dish made with beans. The nutritional content of one serving is approximately 53 calories, 1.2gms fat, 8.0gms carbs, and 2.8gms protein.

Bhindi ki subji

This simple dish tastes great with hot chapatis or parathas and there you’ve got a terrific vegetarian meal.

Servings of 50gms consists of approximately 80 calories and 5gms protein.

Sol kadhi

Sol Kadhi is a pink coloured appetizer drink from made from the Kokum fruit and Coconut Milk.

It’s also good for your stomach after a Hot and Spicy meal. One glass consists of 138 calories.

Chickpea and spinach curry

Lots of fresh spinach brings the green color to this chickpea dish, and curry livens up the flavor.

This dish is full of fiber. Per serving consist of approximately 142 calories.

Raita

A raita is a simple preparation made by adding fruits, vegetables or any other thing to beaten curds.

One serving includes approximately 60 calories.

Lobhia

Lobhia curry is a popular north-Indian dish, where the soaked and cooked black-eyed beans are boiled in tangy tomato gravy, with the right blend of spices.

One serving of medium bowl consists of approximately 198 calories.

Palak-da-Saag

Palak-da-Saag is a very famous and healthy Punjabi recipe usually served with roti or naan.

Per servings includes approximately126.2 calories and 6.3gms proteins.

Daliya

Bulgur wheat/ daliya is very light and healthy option for breakfast.

It is an excellent source of fiber that helps to maintain healthy digestive system. Whole wheat daliya consist of approximately 85 calories per 170gms servings.

Aloo palak

Stuffed with mashed potatoes, mixed with finely chopped spinach or any leafy green vegetables.

One serving of 142gms consists of almost 100 calories and 3gms proteins.

Moong bhaji

Sprouted moong bhaji is a quick, easy and healthy dish. The protein rich sprout is very health-friendly.

Per serving of moong bhaji includes approximately 125 calories and 4gms fats.

Baigan bharta

A North Indian specialty of roasted brinjals, skinned and made into a simple and exotic preparation.

Serving size of 100gms consists of approximately 102 calories and 5gms fat.

Red pumpkin bhaji

This dish tastes so good & is excellent with soft chappatis, phulkas or with any Indian bread. It goes well with rice too.

One serving includes approximately 151 calories.

Kobi chi bhaji

This is a very famous dish in Maharashtrian meals, and can be cooked in a variety of ways by adding tomato or green peas.

One serving consists of approximately 65 calories and 2.2gms protein.

Patrani machhi

Masala coated fish steamed in banana leaves. One serving consists of approximately 290.3 calories and 13.6gms total fat.

Chicken dhansak

This delicious and popular Parsi dish is made with chicken. Dhansak is traditionally served with brown rice and kachumbar salad.

Per serving includes approximately 505 calories.

(Sources : helath.india, anitavazirani)

#Foods to avoid for #high #blood #pressure

Do not panic if you have been diagnosed with High Blood Pressure. Besides regular exercise, one can control it with diet low in sodium and fat.

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So here are some of the top foods you should avoid:

1. Pickles are low calorie but they are loaded with sodium.

2. Papads are again low calorie but high in sodium.

3. French Fries provide a large dose of fat and sodium. A medium serving of fries has about 19 grams of fat and 270 mg of sodium.

4. Bacon is mostly fat. Three slices have 4.5 grams of fat and about 270mg of sodium.

5. Readymade soup may be comfort food but it has about 800 mg of sodium in one cup serving.

6. Dairy is a great source of calcium, but high fat dairy sources, like whole milk, provide more fat than you need. A one cup serving of whole milk provides eight grams of fat, five of which are saturated.

7. Alcohol consumption actively causes the blood pressure to elevate. It also damages the walls of the blood vessels, while simultaneously increases risks of further complications.

8. Donuts may be yummy, but they sure aren’t very good for your health and body. Just one donut packs in 200 calories with 12 grams of fat.

