7 Day Perfect Indian Diet Plan for Weight Loss
I get this question from many of my readers, What shall I eat to lose weight? Does the Indian Diet Plan for Weight Loss really work?
A simple and straight answer to it is “Yes, it definitely works”.
In today’s post, I will help you with a perfect Indian diet plan for weight loss, list the food items that must be on your plate and exact doable things to lose weight fast, so keep reading.
Note: This article is written by Nikita Mayuresh, Registered Dietitian & Certified Dietitian Nutritionist.
A balanced diet or good nutritious food is important to keep a high energy, healthy body, and lose weight naturally.
The traditional Indian meal whether it is Maharashtrian, Gujrati, South Indian, Punjabi, or from any other parts of the country, is nutritious and healthy.
We have seen many health freaks going gaga over not eating white food like rice, milk, etc. But the truth is any nutritious meal with a calorie value of less than 1400-1500 in a day is good for your health and promotes healthy weight loss.
Are you nutrition deficient?
So how would you know if the diet you are on is a balanced one and healthy or not? Let me ask you a question,
Are you struggling with low energy levels by the end of the day?
If your answer is Yes then probably you are not adding the right food on your plate.
You should first find out which nutrition you are lacking in and add that nutrition-rich food item to your diet plan.
It is not always that a food item full of nutrition will help you get healthier. If your hemoglobin levels are not in the normal range and you focus on protein, it is of a little use to stay healthy.
Lifestyle change is the key
If you ask for my opinion on losing weight, I would say “It is not very difficult to lose weight. But losing weight in a healthy manner and maintaining it throughout requires some doable things” like
- Drinking plenty of water.
- Exercising regularly at least 4 days a week.
- Limiting the junk food intake.
There are many diets with fancy titles and even more fancy information but many times not feasible (1).
Today as a working mom or homemaker we face many daily challenges so there are some lifestyle habits to inculcate which will help you not only to lose weight but also to maintain it (2).
The diet plan I am going to share with you all today comes from my personal experience.
My fight for losing weight provided me this inspiration to share with you a perfect Indian diet plan for weight loss which includes all food groups resulting in complete nutrition for you.
This balanced diet chart will help you get all the vital nutrients that would help you lose weight fast.
Weight Loss Approach
Another question for you 😀 What is the most precious gift you have got from God?
Your answer might be your kids, family, money, etc. but you are able to take good care of them all because of your good healthy body.
And what have we done to our bodies? We have not treated it well by not exercising regularly, eating a lot of junk, and abusing it with improper lifestyle habits that resulted in gaining unhealthy weight and a lot of fat.
Every weight loss journey starts with a strong will power to lose weight and accepting the way you are.
So the first thing to do is having gratitude for our own body and accepting it. Acceptance is the first step towards changing it. 🙂
Along with acceptance, it is important to work on your weight loss plan. Follow the weight loss diet chart with full dedication and you will achieve your healthy weight loss goal very soon (4).
Science Behind Weight Loss
When I refer to the term weight loss, I mean a healthy weight loss. If you stay hungry for 2-3 days you will definitely lose weight but the achievement will come with a lot of health issues.
Therefore we should be sure about what to eat, how much to eat, and when to eat (5).
As per the law of science, if we consume less than 1400-1500 calories per day we will lose weight. And if these 1500 calories come from junk food then it can lead to a great loss of our fitness, immunity, and strength (13).
When we start looking at the food from the lens of nutrition content, not calorie content we are on the right track.
People I meet during various consultations are aware of the importance of these nutrients. They ask me which is the best vitamin tablet? and I am like “No vitamin tablets to start with.. just focus on a well-balanced diet”.
A traditional Indian thali contains at least 6-8 different food items with a lot of nutrition. With the nuclear family structure and a busy schedule, we have started reducing the items at lunch and dinner.
We just need to develop wisdom about our food, when to eat, what and how much. Here are some weight loss tips you can follow to achieve your goal faster.
Here is an informative video from TsMadan on diet chart to lose weight
Small meals many times a day
The most common unhealthy diet routine I have came across consists of 3 meals in a day.
No breakfast, quick dinner, late evening snacks, and late-night dinner. With this current schedule, you shouldn’t be even thinking of losing weight.
The reason for not losing weight is we eat too much at a time and then we starve for the next 3 to 6 hours, then we feel hungry again.
