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Amidst rat race, one doesn’t realise one’s soul is getting disturbed: Shilpa Shetty

Amidst rat race, one doesn’t realise one’s soul is getting disturbed: Shilpa Shetty – Shilpa Shetty Kundra feels that talking about wellness and nutrition is her true calling.

Wellness is a matter of the mind and not just the body. And that was  key theme of the afternoon talk session hosted by Atashi Singhania, Chairperson, Young Ficci Ladies Organisation (YFLO) Delhi on Friday, where actress, businesswoman and fitness guru Shilpa Shetty Kundra discussed how to stay fit, gorgeous and healthy. She was in conversation with author Luke Coutinho who is also a holistic nutritionist qualified in integrative healing. They spoke about ways of living a holistic life amidst the chaos of work and social demands and pressures. And broke myths while giving pointers to how one can balance body, mind, and soul for a healthy lifestyle.

Traditional route
Shilpa’s return to her svelte figure after losing 32 kg post-childbirth is well known. But she didn’t go for any trending diet or health fad, she followed the traditional way something she swears by. Spilling the beans about her fitness, Shilpa says, “For years, I had one tablespoon of ghee every day. And when I decided that I needed to lose weight post delivery, I strictly followed the traditional Indian diet.”

She calls today’s eating habits junk culture. “We need to understand that the age-old system that we once followed is the key to be healthy and not the intake of protein shakes and fat-burning supplements. Look at the way we consumed roti once the grains were collected, they would age the wheat but now rather than aging the wheat, we separate the husk along with adding other ingredients which nullify the very benefits of the bread,” says Shilpa.

Atashi Singhania, Luke Coutinho, Shilpa Shetty Kundra, Pinky Reddy, Seema Jindal

From left: Atashi Singhania, Luke Coutinho, Shilpa Shetty Kundra, Pinky Reddy, Seema Jindal

Discipline is key
“It’s the mindset that sets you apart,” believes Shilpa. Talking about her journey of losing weight, she says, “The industry which I belong to is a fish bowl and there’s a constant need to be presentable. Four months after having my baby, I was out for brunch with my husband when some ladies who were having a kitty party saw me and commented, ‘Shlipa Shetty is so fat’.” She was size 16 then. But what worked as the trigger was when she found herself unable to stand after sitting down to pick up her crawling baby. “It was then that I decided I need to lose weight.” And within three and a half months she lost 32 kg.

Stressing on the need for discipline she adds, “I was constantly doing yoga with high-intensity exercise along with weight training.” Adding to it, Luke Coutinho says, “People keep asking me ‘what did you do for Shilpa?’ and I say nothing, I just went and had good food at her place and watched how her weight was shedding off. She ate proper Indian food with ghee mindfully and in portions. And her exercise was light. Most women after pregnancy punish their bodies with exercise but what they don’t realise is you are fighting your hormones. This ends up in your body releasing stress hormones and you end up gaining more and more fat.” While there were times when Coutinho thought Shilpa wasn’t doing enough exercise, he later realised that what she did was the right amount for her body. “Everyone’s body is different and there is no single approach. One should do what’s right for their body,” asserts Coutinho.

After pregnancy, one loses a lot of core strength as one’s belly and uterus shrink back. “My trainer asked me to do 15 crunches and I’m someone who used to be able to do 40. I couldn’t do even three and I remember crying, wondering if I’ll ever be able to lose weight. So, those who think I’m genetically blessed should know that when I go easy on myself, I gain weight,” adds Shilpa who feels that without discipline one can’t achieve anything, either professional or personal.

“Everyone is so weight-obsessed but if you try and become even a little health-obsessed, we would be a healthy generation with lesser perils in life,” she adds.

Shilpa stresses on the need for ‘sweet discipline’. “While there is a difference in the way we were brought up and the way we are grooming our children, one needs to remember that all those products displayed on the shelf are not healthy. One should inculcate the habit of reading what goes into food. Say no to sugar-heavy cereals, rather go for porridge or rotis rich in fibre,” she adds. While Coutinho’s 3-year-old loves papaya, Shilpa’s 6-year-old has given up refined sugar.

Struggling to be happy
It’s all about balancing your body, mind and soul, feels Shilpa, and says, “Amidst the rat race, one doesn’t realise one’s soul is getting disturbed, which in turn affects your mind and body.” Coutinho adds, “We have happiness classes because we are lacking in it and no amount of pumpkin seeds and turmeric will help. I often come across teens who have low self-esteem because they are brought up in a protective cover by their parents. Once they are out in the world, they start to feel small and insignificant. Thus, a need to look better, which they try to achieve through steroids and growth hormones.” He feels that the social media and constant need to stay updated is making many feel they are missing out while others are enjoying.

Sex life too plays a crucial role in wellness, says Luke, elaborating, “The act of having sex is meant to balance the hormones. While the world is chasing sleep medication, if you make love before sleeping, you will have a good night’s sleep as your body releases oxytocin which can impact emotional, cognitive and social behaviour.”

Amidst rat race, one doesn’t realise one’s soul is getting disturbed: Shilpa Shetty