Wellness guru: How to avoid over-eating during festivals?

Wellness expert Roopashree Sharma answers your health queries.

Dear Reader,

We all take our health for granted. Aren’t we always sure we are healthy? But then one day, we get a rude wake-up call and find that we can no longer do so.

Does your health bother you?

Do you want to strengthen your body or your immunity?

Do you have bad skin? Or hair issues?

Is your digestive system giving you trouble?

Or is belly fat your problem?

Mail your queries to wellness expert Roopashree Sharma at [email protected] (SUBJECT: Roopashree, please help) for her advice.

Hello Roopashree.
I went through a cervical spine surgery way back in 2017 and I do have stiffness and axial pain in my upper shoulder and in my left hand. Can I do the Suryaassan?
I will appreciate if you can help me.

It is not advisable to do Surya Namaskar or any rigorous exercises as of now.

Since I do not know your complete history before and after the surgery, I would advise you to get a proper medical diagnosis (X-ray, etc,) to understand the type of pain and severity of stiffness in the cervical muscles.

Thereafter, physiotherapy will be helpful. Once the muscles are relaxed, you can gradually move on to yogic stretches under supervision, followed by asanas.


Dear Roopashee,
I used to be a heavy sleeper. However, post pregnancy, I am unable to sleep peacefully. I am always disturbed or stressed, often waking up in the middle of the night.
I tried yoga for 2 months but it didn’t seem to help much. Because of this, I feel a lack of energy and focus in my daily activities.
Then one day, I crash and end up sleeping 8 to 10 hours at a stretch. I know it’s not healthy but what can I do to improve and get better sleep?

It is common for new mothers to feel this way, since the body is recovering. Lack of sleep further builds stress and fatigue.

To begin with, you need to embrace lots of patience and start with the following measures:

1. Deep breathing and Anulom Vilom for 15 minutes every day; don’t do Kapalbhati as of now.

2. Om chanting for 15 minutes.

These will help reduce the anxiety; anxiety leads to lack of sleep and loss of energy.

Also, watch your food habits.

Try not to binge-eat or eat late at night as it aggravates anxiety and disturbs sleep.

Over consumption of tea and coffee hampers sleep in multiple ways.


Hi Roopashree.
I always struggle with the fine line of enjoying the foods I like during the festive season and overdoing it. Do you have any tips for how to still indulge but not feel guilty when doing so?

The simplest rule to follow is to eat at the right time.

Further, to minimise the harm of festive overeating, keep it restricted to the daytime and do not eat post sunset.

Secondly, practise an active physical routine.

But please note: This is not a cure for indulgence.

After a few days of overeating, you should also detox the system and follow a healthy diet that includes soups, juices, salads, etc.


Dear Roopashree
I just finished Covid. And my skin has turned bad. It’s breaking out and my face looks too rough for a girl’s. What regimen can I start?

While it takes a few weeks to fight the disease, it takes longer to recover from the medicine’s side-effects and the weakness.

It is very important to let your body recover completely and a complete detox is required to get rid of the accumulated toxins.

The best way is to sweat it out. Initiate an exercise plan according to your capacity — start with walks and basic stretches and gradually initiate exercises like Surya Namaskar.

For an internal detox, take a few drops of lime with honey in lukewarm water in the morning.

A healthy balanced diet is very important.

If you are non-vegetarian, avoid it for some time as your digestive system might not be able to handle it.

Simple home-made food like dal chawal, sabzi and roti with salad and curd is advisable at least for a few months.

Have soups and salads in the evening and avoid eating post sunset.

If you don’t see any improvement in a month, go in for a detailed consultation with a nutritionist/wellness expert.


Dear Roopashree,
I nowadays develop severe acidity after eating cakes, bread and bakery products.
This did not happen earlier.
Though I have reduced bakery products a lot, I cannot completely avoid bakery products.
Can you please give a solution to the acidity and to reduce reaction to bakery products?
Thank you,

Isn’t it what we all dream of?

Unfortunately, bakery products are a combination of the three prohibited whites for our digestive system — sugar, salt and refined flour, topped with lots of baking soda, artificial stimulants, colours and so on…

When we are younger, our body is able to process these and get rid of the toxins but, as we grow old, our physical routine is reduced and our system becomes more sluggish.

On top of it, binge-eating creates a backlog of food in the intestines that leads to acidity problems.

If you still crave for baked products, only go for good quality — try whole wheat bakery products in moderation, but only once in a couple of weeks.

The best option will always be to bake them yourself – using yeast, whole wheat, healthy sweeteners, etc.

Bon Appetit!

  • You can read Roopashree’s columns here.

Roopashree Sharma, a qualified yoga trainer and naturopathy enthusiast, is the founder of Atharvanlife (external link).

You can send in your health queries to Roopashree at [email protected] (SUBJECT: Roopashree, can you help?). Do remember to include your age, height, weight, where you stay, health issues and any other details that will help. If you wish to remain anonymous, please let us know.

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