3 #veggies you should not #eat without #boiling

Regardless of what you are told often, raw isn’t always good. It is true that cooking some vegetables can destroy its nutrients but some vegetables need boiling to unleash their true nutritional value. Here they are:

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Root vegetables: Root vegetables, such as potatoes and turnips contain a lot of fiber, as well as vitamins. Choosing root vegetables with dark skins are more likely to have better health benefits. Boil them with the skins, and peel them before eating if necessary, this is a great way to help keep all of those benefits while cooking.

Asparagus: Asparagus, when steamed, will retain all of its miracle properties. This vegetable is great for protecting your heart, and your nervous system. Be careful in the steaming process, as most of the benefits can disappear with too much heat.

Broccoli: Broccoli is a commonly consumed vegetable. Recent studies have shown that this vegetable has more benefits after it has been steamed rather than in its raw form. It has properties that are great for the cells, and even considered as cancer fighting. It is a great source for vitamin C.

As told by Seema Singh, Clinical Nutritionist & HOD – Fortis Hospital, Vasant Kunj, Delhi

7 not-so-healthy #health #foods!

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No cholesterol, multigrain, no trans fat, organic, no added sugar, all natural, … these are few of the phrases that seem to shout “healthy food” from counters of many healthy food corners. But unhealthy choices often lurk among even the most healthy-seeming foods.

Salad, bran muffins, fat-free foods―they’re good for you, right? Not really. We have so many food options that confuse us about what’s healthy and what isn’t. Dietician Mansi Chatrath from Natural Health Care Clinic tells us about 7 foods you may like to cross off your “healthy foods” list.

Muesli

Many of us would pick a pack of muesli off the shelf to provide our families with a supposedly healthy breakfast. This is no surprise, as muesli is marketed to the health-conscious crowd. You may be dismayed, however, to learn that the type of muesli that you can find in most stores is actually quite bad for you as it could be packed with high contents of sugars, disguised as sugar coatings or chocolate frostings. Please be very careful and check the ingredients of your pack for its sugar content, artificial colouring, salt, fibre and fat content.

It would be a much better idea to switch to wheat/ oat flakes or make your own muesli. All you need would be oats, sunflower seeds, a small amount of dried fruits. With a serving of fat free milk, this homemade muesli will give you the fuel you need to start your day, without skyrocketing you blood sugar.

Energy Bars / Granola Bars

Like many health foods, the hype around granola is mostly marketing. The truth is far less glamorous. This sounds weird given that the term “granola” is often used to describe a healthy, active, outdoor lifestyle.

Most granola-based products or energy bars would be better described as “sugar-based” products as majority of them are very high on sugars and low on fibre. Additionally, they are rich in trans fat as well, making these energy bars even worse. Hence, we can have them once in a while as a sweet snack but it should not be made into a habit

If you have to eat granola, then choose the version that is highest in fiber and lowest in sugar. The best option, if you just have to have granola, is to sprinkle a small amount of it over a bowl of unsweetened fruit.

Prepared Salads

When you order a salad at a restaurant, you probably think that you are treating yourself to a healthy alternative and showing remarkable restraint. Lamentably, while some salads are truly good for you, most of them can be just as bad as the burger you yearned to order in the first place. What is worse, since they don’t fill you up, you’re likely to order that burger anyway.

The problem is that most popular salads may often be drowned in extra fats and calories due to the huge amounts of mayonnaise or fatty flakes of Parmesan cheese that may be added for taste. In many cases, loads of unhealthy dressings take away the health benefit of the greens.

Of course, an even better option is to make your own salad at home (using green vegetables, lean meat, delicious herbs, and a modest dressing with low fat and sugar content).

Light Yogurts

Dieters often gravitate toward the low-fat yogurt shelf in the dairy section because the promise of reduced fat content implies that these yogurts will be helpful for weight watchers and healthy eaters.

This isn’t true because the lack of fat tends to create yogurt that tastes bland. In an attempt to compensate, yogurt manufacturers often choose to heap a lot of extra sugar into their products, creating a much more palatable yogurt at the cost of selling an unhealthy snack.

