Festive Detox

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From the desk of Dr Nandita Shah

The word ‘detox’ conjures the image of nature, rest, fasting, candles, and meditation. A day of complete rest, doing away with all worries and just being in harmony with yourself. In our stressful life it's worth gifting ourselves this experience – especially during festivals when everybody is doing just the opposite or right after we have been overindulgent. The need for detox implies that we are otherwise ‘tox-ing’ our bodies.

Far too many people opt for a detox and get better, only to indulge and get sick again. Most of us usually plan a total cleanse once a year. But imagine how you'd feel if you took steps to stay ‘detoxed’ every day of your life?  

I too loved festival foods and the excitement of entertainment. But after years of eating healthy, my body craves only for whole plant based food and I am less and less attracted to the toxic lifestyle. This is what SHARAN advocates – delicious, healthy food all the time. Have you ever had something more delicious than our green smoothie? It’s simple, wholesome, tasty, yet hard to over indulge in. If you haven't tried it yet, maybe it is time to do that right now?


Weight loss is also a sign of detox

Chennai based 29 year old Meghna Goyal, a new mom, shares how she managed to lose 25 kilos in six months! 

After delivering my baby, I was in a fix with my weight loss. I thought cutting calories was not an option as I had to feed the baby. So, weight loss seemed impossible. Believing in what I was told that breastfeeding would automatically lead to weight loss, I went with the flow for the first three months when I realized I had not dropped even one kg.

At this point, a friend suggested that I go on a vegan diet. I read about it extensively and watched videos related to breastfeeding and weight loss. I learnt that there was no correlation to how much milk we consume and how much milk we produce while lactating. I decided to switch to a vegan diet and started my journey on 4 March, 2019. 

I consulted dietician Poonam Sharma and followed SHARAN’s guidelines of the whole plant based diet. Soon enough, I had no milk cravings, egg cravings, or sweet cravings. Instead I started craving vegetables. Vegetables have become my best friends. Now, I am a pro at cooking tasty food without oil. 

And here’s the best part of my journey – I lost 25kgs in six months, without a day of starvation. My baby is healthy too!

Raw beetroot halwa 

Sweeten your taste buds with this delicious raw beetroot halwa, with no ghee, sugar or preservatives. Surprise your loved ones with good health and compassion this festive season.


  • 1 cup beetroot, unpeeled, grated.
  • 1/2 cup grated fresh coconut
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • raisins (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • slivered almonds for garnish


Mix the grated beetroot and coconut together. Add the cardamom powder and raisins. Add the dates and mix well using your fingertips to knead the dates in the beetroot mixture. Serve garnished with slivered almonds.

Food for the mind


If you love Facebook, then join us to be supported on your plant based journey. Since 1 January, 2016, we have been offering three possibilities

1. SHARAN India This is SHARAN's main Facebook page which you can like and follow for getting useful daily updates and news from the plant based health world. You will also get news about the latest SHARAN events, see testimonials, and more.

2. SHARAN's Vegan Support Group This is an open support group to know more about vegan/plant-based lifestyle. Here you can ask questions and share inspiring stories, tips, recipes, etc.

3. SHARAN's Plant Powered Health This is the new group only for the past attendees of SHARAN's events: seminars, cooking classes, retreats or longer programs.

All our doctors and presenters will be here to answer your questions and give you tips. If you have attended our events join this group to be a part of our family.

Please like the main SHARAN page and join the group(s) applicable to you.


Consider a clean-up? 

All said and done, festive times are occasions when we go easy on ourselves, and succumb to bingeing on unhealthy food and sleeping late. Yes, it does impact us. Lethargy and body aches are usually the first symptoms. Fever, cough, cold and more – in no particular order – follow one after the other. For sure, some rest and relaxation do us a whole lot of good, but what about all the junk we have packed in? That's still very much in our system and may bring in some effect if we continue to pile on.  

Join us for a clean-up as we give you some tips for a festive detox. You can start with a day, three days, a week, fortnight or a month. You could even make it your lifestyle! Whatever it is you decide, making a start, however small, is half the battle won. 

1. Go plant based

When we wish to cleanse, we need to first avoid putting the trash in. Animal products including dairy are extremely toxic. Stop dumping them in the one and only body you have.

2. Up the fibre

Fruits and salads act like a broom and cleanse you within. Ensure you don't peel most of the fruits and vegetables as the fibre and anti-oxidants work best hand in hand for a healthier you. 

3.  Go organic 

Pesticides and preservatives from our food cause hormonal havoc. Do yourself a favour – go organic and get off processed foods (sugar, tea etc) that are packed with preservatives. Start reading labels. 

4.  Get off grains

Rice and breads are not easy to digest. Just have your vegetable curries and dals and avoid these accompaniments. Remember not to forget the salads with your meals!

5.  Fasting

Either the body is digesting or healing. If you are eating all the time, the body is so busy digesting, it has no time to heal! So start with a 12 hour fast, and slowly stretch up to 14 or 16 hours. Give the digestive system the much-needed break and allow the body to heal.

6. Go on a smoothie detox

Spend the entire day in the company of green smoothies. Just imagine how light and energetic you will feel.

7. Go raw

Either go raw half a day every day. Or do a whole raw day once a week and gradually increase the frequency. Check your current raw percentage, considering 25% as every meal, and then plan a sustainable goal of how to increase this portion. 

8.  Exercise

Yes, that's a big one when it comes to detox. Try and go to the beach or a park for some fresh air and invigorating shake up. You also get to absorb a good dose of Vitamin D!

9.  Join a group

If you feel you can't do it alone, join a group or a class where you gain support from the others. Perhaps, you and your spouse or best buddy can plan a schedule to detox together?

10.  Sleep well

What happens when you don't recharge your phone or laptop battery? Well, almost the same thing happens if you don't get a good night's sleep.

11.  Go natural

Chemicals in our household and personal-care products play a vital role in our well-being. Go natural and replace with herbal options. They are easily available, you just need to start looking.

12.  Mentally detox

This is extremely vital. Attend a spiritual class physically or virtually, read inspiring books and keep good company. 

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This newsletter was compiled by SHARAN Head of Mumbai, Reyna K Rupani, She facilitates the Six Weeks to Health Gain & Weight Loss program and also conducts health talks for schools, groups, corporates and more.

Edited by Vasanti Sundaram, Bangalore who has also benefitted from the SHARAN programmes, and now spreads awareness of plant based lifestyle through her talks.

Sanctuary for Health and Re-connection to Animals and Nature (SHARAN) is a social enterprise with the goal of spreading awareness about holistic health and an ecologically sustainable compassionate lifestyle.

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