This time we stuff ourselves with junk food. The level of nutrient absorption is very little with such a diet schedule. Our body gets confused with such a schedule and stores fats as an emergency.
8 meals per day theory
A better way to avoid this is by breaking your meal into 8 slots.
If you divide your eating time into 8 slots it gives a good amount of your body to absorb nutrients and lose weight quickly.
When I suggest people to eat a sufficient amount in each meal session, the common question is how to determine the sufficient amount?
This might be the issue for more than 70% of people who struggle to lose weight. They don’t know how much to eat.
The answer to this question can be found in Ayurveda.
As per the ancient Indian wisdom, you shall eat only the amount of food that can be placed in the cup of your hand. Bring both of your palms together so as to touch the sides and make a cup-like shape.
We are going to apply this concept to the quantity of our meal.
You can read the post on how to eat less to determine the right portion size.
Let us now discuss the diet plan and foods to be included.
You may ask, “consuming 8 meals per day is fine but how to do it, and what shall I eat for these meals?”. Here is the meal break up for you.
The detailed food wise chart is given in further sections, in this section you would get to know the main meal categories.
Meal 1: 10 Min after getting up
Do you know what is the best time to have the first meal in the morning?
It is 10 minutes after getting up.
Eating within 10-15 mins of getting up sounds difficult but if you chose the food of your choice it becomes easy.
The early morning meal is the most important meal.
Our body is fasting or did not get any food from the last 10 to 11 hours.
So the first thing to do after you freshen up is to eat nutrition-rich food item like a handful of dry fruit mix, dates, apple, pomegranate, etc.
Most people prefer tea or coffee to start the day. The caffeine content helps you reduce the drowsiness of early morning (9).
If you have tea or coffee as the first thing in the morning, it is adding up unnecessary calories because it doesn’t have any nutrition.
It might hamper your target of 1400-1500 calories, so the best thing is to stay away from these drinks. But if you can’t live without it, reduce the quantity and sugar.
Caffeine in the tea increases the heart rate improving blood circulation, as a result, we feel fresh after having it.
Meal 2: Breakfast
After 60 to 90 minutes of your first meal, it’s time for breaking your fast.
Breakfast the name itself suggests what this meal stands for.
Your body is fasting from the last 8-10 hours as the last meal you would have taken would be dinner or bedtime drink (8).
You might have heard the saying ‘eat breakfast like a king’, which is true. Breakfast is regarded as one of the main meals.
Also, you will have to do various physical activities like going to the office, household work, etc, so this meal will not convert into fat.
So what are the best breakfast recipes?
- Puri bhaji,
- Idli sambar with chutney
- Plain dosa sambhar
can be options for breakfast which will satisfy your taste buds and also are wholesome meals.
All of these meals contain the proper amount of required nutrients.
Eating Sweet is strictly prohibited on normal days except on a cheat day.
The cheat day concept came in to give some relief from the strict diet plan. So on a cheat day, you can eat your favorite sweet or spicy item but in a specified portion. Then it won’t be stored as fat.
Biscuits and packed food contain trans fat which is categorized as bad fat, so it must be avoided.
Also if you eat your breakfast properly you won’t feel hungry at the later time of the day.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the Indian diet chart for weight loss and never skip it if you are planning a healthy weight loss. Read here about popular Indian vegetarian breakfast recipes.
Meal 3: Mid Meal
After having breakfast, you would resume your day to day work/chores.
With a nutritious breakfast, it is easy for you to keep the energy levels and put your best at work. Make sure you do not overeat at any meal as the basic science we are following here is to break the food intake in parts.
Approximately 90 to 120 min after you have your breakfast you start feeling a little hungry. The best food to consume here would be any light food item or liquid diet.
The food items you can consume during the meal 3 session are
- a slice of cheese,
- roasted peanuts
- a fruit.
To gain maximum nutrition you can choose a different food group you would have ate for meal 1.
This meal is to avoid a gap between breakfast and lunch so that you don’t jump over your lunch and end up overeating.
Some people feel acidity on eating fruit empty stomach, if you are one of them then include the fruit here.
This is one of the mid-meal of Indian diet plan for weight loss, make sure it should not be heavy. This is an important meal in the diet plan to reduce weight.
Meal 4: Lunch
Now here comes the time for the heaviest meal of the day which is Lunch.
