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‘Sirt’ your way to shape

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Pic credit: greatbritishmeat.com

The latest discovery to join the volatile dietscape is of course sirtfood, which seems the talking point of 2016 as a wholesome regime. Surprisingly, it claims to stand upon two focal ingredients, which are dark chocolate and red wine, which people usually think of as weight-decreasing elements. Already its contents are viral and much publicised in the Press. However, representatives of the food and beverage fraternity are still not completely satisfied with its outcome and effects on the human body.

Apparently, ‘sirt-rich foods’ as studies show, function by activating proteins in the body called sirtuins. These nutrients regulate biological processes such as aging, cellular-death, inflammation, metabolism and even protect the physical constitution from undue stress.

Also Read: Exploring Bahraini Cuisine

 Sirtfoods imitate the upshots of fasting and exercise, plus accelerate a weight- loss programme and offset those harmful bearings of junk food. The diet is said to gather a lot of steam because it consists of red wine, especially Pinot Noir and dark chocolates that comprise minimum 85% cocoa and ideally black coffee.


Anti-food-fad views:

Pic credit: qraved.com

Pic credit: qraved.com

Nutrition expert Priyanka Jaiswal hints at “the marketing gimmicks surrounding these food-types that see a meteoric rise”. “There are certain provisions which are like mood-uplifters, energy-boosters, system-cleansers, immunity-improvers, skin-detoxes, comfort tongue-ticklers, happy-appetizers etc. that lend a temporal relief to low phases but are never sufficiently salubrious in composition to achieve long-term results. So in order to restrict piling of pounds, one must rigidly check calorie-count,” she explains.

Dieticians in general thus put the blame on cyber-addict people who follow scores of net-generated diet and pop in OTC (sold over the counter) capsules for nutritious supplements. “Maintenance of proper diet is done through psychological conviction and not via some unscrupulous aping of what others suggest or what is benefitting your neighbour. For each body has its own character to deal with,” firmly believes Jaiswal.

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Diet, nutrition and wellness consultant Sheela Krishnaswamy on the other hand out rightly trashes the emergence of sirtfood as a global phenomenon as she ascribes it as “probably just another fad” and there are no scientific details about it on basis of which we can say that it’s here to permanently stay,” she contests.

While the debate is still on between short-lived, superficial additives and a real nutritious solution, there are diet-exponents who argue about misconceptions influencing the collective minds at large. “Fact is, old concepts die out and new trends occupy their places. That is how the graph fluctuates. Now it is oil-free cooking and guilt-free desserts, and in the next moment, it would be something else. It is h important to know the calorie-content of a particular food-product before buying it. However, does the label adequately mention it? It should be decreed as a mandatory dope for the consumers’ advantage by the authorized body of FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India),” says Jaiswal.

Pic credit: alltop10.org

Pic credit: alltop10.org

Chef’s take on creative food-sphere:

Veering the conversation to ‘debatable’ dark chocolates and red wine as weight-slashers, seasoned chef Joymalya Banerjee of south-Kolkata’s posh Bohemian restaurant opines that: “the authentic skills of a cook work best in balancing the flavours of a dish and retaining its health value despite there being fat-inducing ingredients”. Serving up Bengali, continental and sea-cuisines on the guests’ platters from his eatery, this culinary specialist is a gastronome himself.

“We have introduced two dishes on our menu called ‘Red Chilli Chocolate’ where we have mixed the hotness of chillies with the biter-sweetness of dark chocolates and another one by the name, ‘Death by Chocolate’ which leaves an overwhelming impression of the black confectionery titbit on your system. We have also come to learn about mixing the red wine with white meat and vice-versa which wasn’t the case earlier on,” he inputs.

 Every creative sphere is hence open to innovation and chefs alike imaginative painters effortlessly draw up their own experimental recipes with their ladle. “Can you challenge an artist if he paints a green sky and blue grasses? Same way, ice-creams can be presented as appetisers on the table,” he drives home his point.

 

Pic credit: noisey.vice.com

Pic credit: noisey.vice.com

Dietician’s comment on food-trends affecting health:

Though sirtfood is certainly a good piece of news for all chocoholics but is a chocolate-rich diet safe for kids and old adults who suffer from gums and teeth problems? Plus also, diabetic patients may suffer! “Moderation is the key,” notes popular dietician Suman Agarwal who has authored user-friendly titles like The Don’t Diet Diet Cook Book and Unjunked — Healthy Eating for Weight Loss.“Even though these foods are rich in sirtuins, I believe that going overboard is never a sound idea. As it might lead to other issues like teeth-troubles and be unsuitable for those with complaining blood-sugar levels or any other metabolic disorder. Besides, these foods lack in other macronutrients like proteins and carbohydrates,” she reasons.

Sirt ingredients and the merits:

Nevertheless, if you thought, sirtfood is only about enticingly gorging on those lovely chocolates and drinking wine to stay fine n healthy and yet get a kick at the same time, then you are mistaken. For there is plenty of other stuff on its plate to score in the sirtfood category. Thus, several edibles like apples, citrus fruits, capers, parsley, blueberries, green tea, soy, turmeric, olive oil etc. have been claimed to be marked with sirtuin factors.

 To the uninitiated, food-researchers in favour of sirtfood observe, “the diet focuses more on consuming a fare that is rich in sirtuins and antioxidants with multiple benefits to play a vital role in help improving the overall health. This apart, it exercises a calorie-restriction to approx. 1000 to 1500 kcal for a massive weight-loss encouragement. However, the stress is mainly laid upon ingesting what best the Mother Nature can offer”. The sceptical school of thought argues that as “it doesn’t shed much light on any other macro or micro-nutrients, hence it is not always a feasible option to follow sirtfood regimen without a certified doctor’s recommendation, especially if the concerned eater has any health condition to address and tackle with”.

Regarding the nutritional aspect, dietician and nutrition educator, Neha Chandna says  that “it is nutritious in parts in context of some foods but chocolate and red wine are not something I would counsel my clients to opt for on a daily basis as they are acidic in nature. In small portions, their merits come to the fore as both work as great anti-oxidants and mood-stimulators, but in excess, they can cause health issues like heart problems, obesity, blood pressure etc.”

Pic credit: twitter.com

Pic credit: twitter.com

Is it a passing fad?

Although it is disputed, that sirtfood diet may be a “passing fad”, yet the plan can be incorporated in your daily diet to gain optimum health profits. However, the general emphasis lies on “sustaining a balanced diet with high-quality lifestyle, where there is a little bit of everything”, is attested by all food-examiners.

What is Sirtfood Diet?

‘Sirt-rich foods’ as studies show, function by activating proteins in the body called sirtuins. These nutrients regulate biological processes such as aging, cellular-death, inflammation, metabolism and even protect the physical constitution from undue stress.

How is it different from other diets?

The diet focuses more on consuming a fare that is rich in sirtuins and antioxidants with multiple benefits to play a vital role in help improving the overall health. This apart, it exercises a calorie-restriction to approx. 1000 to 1500 kcal for a massive weight-loss encouragement.

Foods that make up the Sirt food diet?

Include this in your diet:

  • Cocoa
  • Coffee
  • Red wine
  • Lovage
  • Kale
  • Green tea
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Soy
  • Strawberries
  • Turmeric