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Expert advice on Health & Diet Tips for a Safe Holi

Date : March 12, 2017

Mohali, March 12, 2017: Experts at Fortis Hospital, Mohali suggest measures and tips to celebrate Holi in a safe way. By following these, our doctors believe, will help protect skin, eyes and hair against harmful elements of Holi to a great extent. Nutritionist at Fortis Hospital Mohali spells out tips to relish food during Holi without detaching anyone from relishing the festivity.

How can you keep your skin protected during Holi?

Dr Jatin Sharma, Dermatologist, Fortis Hospital Mohali

Pre- and during Holi

• Oil or moisturize your face and body well before stepping out as the oil creates a barrier preventing damage to the skin and helping remove the colour easily.

• Apply a toner on your face, as it helps close and minimize the pores which prevent any breakout problems.

• Wear long, sleeved tops and full length pants, leggings or salwars while playing Holi. Use waterproof SPF 50 sunscreen to prevent tanning.

• Apply nail paint to prevent staining of the nails.

• Make sure the hair is oiled well so that it is protected from the chemicals in the colour.

Post-Holi

• If the colours don't come off easily, avoid using face wash or scrub, try using a mild cleanser. Use a generous dose of body lotion after the bathing session.

• Wash your hair with cold water and a mild shampoo to remove the oil, dirt and colour. Use a conditioner afterwards.

When the skin gets affected by colour, it can lead to breakouts, itching, rashes, swelling, aggravation of eczema and irritation. Some colours can affect the scalp and cause allergies and hair fall. Dr Sharma said, “If any reaction turns harmful, then please consult a doctor immediately.”

How can you keep your eyes protected while playing Holi?

If colour enters the eyes, it can cause severe irritation, redness, watering and itching. Dr Mukesh Vats, Ophthalmologist and Retina Specialist at Fortis Hospital Mohali shares the following tips for eye care.

• Avoid using toxic colours. Synthetic colours used in Holi contain heavy metals like lead, which causes red eye, chemical burn or corneal abrasion.

• Make your own safe colours by using natural products like rose petals, besan, palak. This will ensure adequate eye care.

• Synthetic colours used in Holi contain heavy metals like lead, which causes red eye, chemical burn or corneal abrasion.

• The green synthetic colour used during Holi may have a risk of causing fleeting blindness. The shining mica particles in red colour can cause damage to the cornea.

• Please ensure that your eyes remain protected at all times. Use a sunglass to protect your eyes from a misfire of colour-filled darts or water jets.

• Avoid throwing water balloons as it can cause severe eye injury or even head injury.

• DO NOT wear contact lenses as colour may get trapped between the lenses and result in eye infection. The lenses may also be of no use any more.

• Never rub your eyes in case colour enters them as this may cause irritation or burning.

• Apply coconut oil or a cream around your eyes and on your face so that you can remove the colour easily without any harm to the eyes.

• Use lukewarm water when taking bath and washing off the colour. Keep your eyes closed while you wash your hair and face so that the colour does not get inside your eyes.

How can you maintain a healthy diet during Holi?

Dt Sonia Gandhi, Head – Dietetics & Nutrition, Fortis Hospital Mohali, lists the following:

• Enjoy your favourite dish but eat small portions.

• Do not succumb to the societal pressure of binging unnecessarily.

• Do not forget to work out or go for your walk on or before the day of festival.

• Do check the expiry date of food products purchased. Sweets and desserts are highly perishable, so make sure that you are eating a freshly-made product.

• Detox the next day by hydrating yourself well and adding extra helping of fruits and green vegetables and reducing overall intake of 10-15% calories in your next day’s diet.

• Prepare snacks or food items at home so that ingredients can be modified to make them healthier by reducing the fat, sugar or calories, increasing fibre and essential nutrients. For example:

o Use whole wheat rather than maida (white flour) or refined flour

o Use jiggery (gud) or honey rather than sugar

o Bake snacks rather than deep fry o Use fruits or fruit salsa as a part of your dessert

o Add skimmed milk to make thandai

o Involve each and every family members in festival cooking and make it too fun-filled festival activity.

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