As Singapore enters into its second month of the Circuit Breaker, apparent lifestyle changes are beginning to take place on the supermarket shelves. From initiate food piling of snacks and sugary drinks, the shift in the shortage of flour and strangely oatmeal have seen Singaporean moving on to a more conscious diet. Combined with the tightening of the guideline on exercising, we speak to our Sydney-based Nutritionist cum yogi, Maya Butti in some ways you can keep healthy while adhering to the stay-home guideline.
Smartfuture (SF): Hi Maya! Why don’t you share with us a little about yourself?
Maya: I am a qualified nutritionist and yoga teacher. I used to work corporate in a previous life, but after living an unhealthy lifestyle for many years, I felt that it was time to make a change. When I was working in corporate, I practised yoga once a week. This one class came to me like salvation, not only was it a great stress reliever, it helps me find myself again. I then decided to go all in and went to India to study yoga, where I learned about yoga philosophy and Ayurveda (the yogic system of health). This inspired me to pursue natural health and I studied to become a nutritionist. I now treat people holistically- using food, supplements, lifestyle changes and yoga to help people live a healthy life and feel great in their body!
SF: With do you think are some of the modern ailments bothering people?
Maya: Some of the more common issues I notice includes, digestive issues, food intolerances, trouble sleeping, weight loss and weight gain, poor energy and hormonal conditions.
The body systems are interrelated, so an issue in one part of the body an often be caused from somewhere else. For example, when I work with clients to heal their gut, we often see an improvement in skin conditions and mood! Nutrition consultations can help with a broad range of chronic conditions naturally and while treating conditions at their root cause.
SF: With the big migration from working in the office to homes, what are some tips you can share to help us adapt better to this new situation?
Maya: Staying active while adhering to government guidelines is a pretty big lifestyle change. Many of us will now have to find ways to exercise from home – lucky though, there are plenty of online yoga and fitness classes to keep us busy! Lay off the excuses and remember to include them in your schedule! During this time, eating healthy is even more important – find me on Instagram to get some nutritional tips!
SF: What is some advice you have to keep the spirit up during these uncertain times?
Maya: Something that has helped me greatly is to remember that we are all in this together. Not just you and your household or your workplace, but the whole world. We as humans are strong enough and compassionate enough to get through this together and I think that we can even come out stronger. We may be farther away from each other physically but I believe we can be more connected than ever.
SF: With the shortages of snacks and unhealthy food, what is some advice you have for our next grocery run?
While I confessed to having the occasional dark chocolate as my guilty pleasure, often the “feel-good” snacks make us feel good for the few minutes that we are eating them but it will hit us later all and the consequences can hang around for quite a while!
I am all about having a healthy balance and believe that we can indulge every now and then, however it is important to maintain a long-term vision of our health. The instant gratification of eating those foods will never beat the long-term benefit of eating healthy. I think saving those snacks for once a week is a good compromise. This is especially important for those whose physical activity level has decreased.
As a piece of general advice, I would suggest people to remove as much processed foods as possible and get back to eating whole foods. Imagine what your grandmother ate- that is usually a good indication of how we should be eating!