What I have observed over the years, people tend to flex their lunchtime.
On a particular day, they would have lunch at 12-12.30 pm whereas on another day the lunchtime is 3 pm.
This would not only lead to various issues like acidity and loss of appetite but also can result in serious stomach issues. You shall max change your lunchtime by 15-30 min if you are very busy.
The best lunch options are
This is a balanced diet and provides all the required nutrients.
Here is a list of healthy Indian lunch recipes from Tarla Dalal.
No matter how busy you are during the day, do not skip your lunch at any cost. Skipping the main meals are not good and can surely affect your health.
You might ask, so how many chapatis shall I eat?
2 to 3 Rotis (of the size of phulkas) are recommended. But listen to your stomach, if you feel hungry eat 1 more and if you feel otherwise you can skip 1 roti.
Sabji options can be of your choice but ensure that it is homemade and fresh. Paneer, chole, chana are good options for the source of protein too.
Dal is the source of protein that should be properly cooked otherwise it can give you stomach troubles.
Avoid eating non-veg at this time as it’s time for work and you might feel heavy.
You can include your non-veg dish during dinner. Try to include the food that burns your fat, here is a list of foods that burn belly fat fast.
Meal 5: Post Lunch Snacks
Post Lunch the best meal option is buttermilk as it aids digestion and has many more health benefits.
The consumption of dairy products like curd, paneer, cheese is essential to get calcium and other nutrition.
A slice of cheese can also be another good option. It is recommended that you don’t repeat any food option even if you love it. You can also drink green tea for weight loss.
Though I do recommend eating whole fruit, if you love drinking fruit juice it can be taken at this time.
A couple of things to remember if you opt for fruit juice, firstly it should be a fresh fruit juice without added sugar, and secondly, don’t mix it with other fruits or milk to form shakes.
Fruit, when mixed with milk, does more harm than good.
In the Indian diet chart for weight loss provided below, you can see many dairy products included as these are the best source of calcium and helps in strengthing bones and joints.
This is one of the mid-meal of Indian diet chart for weight loss, make sure it should not be heavy.
Meal 6: Evening Snacks
This meal slot is most crucial. The junk we eat is mostly coming in this part.
Generally, you are in the office or just have finished your household chores and your stomach also starts giving you a signal to quench its hunger.
So you opt for samosa, vada-pav, bhelpuri, etc. and things go wrong here. The key rule in the diet is not to eat anything unhealthy.
You can pack your snacks from home that can include,
- Boiled chana,
- Roasted chana,
- Boiled eggs, etc.
Make sure you have some space left for dinner in your stomach, otherwise, you will not have dinner properly and can have late-night cravings.
This is one of the mid-meal of Indian diet chart for weight loss, make sure it should not be heavy. In any balanced diet chart, you will find meals divided into parts to avoid overeating at a single point in time.
Meal 7: Dinner
Dinner, again a very important meal in a diet.
There are many dos and don’ts for dinner. For example, you shall try to avoid rice for dinner or you should not do much physical activity after dinner only shatpavli (100 steps walking ) can be done, etc.
Definitely, dessert should be avoided after dinner even if you are at a party.
Also coffee, tea should be avoided. There is simple science that it is the last meal of the day after which our body goes too fast for 10 to 11 hours.
Our body does the repair work when we are in sleep. If we eat heavy dinner then all its energy will be required for the digestion purpose and not the function which it is intended for.
Rice can be eaten for dinner if you don’t have a cough or cold.
White rice contains tryptophan which induces good sleep. Also, eat dinner at least 2 hours prior to sleeping for the same above reason. Do not immediately go and sleep, it results in fat storage in the body.
Roti, Sabji, Dal or Rice, Dal, Sabji, or dal roti or dal rice with ghee are all good options for dinner. Ghee is healthy and a good source of good fats.
Choose any one amongst rice or roti for dinner. Most of the options I included in this diet chart are vegetarian so you can call this as an Indian vegetarian diet plan for weight loss.
Here are some of the best Indian dinner recipes.
Meal 8: Sleep Time Drink
In this Indian diet chart for weight loss, I have included Milk as the 8th meal.
Here, I have provided week wise nutrition plans with various meal alternative options. This is a 7-day diet plan for weight loss for 7 weeks. Follow this diet chart to lose weight fast.
