Is it too late to start working out? Why am I not losing any fat? Am I doing it right? All of us find ourselves pondering over these questions at some point. Meet Payal Rangar, a nutritionist who is helping others to find a healthier and better version of themselves. When life hit her hard, she decided to face it all with a positive attitude and an undying determination to succeed. Payal Rangar started off her journey by believing that “it is never too late to start.” Learn more about her quest into health and nutrition in this interesting conversation with Storiyaan.
Questions and answers
After being diagnosed with gluten sensitivity, what were the difficulties that you had to overcome provided you were accustomed to a particular diet?
Initially, I started going through a lot of inflammation, gut issues, mood swings, bloating, and insomnia. So I went to my regular doctor but she couldn’t figure out the exact problem. Then I went to a nutritionist and she could identify that I was diagnosed with gluten sensitivity. After being on a diet for 7 days, I saw a tremendous change and I started enjoying my journey with a healthier version of myself.
What were some of the immediate changes that you had to bring about in your food and lifestyle post-diagnosis and how did it affect your psyche and emotional health?
Some of the immediate changes were just leaving regular food and wheat and switching to healthier food like ragi flour, rajgeera, quinoa, legumes, and coconut flours. I could eat anything and everything except wheat and I am quite used to it now. There were not a lot of options available 4-5 years back when I was diagnosed, but since then I have been living a healthy life. It had a very positive impact on my mental health and I am enjoying the process.
Your bio says that “weight-loss is not about getting there fast but staying there forever”. How far is the process sustainable as far as fad diets, intermittent fasting, and extreme workouts are concerned?
You should not get hefty in life about your goals because it’s not a one-day job. We have a lot of fad diets these days which are not effective. I do suggest keto diets to my clients but for a small period of time as they might give quick results but they are not sustainable. Being a part of Indian culture, we live by our rice and chapattis and these types of diets will not give you the same satisfaction. Extreme workouts aren’t good either. You cannot get your dream body in two days, it’s a lifestyle change and you have to be consistent. Intermittent fasting is a good chance only if you do that once in a while. Don’t make it a lifestyle.
A lot of people suffer from insecurities due to obesity. What was your strategy of dealing with the clients suffering from the same and how did you work at their confidence building?
In my profession, I get to meet many people who are obese or mentally unstable but the good part is that I can motivate and guide them with my counseling sessions and tell them about the results of different diets and how they will benefit them. The way I counsel them boosts and motivates them up to work on themselves which indeed builds their confidence.
How far do you recommend the use of supplements when it comes to achieving an aimed body type and the use of vitamin supplements among teenagers?
We do require supplements sometimes when we face deficiency. But you should not skip food and depend on vitamins and supplements. Teenagers nowadays live on junk food so we should try to put them on a natural source of vitamins instead of supplements straightaway. Especially boys, they focus on protein drinks to get fat-free proteins but switch to egg instead, that’s the natural source. Everything is present in the natural form and I would especially recommend giving those. It’s always better if we look up healthy alternatives.
You often post recipes for healthier alternatives to certain foods. What kind of research goes into the curation of such recipes, and which among them is your favorite and why?
Eating healthy is my passion. I keep trying something or the other every day and try to find healthier substitutes or alternatives. One of my favorites is using palm paste instead of brown sugar or white sugar. It’s naturally sweet and doesn’t raise your sugar level. A lot of my clients loved it too. Artificial sugars might impact you negatively. The only artificial sweetener I recommend is Stevia. It’s safest of all. Palm paste is also a very healthy alternative.
How did you practice a sustainable and healthy lifestyle during the lockdown, when gyms and fitness centers were closed, and what was your strategy to keep away the lockdown blues?
Staying at home gives you coze and comfort and is also the need of an hour. We cannot go to the gym now so find an alternative. Switch on YouTube and work out at home or book a trainer. Everything is available online now, you just need to find an alternative.