Abdominal Cruncher. A Six Pack Workout

This Cruncher was acquired when I was in London, working for Standard Chartered Bank. And it was in the store room in Bangalore all these years, forgotten as we usually stay in Cochin.

This is a valuable addition when I am trying to keep the quest for six packs going in this lockdown when the gyms and swimming pools are closed.

Just that I don’t want to do away with any of the workouts in the last couple of months, the crunches became additional workout. With the result I clocked 1714 calories burned on these workouts, on the Apple Watch.

Abdominal Cruncher. A Six Pack Workout

An Admirer and a Rare Visitor!

I had a unique visitor this morning. Someone who came all the way up to our place and walked through the terrace inside through the upstairs bedroom, past the upstairs living room and was at the door of my yoga place.

A few minutes before, my wife called me to the terrace to show a husband and wife sitting on top of the building. And I was shirtless warming up for the yoga and did my favourite pose usually done in front of the bathroom mirror. I flexed my muscles to show what I want to be six packs.

The couple looked at me.

And then Sunu went down, I was on my yoga exercises with my back to the door. And when I turned she was sitting there, looking at me.

My first instinct was to take a photo, but the phone was outside. So I started talking to her. I teased her that she dodged her husband to come and look at me. She became shy I think, and walked back. I followed her grabbed my phone, but by then she was out into the terrace and climbed down the wall.

First it was the male monkey who came into the lower floor living room, sat on the carpet and looked at me peacefully when I was on the sofa reading. He brought the family last time.

But this time the mother monkey came alone to look at my shirtless muscles. Naughty!

Like in the case of any visit from a female admirer, I didn’t tell my wife. Of course she’s s..t scared of monkeys.

He came with family
An Admirer and a Rare Visitor!

A Healthy Option From Halo-Halo and Falooda Family!

It’s actually inspired by the nature loving, organic oriented and display specialist Neethu Nambiar, that I made this dessert.

It’s healthy, it’s natural and it’s very tasty. But mistakes are to be accepted. I had the colour pages of Bangalore Times to place my display product. Neethu was kind in not commenting on it, but I know!

Halo-Halo of Philippines and Falooda of Middle East/ Iran are treats by themselves. But they may have sugar, processed ingredients etc.

This has chia seeds, fresh coconut milk, fresh mango, papaya, apple, slightly roasted peanuts, natural honey and freshly grated coconut as contents. All natural and unprocessed if you pardon slight roasting of peanuts.

Refrigerate chia seeds soaked in fresh coconut milk. Take out after sometime and make a lower layer in a Mason Jar. Add a layer of puréed fresh mango, then a layer of peanuts, another layer of chia-coconut milk, pureed papaya on top, honey above, another mango layer, peanuts, apple, papaya, chia, mango and grated coconut.

Our Mason Jars are in Kochi and since we’re stuck in Bangalore Lockdown, we used plain glasses.

The healthy and fresh factors make this a highly desirable dessert above the famous Halo-Halo and Falooda.

A Healthy Option From Halo-Halo and Falooda Family!

Intermittent Fasting and Life Beyond Lockdown

This is my message today to our intermittent fasting group.