The problem with light yogurt begins with the artificial sweeteners added to them, but that is not where it ends. Other problems include the addition of modified corn starches, preservatives, and artificial colors. This may leave you with the impression that plain yogurt is the best alternative, which would be partly right. Plain yogurt is preferable too light or flavored yogurt. One can add some honey or fruit to make it tasty.

Sports Drinks

One of the claims made about energy drinks or sports drinks is that they are “better than soda.” That is true, but it isn’t setting the bar very high. In truth, these drinks are high in sugar and contain a number of dyes and preservatives that have come under fire recently for their adverse health effects.

A big brand of energy drink recently said that it will remove brominated vegetable oil, a flavor and color enhancer, from its drinks after the ingredient was banned in Japan and Europe. Keep in mind, that sports drinks still contain citric acid, which can stain teeth and erode dentin. The sweeteners in these drinks have also been linked to increased risk of heart disease and stroke. Opt for water, lemon water, coffee, tea, and any other drink that is simple in terms of ingredients.

Packet soups

Now, soups come across as a very healthy alternative. The truth is that they are not so bad in comparison to some of the above , but it’s their high salt content, preservatives and low fibre content that gets them into this list. It’s best to avoid the market ones and make your own clear soups without any thickener added to them.

Fruit Juice

Controversial perhaps, but it is a part of this list for a good reason – so many people believe fruit juice is so healthy that they substitute it with whole fruits. Now it is true that fruit juice contains a lot of vitamins but it is at a great cost; most fruit juices are pumped with extra sugars. The pulp in fruit provides essential fibre which can be considered a good counterbalance to all the natural sugar contained in the fruit. So my advice to you: ditch fruit drinks and eat whole raw fruit instead.

Always remember, you are what you eat.

Reasons why you should #eat #pears

A new in vitro (test tube) study has investigated the potential probiotic benefits of a pear-enriched diet!

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Researchers at North Dakota State University studied the compounds found in two pear varieties, Bartlett and Starkrimson, in order to better understand the impact of those compounds on chronic diseases.

The results suggest fermentation of these pear cultivars further enhances their ability to control stomach related diseases involving H. pylori, the most common chronic bacterial infection in humans, without affecting beneficial bacteria with probiotic potential.

Researcher Kalidas Shetty said that bacteria is often perceived as something that causes diseases; however, the body is full of bacteria that are mostly good and added that it’s exciting to explore the potential that pears can have to balance beneficial bacterial activity in the digestive process, as gut health helps support overall health of the body.

The study found that Bartlett and Starkrimson pear varieties have compounds such as phenolics and antioxidants as well as activity that slow down enzymes related to starch and glucose metabolism, which relates to managing early stages of hyperglycemia and diabetes-induced hypertension.

Pears are among the most popular fruits in the world, and are an excellent source of fiber and a good source of vitamin C for only 100 calories per serving. One medium pear provides about 24 percent of daily fiber needs and, they are sodium-free, cholesterol-free, fat-free, and contain 190 mg of potassium.

An overall balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables, including pears, provides micronutrients, vitamins, dietary fiber, potassium, antioxidants, and more.

The study appears in Food Research International.

#Facebook working on #Truecaller rival

After trying its hand at ephemeral messaging and news reading apps, Facebook is all set to launch a phone dialler and caller ID app, called ‘Phone’ for Android users.

According to a new report by Android Police, several users have spotted a button to try and install an app named ‘Phone’ inside the Facebook Android app. The button says that the app shows information about who’s calling and automatically blocks calls from commonly blocked numbers.

The button was meant for Facebook employees using a test build as it’s labeled ‘FB-ONLY’ but it looks like the server-side element made its way to a wider set of users in error. The button returns a “no page found” error as the app install file is most likely located on Facebook’s internal servers.

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The app would rival the likes of Truecaller which offers a caller ID, reverse-lookup feature and also has a phone dialler app. Facebook already has a database of its users’ phone numbers so it won’t be difficult to collate the information.

