Weight before: 90 kg
Weight after: 72.8 kg
Lost 17.2 kg in 4 months
Excess weight hasn’t been a lifelong battle for Dr Arush Arora. Yet while preparing for an exam over a year ago, he found his weight soar up to 90 kg. It was the heaviest he had ever weighed. “I was sitting with my books for long hours, and had almost no physical activity for almost 6-8 months,” Arush says, adding, “Everyone has a tendency to snack when they’re stressed, and I was having a lot of biscuits and sugary drinks, which is how I gained so much weight.”
A doctor by profession, Arush was well aware that his weight gain could lead to serious problems. He was also unhappy with his appearance. “Like anyone who puts on weight, when I looked in the mirror, I didn’t like what I saw,” says the 34-year-old Sirsa resident.
‘I started using HealthifyMe in a ‘preventive’ manner’
After his exams were over, Arush decided to pursue his weight loss plans seriously. He was confident about being able to manage his own diet plan, given his knowledge of food groups and essential nutrients, but he needed to find an efficient way to track his daily calorie intake. He was introduced to HealthifyMe by a cousin and after downloading the app, he began using it in what he calls a ‘preventive’ manner. He explains, “Instead of logging my meals after I had eaten them, I would check the calorie content and portion for each food item before I ate. So for e.g., I would log in my daily lunch plan before having my meal to ensure it was the correct portion size and that it didn’t exceed my daily calorie requirement.”
After 20-25 days, Arush had a fair idea about the calorie count for most of the foods he regularly ate, so he switched to logging after meals. He was extremely diligent about tracking his daily intake. “I never missed a single day, and never went into the red or yellow zone,” he says, referring to colour codes on the app that indicate a user is consuming more than their daily calorie requirement.
‘I never skipped a single meal over the last four months of using the app – I only modified my existing diet’
The ‘preventive’ tracking helped Arush identify where he was going wrong when it came to his daily food intake. “At the outset, I cut out all sugars, junk food and ‘white’ food,” he says, referring to foods that are white in colour and that have been processed and refined, like flour, rice, pasta, bread, crackers, cereal, and simple sugars. He also stopped all junk food and random snacking. “HealthifyMe helped me identify the correct portion sizes. What was also helpful was the break-up of three major meals and two snacks on the app. It made me put a stop to all the random snacking I had been doing,” says Arush. He also used HealthifyMe’s water tracker to monitor his daily intake and has been drinking 12-13 glasses of water a day.
Arush did his own research about healthy foods, and basically designed his own diet based on what was available in the market and what was already being cooked at home. “I didn’t want to cause inconvenience my mother or wife,” he says.
Arush never skipped a single meal over the last four months of using the app – he only modified his existing diet. “Earlier I ate two chapattis, now I eat one or one-and-a half. I also avoid high calorie vegetables and pulses, like chana dal, and started having Soya nugget curry instead because it’s filling,” he says. “I had decided that I would eat foods that I enjoyed. I work very hard, so I didn’t want to deny myself that simple pleasure. At the same time, being a doctor, I can identify what foods are tasty and good for me and those that are simply an indulgence. I was careful to stick to the former,” he says, adding that he enjoys trying the recipes featured on HealthifyMe, especially the cold tomato soup and infused water.
Arush starts the day off with idlis for breakfast, followed by a mid-morning cup of tea without sugar and an occasional biscuit. His lunch consists of one or one-and-a half chapatti, 60 gm of sabzi with a small bowl of curd and lots of salad. “I really enjoy my salad. Cucumbers and tomatoes have worked wonders for me,” he says. After a snack break at 5 pm, which consists of a cup of tea, coffee or lemon water, dinner is a light meal of pulses with chapatti.
‘HealthifyMe was the most simple, efficient and effective way to track my calorie consumption’
Arush believes 80% of his weight loss can be attributed to his changed diet. “For me, what worked was tracking my meals because I could really see where I was headed. I never joined the gym or had a workout plan. I go for the occasional walk, but what I did do was increase my overall mobility,” he says. “When I am consulting my patients, I make it a habit to get off my chair at least once every 30 minutes.”
Having lost 17.2 kg in four months by using the app’s features, Arush has also brought his Body Mass Index (BMI) down. “Initially my BMI was 31, now it is in the normal range – less than 25,” he says. Calling himself a man of determination, he says he was confident he could lose the weight but needed the right tool to accomplish his goal. He found that in HealthifyMe. “The only way to draw the line when it came to what I ate was by tracking my daily intake. HealthifyMe was the most simple, efficient and effective way to do that,” he says, concluding, “I always knew I could lose weight but I needed some direction, which I got from, HealthifyMe.”
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