Saturday, February 26, 2011

Is rice your daily food ?

Hello people ! Hope you have a great weekend ahead. Today I thought I ll share some interesting facts about rice and how it can be a super food if eaten in the proper way.
Rice was once considered a superior food is souther parts of India and in regions like  Mediterranean, Japan, China and other Asian countries. But then came 'White Rice' which according to me is rather a bane to human beings than a boon. Rice eaters got sicker, fatter and were more prone to diabetic. People started to diet with oil less rotis to shed weight neglecting the fact that fat is also a part of a healthy diet. A healthy body with proper functioning of all the organs will also be slim and attractive with a natural glow.
Another factor that made the white devil even more unhealthy is the invention of rice cookers. Rice cookers when introduced in the 60's were an instant hit among the mothers as they cooked soon and were very fuel efficient. But rice when cooked through traditional method - by boiling it in a pot of water and then removing the 'starched' water once cooked actually washes away the water soluble 'monosaccharides' or rather the 'sugar' content of the rice reducing the GI load of the rice. This starched water is good for hair, skin, sick old people but certainly not for me ! It can be compared to a cup of glucose.

Now what is 'white rice' and 'brown rice' ?

I have taken these images and other information from this link where they talk a lot about brown rice and I think it is very much worth a click :
So brown rice is what we get after removing thehusk of the rice barn either by pounding by hand or by any other minimal processing methods. After removing the bran, other layers just outside the endosperm and along with them all the important vitamins and minerals, we get the famed white rice. The above link and even wikipidea for that matter explains how brown rice has 350% more fibre and 200% more vitamin E among other things. The high fiber content leads to a very low GI load making it one of the healthiest food for diabetics. It has been researched that a person eating white rice 5 days a week is 17% more susceptible to diabetic than a non rice eater and again a person who eats brown rice in a similar manner is 32% resistant to diabetics.
Offcourse I must also say that rice is then artificially coated with extra vitamins and proteins but they are binded together by talc in most of the processing units.  But even with all the extra nutrients white rice couldn t yet match the contents of brown rice. But white rice has an advantage of having extra shelf life which was the basic reason for it s invention.

Please go through some of these wonderfull articles about brown rice in the net.

Pressure cooker method Vs Boiling or Non-pressure cooker method of cooking rice :

There are some advantages and some disadvantages on both the sides. It is up to us to decide which one to choose depending on your body condition.

Advantages of using a Pot to cook rice and then removing the starched water :

  • Removes upto 40% of 'Monosacharides' from the rice as a result of which :
  1. GI load is reduced
  2. Hormones are balanced
  3. Liver gets detoxed naturally making it to digest fat faster
  4. Weight reduction
  5. Hairfall and hirtuism
  6. A healthy food for diabetics
  • The starched water is good for old people, kids, hair and skin
Disadvantageof using a Pot to cook rice and then removing the starched water :
  • A lot vitamins and minerals are washed away (but not fibre)
  • Pressure cookers are faster, fuel efficient and less messy
My Experience with brown rice cooked using a pot :

Duration : Roughly 2 months

Liver spots or freckles on my hands were reduced. My horrible hairfall which lasted for years finally stopped and I eat more but still manage to lose weight (very very slowly though). I made many other lifestyle changes and so I am not sure if it is because of this. But I know one thing for sure about brown rice is that it trains the intestines to reduce the 'carb craving' because on the days when I occasionally eat white rice, I am not able to eat even half of how much I eat brown rice. I know many old people who can not digest white rice or even rice cooked with pressure cooker because it gives them indigestion. There was an article on this even in the local magazines by a doctor. 
It was difficult at first to eat the brown rice but now that I am used to it, I really don t like usual form of rice these days. In love with brown rice !

 So ... 'Are Are Are ... Cauvery aarum kai kuthal arisiyum marandhu poguma' ... 


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bourjois Mascara ... how do I use this ?

Hi people ... well this is more of a query than a post. Well the other day when I shopped for Bourjois foundation, I was given this as a freebie. I had a choice between this and purple single eye shadow ... boy now i regret ! As there were no testers for this particular mascara, I looked at it's package and thought that it should be okay but boy was I in for a big surprise when i came home ! Only after opening did I find out that it was a green mascara ! I am sort of conservative when it comes to makeup. Even my eye shadows are very mild and that too if I ever apply. I don t mind a colored mascara as long as it caries well on my eyes but this looks like an algal growth on my lashes :(. My mom freaked out when she saw me with this. Now what do I do with this freak show ?
A sleek package for a freak product !
Please don t mind my ungroomed face :D

Without any mascara


Lesson learnt : Always ... ALWAYS ... try and buy. Atleast I didn t spend bucks on this one.