11 Reasons Why #Smartphone #Gaming Is Actually Good For You

Smartphone gaming is soon catching on. The surprising thing is that it is not just hardcore gamers or college kids who play at length. Even aunties and old uncles in buses or trains sit engrossed for hours on end, playing some game or the other on their smartphone. However, each time you play, someone or the other invariably tells you horror stories of how you’ll spoil your eyesight, or how games are just a distraction. Lucky for you, they’re wrong. Because smartphone gaming can actually be good for you. Read on to know how!

1. Smartphone gaming improves your focus.

When you’re playing a game, sometimes you’re so engrossed in it that you don’t even take in the sounds around you. Your poor mother can keep screaming and you won’t even hear! Applied to real life, if you’re ever stuck at work with your colleagues screaming their heads off around you or sitting in class with the people around you gossiping, you can still block out their droning and continue with your task. Gaming thus, helps you build your focus and you can stick to one thing at a time.

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2. It helps better your concentration.

It need not be a Sudoku or Chess. Even games like Candy Crush, often deemed silly, can actually help you improve your concentration. How you ask? Well, while playing the game, all your attention is in the game. A single distraction might mean the difference between moving on to Level 33 or staying at Level 32. There’s just no room for distractions and it helps build your concentration.

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3. It teaches you how to plan better.

Gaming isn’t all about time pass and taking chances. Each move in a game has to be planned carefully and keeping the next step in mind. One wrong move and it could change the stakes completely! A step taken a few levels back might haunt you in the next level. Thus gaming can teach you how to plan and strategically lead your life keeping the future and past actions in mind.

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4. You learn the meaning of determination.

Can’t get through a level? What do you do? Definitely don’t give up on the game! You take a break, think up of new ways to beat the damn computer/phone and get back to it till you don’t clear the level. There are times you go and hunt for hacks online and the elation you feel when you finally beat the system is out of the world! Applied to the real world, games teach you to not quit and continue on in life. Take a break and mull over the problem, ask your friends for hacks (advice) but don’t give up.

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5. Games teach you how to be patient.

You do not always win at the first go. And with modern phone games, you generally get limited lives or chances to clear a level. The time you then wait till you stock up on lives again. You need to be patient and wait till you can play once more.

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6. Games teach you how to interact with others.

Most people complain that gaming makes you a recluse and you cannot interact well socially. That is not always true for smartphone games. There are many games that are group games and you play these in a group, meeting new people online and striking friendships. Even for games with limited lives, you can ask your friends for help. In fact, there are many community games where it is only through interaction with your friends or neighbours that you can clear levels. They are virtual friendships, we agree but sometimes these friendships can turn into real friendships too and they teach you social skills.

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7. The ups and downs in the game sometimes help you handle ups and downs of life better.

The biggest thing gaming teaches you is that it is never a smooth ride. There are always ups and downs in life. Sometimes, you get through a level or problem with no struggle and sometimes, what looks like a cakewalk takes you days to clear. Life is a lot like your games. There are good guys and bad guys, rewards and at times, surprise boosters. There’s just no easy way out.

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8. Video games sometimes make you smarter.

When you try to navigate a game, you are unconsciously thinking of strategies and planning tricks on how to clear it. The brain is not dormant but is actively being used. The strategising and planning can make you smarter in real life too and teach you how to deal with different situations differently.

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9. Gaming can actually improve your observation.

No, we aren’t talking of your spectacles numbers here, but when you are gaming, you are paying attention to multiple elements and characters on your screen. You need to observe every aspect and then react accordingly. You learn to pay attention to details and somehow become more observant even in real life. For example, in a warfare game, you cannot just look at one person or one enemy. You need to perceive the entire field area clearly and attentively. It helps you observe clearly.

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10. Your reflexes also improve.

With gaming, there’s a lot going on at once and you need to sometimes be very quick and reflexive. The way you react in a smartphone game, within milliseconds, sometimes help in real life too. You become more attuned to your surroundings and as you are more observant, in turn your reflexes and reactions improve dramatically.

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11. You learn to stay calm in the midst of a lot of confusion and take prompt decisions.

Video games and phone games prompt you to take decisions in a jiffy without lagging. And whatever decision you make, you know the onus is on you. There are no blame games and if you’re ousted, it is your own fault. You admit defeat gracefully knowing the fault is your own and try to improve the next time round.