We are starting at the prospect of having to live with the Coronavirus lurking in around us! Some predictions such as ‘no international travel for 2 years, no holiday for a year, huge job loses etc’ may well be rumours, I hope.
There are so many things impacting personal life. Health, perhaps is the only happiness. We need to at least preserve it, knowing that gyms, swimming pools, play grounds and even walking tracks are going to be very restricted.
Months long lockdown have taught us new skills. Some of which we can further them with some imagination and efforts.
The dance for TikTok video may be modified to learning some of the fast paced Bollywood/ Tamil dances. A good way for aerobic workout.
You will be a star at dance parties when all these get over.
The cooking skills acquired could be fine tuned for healthy food with focus on fresh and plant based as far as possible.
And very importantly, do yoga. If you are new, do at least Pranayama (three times) and breathing exercises. Also do a 20 minute meditation. If interested I can send videos showing how to do Pranayama and breathing and on assisted meditation.
For us Intermittent fasters, we should not let go the benefits we have been enjoying.
Perhaps this is not the time to experiment new things. Let’s be careful not to try anything extreme if it’s new.
Weight loss is a big target to many of us. I have read that those obese are more vulnerable to viruses.
Two of the weight reduction methods are diet and intermittent fasting, both supplemented with some physical activity.
We have chosen the Intermittent fasting route and if we add the diet program of sensible eating during eating window, the results could accelerate. This could be low carb, medium protein and high natural fat (preferably plant based protein and fat).
I would recommend watching the Netflix program ‘Game Changers’.
On Intermittent Fasting, let’s try and make it clean fasting for 16 hours. Those who can may extend to 17 or 18 hours. That’s when autophagy and benefits such as cellular repair take place. However, let’s not rush into 24 hour fasting etc now, if new to it.
We have seen so many expert commentaries that IF would boost immunity. One of them gave a simple example that our immune system will not be overworked fighting food based bacteria when we fast, as there’s no food intake. And the rested fighters will be more effective to combat viruses.
Last item for discussion today is diabetic and IF. I am a beneficiary of lower glucose readings and reduction in medicine intake to half, as a result of IF.
A recent discussion with a medical director was an eye opener. There are two high level dangers for diabetic in doing prolonged fasting. Hypoglycaemia and Ketoacidosis.
I would suggest, those of us on diabetic meditation ( tablets only) please send me a message and I will share more on the discussion with the good doctor.
If there’s anyone taking insulin, please contact your doctor and discuss fasting.
Intermittent Fasting is being promoted as perhaps the best for controlling diabetes. If so, we should not be denying the opportunity to the affected people. But with sufficient precautions and checks that the doctor friend alluded to.

Intermittent Fasting and Life Beyond Lockdown

My Work on Healthy Ice Cream. Inspiration, Neethu Nambiar

I was fascinated by the social media display of a lovely looking icecream by Neethu Nambiar. The display was so beautiful and i wanted to see what best i could do.

Importantly it was a healthy option, something we ignore when it comes to ice creams.

Neethu’s recipe had chia seeds in it, and I always wondered how chia seeds can be used, having heard that it is healthy.

So I had Chia seeds soaked in milk, added with mango, apple and peanuts. Instead of sugar I used honey. The mixture then got refrigerated.

That was a mistake, Neethu advised me later. Refrigeration was sufficient. Somehow I transferred the frozen stuff into a plate.

The look reminded me of ‘spotted dick’ the English dessert eaten with custard. I apologised to Neethu for the tardy look but assured her that it tasted good and was healthy, though I wanted to use coconut milk instead of diary milk. She suggested I could have used oat milk or almond milk.

Yaay, i can make ice cream

My Work on Healthy Ice Cream. Inspiration, Neethu Nambiar

Doomsday Predictions in Plenty, We Need Solutions

Rainbow Seen Over Kochi Backwaters

Noah’s Ark when finally landed after the floods was greeted by a huge rainbow, believed to be God’s signal of end of such punishment.

World is hiding from the spreading Coronavirus and nobody is saying it’s over. We don’t know if the Kochi rainbow is a signal that worse is over, but what we hear is doomsaying by so called experts.

Perhaps it’s correct, it will remain in a bigger or smaller way, till a vaccine is found and available or till human race become immune.

While most people raise the issue without a solution, there are sporadic voices about the precautions and resistances that we can build.

One such advice is to boost body’s immune response. Intermittent Fasting, of which I am a strong proponent is regarded as one key solution in boosting immunity.

It’s time that we lose focus on TikTok videos, Cooking and eating binges and concentrate on good steps like Intermittent Fasting and sensible lifestyle to stay ahead.

Doomsday Predictions in Plenty, We Need Solutions

Iskunda, the Banana Snack

Iskunda, the name is used perhaps only in our household or may be by some relations who had them in our house. Most likely it’s named as part of the gibrish by one of us children. It could be even me.

When bananas become ripe, overripe for that matter, this delicious snack come up.

Brief recipe: ‘Iskunda’, the banana snack. Unlike other fruits, ripe bananas can’t be refrigerated for longer life and banana snacks become common in this lockdown. Overripe bananas smashed with glass‘s bottom, add some sugar, grated coconut and milk powder. Mix well. Add a tablespoon of rava, rice powder and maida (both in the absence of baking powder) and mix again with some cardamom powder and salt. The consistency should be sufficient to deep fry. Add some broken nuts. Bring oil to boil and put the mix into it allowing ameba shape formation. Deep fry on both sides. Do not reduce fire so that the mixture won’t drink oil. Tasty snack is ready. It’s ‘Iskunda’ as it’s the name we call it since childhood.

Use baking powder instead of rice powder and maida. The liberty to give ameba shape makes it easier.

Iskunda, the Banana Snack