7 Day 7 Week Diet Plan
We just need to work smart and hard both to attain our goal in lesser time. Given below are some smart workout points.
Food categories for weight loss
The weight loss is 70% diet and 30% exercise. If you manage the calorie intake and do sufficient exercise you will achieve your goal sooner.
Here are the main categories of foods and food items.
1. Protein-Rich Foods
Protein is a macronutrient i.e. your body needs it in ample amount just like carbohydrates and fats. But unlike fat or carbohydrates, the body can not store proteins.
So you need to make sure you source it from the daily intake.
The important enzymes, hormones produced by our body make use of proteins. Also, it is used to build and repair tissues.
Where do you get your energy primarily? Yes, it is from carbs.
Carbohydrates mean a combination of carbon+oxygen+hydrogen. Once you consume a carbohydrate-rich food, it is broken down and converted to glucose.
Glucose provide you the energy for the daily task you perform. If you don’t need the excess glucose, it can be stored in the body.
Do not fall into the debate of carbs are bad or good. You need it for sure in your daily functioning. Include the required amount of carbs in your daily diet (16).
You must be knowing the importance of vitamins, but do you know to absorb the vitamins you need fat. Fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, D, K, and E are absorbed once they are dissolved in fats (17).
So what kind of fats shall you include in your diet, and which ones to avoid?
The answer is simple, include good fats, and avoid bad fats.
Good fats: Monosaturated and poly saturated fats are regarded as good fats. Some good fat foods are
- Peanut oil
- Olive Oil
- Mustard Oil
- Coconut Oil
Bad fats: Saturated and trans fats are bad fats. Some examples of bad fats are
- Vanaspati ghee
- Fat cuts of lamb
- Palm Oil
4. Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals have a very important function in maintaining the strength of your immune system. Converting food into energy involves the role of vitamins minerals.
As per a review study, people with an adequate amount of vitamin C oxidizes 30% more fat than those who don’t get enough vitamin C (18).
Important vitamins for your body are
Best Foods for Weight Loss
- Green & Colorful Vegetables: Fenugreek, tomatoes, dill, spinach, spring onions, eggplant, mustard greens, drumstick, okra, cauliflower, mushrooms, cabbage, colocasia.
- Dry Fruits, Nuts & Seeds: Walnuts, cashews, almonds, peanuts, pistachios, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, watermelon seeds, etc.
- Weightloss Fruits: mango, kiwi, papaya, strawberry, pomegranate, guava, sweet lime, oranges, grapes, lychee, apples, melon, plums, bananas.
- Whole grains: Basmati rice, wheat, bajra, millet, quinoa, barley, corn, whole-grain bread, sorghum
- Sprouts or Legumes: Matki, mung beans, Chawli, black-eyed peas, kidney beans, lentils, pulses, and chickpeas, etc.
- Milk-Based or Dairy Products: Cheese, paneer, yogurt, milk, ghee, etc.
- Herbs and spices: Garlic, ginger, cardamom, cumin, coriander, paprika, turmeric, black pepper, fenugreek, basil, etc.
Diet for Illness or Disorders
1. Thyroid Diet Chart
People who are suffering from thyroid disorders like hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism need to take special care regarding what to eat and what not to eat.
If you follow a proper diet routine, the disorders like thyroid one can be cured. One needs to understand the reason because of which thyroid like disorder occurs, it is mainly your lifestyle.
2. Diabetes Diet Chart
Close to 70 million Indians are suffering from diabetes. The number is astonishing but the reason is not, it is the same A Bad Lifestyle.
If you are entering mid-thirties, the risk of being diabetic increases many folds. So focus on good food and exercise.
If you have diabetes you can follow a diabetes diet chart for weight loss.
3. PCOS Diet Chart
If you are suffering from PCOD or PCOS you can follow pcod and PCOS diet chart for weight loss.
Exercises to Lose Weight
For healthy weight loss, we need to bring certain changes in our lifestyle. Exercise is a very crucial part of a good lifestyle. The body needs efforts to be fit.
Earlier people’s lifestyle involved a lot of physical work, walking, lifting weight, etc. But now thanks to the technology that we don’t have to put that much physical effort.
This has resulted in inactivity, lethargy, low physical strength, slow metabolism, and of course weight gain. If any advertising, product, service ensures you about losing weight without exercise then never believe in it.