So the next time someone questions you about your gaming addiction, you know what to say!

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Think there’s something we missed out? Let us know in the comments section below! And happy gaming!

Why a #sari is both #hot, and #cool

Indian garments like the sari, dhoti and lungi adapt beautifully to varied weather conditions, shows research!

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Only a Bollywood heroine can cavort around the Alps in a chiffon sari without losing her extremities to frostbite. But the idea may not be as ridiculous as it seems.

The sari, says fresh research, can alternately cool and warm a body simply in the way it is draped.

Dr Madhavi Indraganti, a Hyderabad-bred architect and scholar who teaches at the Prince Sultan University in Riyadh, has established that the sari is all-weather wear in a paper published in a peer-reviewed journal Architectural Science Review.

The nub of it is: you can go from summer to winter in the same sari, and you’ll have all-round comfort just by making small changes with the pallu and a few add-on accessories. And it is not just the sari that is weather-versatile Indian wear.The four-yard dhoti, the two-yard lungi and the pancha (dhoti tied through the legs) are all capable of shielding the body from extreme heat and cold to varying degrees, says Indraganti.

“When comparing Indian thermal comfort data from the field, I wanted to know the exact value of the clothing insulation of the sari (standard insulation values have been derived for almost every article of clothing and common clothing ensembles in the world), but there were no published standards for the sari, says Indraganti. Computing the insulation value of indigenous clothing (measured in units called `clo’) can help researchers prescribe more accurate thermal comfort models for India. The insulation value of the sari has been determined earlier but only Indraganti had studied it in its various drapes.

In 2013, on a Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship, Indraganti collaborated with other scholars to conduct a year-long study on the sari. She tested two saris, a lightweight yellow silk Kalakshetra sari from Tamil Nadu, and a heavier green polyester sari from Gadag, Karnataka. These she draped around a female thermal manikin called Monica, in the common Nivi style, with the length wound around the body from right to left, pleated in the front at the waist, the pallu swept back over a shoulder.

The $200,000 thermal manikin contained a heat engine which could simulate the temperature of the human body and its thermal responses to stimuli like humidity , room temperature, ventilation, and clothing insulation. Maintaining the chamber temperature at 20 degrees, and Monica’s skin temperature at 34 degrees, the team outfitted her in nine ensembles complete with undergarments, a sari under skirt and bodice. The ensembles corresponded with the way saris are usually draped in summer, monsoon and winter.

The results showed that the sari can handle a wide range of weather conditions. The clothing insulation values were increased by as much as 47% just by changing the drape on the upper body alone. Winter drapes provided al most as much insulation as coveralls, long-sleeved thermal underwear and long underwear bottoms. The sum mer and monsoon ensembles simi larly came close to the Western pairing of turtleneck blouse, skirt, socks and formal shoes.

“You can reduce the clothing insulation of a sari to the value of a pair of knickers and take it up to that of a three-piece suit,” remarks Indraganti.

In field studies, she’d seen domestic workers lift the sari hem up some inches to the calves by tucking the pleats into the waistband. This created more legroom and im proved air circulation up the legs.

Indraganti points out that women can wear a sweater over the blouse when it’s cold, the way she did in Japan at 5 degrees Celsius, or drape the pallu over their heads the way they do in Jaipur and Rajasthan to protect against a severe sun.

Dhoti dynamics
Dr Indraganti has also researched the thermo adaptability of dhoti, lungi, pancha and salwar kameez with different dupatta drapes, but she hasn’t published the data yet. However, she computed the data for the first three for STOI.Interestingly, she says, the dhoti ensemble offered the lowest insulation compared to the lungi and the pancha.Obviously, it exposes the skin more and so lowers insulation, she explains. It probably explains why some men pair their dhotis with knee-length socks when the weather bites.

“We also investigated how the insulation varied with the lungi and pancha folded up to the knees.Interestingly exposing the calves reduced the clo value of these only by about 8-10%, unlike the wider variation possible with the sari,” Indraganti reveals.