Nothing can be achieved without hard work. Though exercise is not a meal but an essential part of the weight loss journey that’s why I included it in this Indian diet chart for weight loss.
Exercises to do
On average, you shall exercise 4 hours per week. Exercising provide the required stimulus to your bones and muscles.
Here are a few tips and exercises to keep you fit.
1. Select the workout of your interest
It makes exercise creative and you get to learn about your own body and different techniques. Don’t overdo any one form. Most actors follow this point.
2. Fat burning exercises
Our body loses excess fat both during and after exercise aerobic and anaerobically. So make sure that you lose maximum fat during not working by a smart workout.
Weight training or strength training builds our muscles and muscle memory due to which our body loses more fat during not working out.
All kinds of training are important for the body like cardio, Strength training, Endurance training, Flexibility to focus on everything. You can read here about exercise to lose belly fat fast.
3. Try Yoga exercises
Yoga for weight loss is very good, but make sure you learn yoga from a certified teacher who focuses on correct posture and technique.
Yoga not only on our body but also at various levels of our existence and chakras. So any asana does wrong can cause the wrong effect on you.
4. Warm-up exercises
A proper warm-up is necessary for a good workout. Many people end up hurting themselves during exercise, this is due to lack of warm-up or improper warm-up. Warm-up depends on the kind of exercise you are doing.
For example: If you chose Running as exercise then warm-up should be focused on the lower body and some 5 mins of brisk walking.
If working out in the gym then make sure your trainer has sufficient knowledge about the workout.
5. Time schedule
Exercise time should be a maximum of 60 mins of vigorous exercise. There is no need to exercise more than that as the body will feel stressed because of wear and tear caused due to it and in return slow down metabolism.
Exercise can be done either in the morning before breakfast or in the evening. Not immediately after lunch, breakfast, and never after dinner.
6. Be active during the day
There is a new saying nowadays “Sitting is next to Smoking”. Do not sit for a long period of time. Even if you are in the office you can stand up from your desk and just move around or get up for water or for anything else.
Stand up where ever you can instead of sitting and don’t take any back support while sitting or standing. Take steps instead of lift for the first or second floors. And also try to sit upright for most of the time.
These are all habits which will boost your weight loss and inculcate long-term good habits.
Remaining active throughout the day will also make your sleep deeper and your intellect sharper. It all helps you in shedding away laziness throughout the day.
7. Pre-Workout Meal
If working out is the first thing you are doing in the morning or leaving office and before reaching home then the fruit is always a good option.
A gap of 15 to 20 mins should be maintained between fruit and warm up. If you go post breakfast or lunch then keep a gap of 100 to 120 mins and avoid meat before the workout as it does not contain fiber and takes longer to leave your GI tract than a veg meal.
Read the post on pre-workout foods to know about the best foods to consume before you hit the gym.
8. Post Workout Meal
You can eat boiled potato or banana for retaining glycogen stores after the workout and also re-hydrate yourself with lots of water. A protein shake can also be taken after exercise for the repair of muscles.
Read the post on post-workout foods to understand which foods to eat and which one to avoid.
Also, eat within 20 to 45 mins of working out because you are in a state of hypoglycemia which is a precursor of high cortisol levels.
Cortisol is known as stress hormone which wipes out the anabolic effects of exercise.
Water intake and weight loss
Water helps you lose weight, surprised? Let me explain it scientifically.
When you consume water, the amount of calorie intake is Zero. It means if you want to avoid overeating you can make use of this trick (14).
Drink plenty of water during the day. Anything between 6-9 glasses is normal but let your body decide it. You shall drink as much water sufficient to change your urine color from yellowish to colorless.
Drink water 30 min before your lunch or dinner. This will help you stay away from overeating.
Also, when you exercise the perspiration process helps to remove toxins from your body. Water helps in sweating and clears the toxins. It helps to burn the excess fat.
During sleep, our body does the work of repair. So ensure that lights, television are switched off during sleep. Eat 2 hours prior to sleep. Sleep should be uninterrupted and deep for its benefits (19).
If you are active the whole day and eat right then it will help you to sleep peacefully and in time. If possible fix a time to sleep and get up every day as per your routine.
Avoid sleeping in afternoon.you can take a nap but it should not be more than 20 minutes.
Follow this Indian Diet Chart for Weight Loss and let me know how it worked for you.