I am thinking of trying this when I go out with my friends in the day time ... still not sure ... don t want to be bullied !!!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Nivea fruity shine, lotus and my HG - home made lip balm ...

Hello my friends ... I thought I ll tell you about my tryst with lip balms in this post. I have tried many different lip balms so far like chap sticks, Nature's, himalayas and so on ... But in this post I ll be writing about Nivea fruity shine lip balms, lotus rose flavored lip balm and the one I made myself :)

Nivea fruity shine lip balms are the best thing that have ever happened to my lips. I bought them after reading all the wonderful reviews that were written about them. They generally have a very pleasant smell and nice lip tint. They are also moisturizing and very gentle on my very sensitive lips (My lips were sensitive to even lotus lips balms !!!). My lips also tend to drink everything on them - literally yeah coz all 3 hrs lip sticks last only for 15 mins on my lips and yet i don t lick my lips or so. I have tried three lips balms in this range and they all feel great on my lips.

Dragon fruit flavor :
  • A baby pink tint which lingers on you lips for hours without a re-touch (even on my lips !!!)
  • It is the most natural lip tint that suited me - I naturally have only pinks and maroons on my lips and no red tints :(
  • The odor is pretty strong for few but I personally found it pretty bearable
  • The consistency is nice and it spreads smoothly on your lips and the fine shimmer are not at all over glittery
Pomogranete :
  • Nice maroon colour. This is my second fav flavor.
  • I like it's odor which smells like 'The Fruit Shop on Greams road' juice shop :D
  • Everything else is like dragon fruit lip balm.
  • It has a red tint and somehow it doesn t suit me at all.
  • If over applied - it kinda looks garish. It is the same for all the lip balms but with this one, I somehow find that the effect is more.
  • I find it's smell a little overwhelming and the tint a little artificial on me but this is the HG lip balm for most of the bloggers . Let's just say I am different ...
Now talking about Lotus Rose lip balm, I had this burning feeling within a minute of applying this lip balm. I had to wipe it off quickly because 'that' sensation wasn t good. This is also supposed to be a very good lip balm but you can say that I am allergic to this. I gave it off immediately to my maid along with several lippies that didn t suit me and the maid looked at me amusingly. Some how lotus products don t suit me. Like their face washes and etc. I guess I ll just stick on to their tinted sunscreen which I love.

Lets now talk about my favorite lip balm - home made !!! I had read how to make these in several blogs online and I thought why not give it a try. So this is what I did : Took a very little amount of bee wax in a small cup and heated it in candle's flame. Then I added everything oily and addable from the kitchen : almond oil, coconut oil, olive oil, ghee, castor oil :D he he he and then I added honey too but somehow it didn t blend with the oil mixture but the other ingredients blended like a dream. But had to be carefull with the addition of bee wax - even a little extra wax would make it very candle like. I had to heat it several times to add more almond oil to make it more balm like. Then I poured the contents into a empty lip balm stick.

I use these at nights when I feel that my lips are dry or when ever I am at home, I keep on dabbing it. This stuff is really amazing as it is highly moisturizing and I even feel that they have improved my lip colour a bit too :). But it s not super smooth and glossy like nivea ones but like I said, they are good to be used at home. You ll feel as if rubbing your lips against wax if you compare this with nivea ones. So I use nivea when I go outside and the home made one for home and during journeys. Now I can t wait to try nivea lip balm in guava flavor - boy oh boy ! 


Friday, February 11, 2011

Bourjois Detox foundation, concealer and complexion enhancer

Hello people ... Well this is going to be my first cosmetics review and this is for my favorite blogger - Poohkie :). Glad to review something which I like :). So I am going to review Bourjois Detox Foundation and the concealer.So here goes the story ....
The other day I went to Saravana stores to check out the cosmetics there and by chance I happened to notice their Bourjois counter. I wanted to get their foundation for a long time and so I thought I ll buy it from there. The SA first swatched colour numbers ranging from 55 to 59 on my skin and then later decided 56 would be fine even though it was a little lighter than me. She applied it on my face and yes it did look gorgeous but I made one big mistake - I didn t check out in normal lights ! So when I went back home and tried, I was in for a big disappointment :( .

Foundation on my hand
Concealer swatch

Complexion Enhancer

Complexion enhancer on my hand and a little smeared over the mole

I also wanted a concealer to hide my blemishes and skin discoloration. The SA told me that the healthy mix is kind of little too moisturized and so detox would be a better choice. But the detox concealer came in a roller tip making it good for discoloration and under eye dark circles. I don t have dark circles but I do have pigmentation marks around my nose and etc .. The concealer was available only in two shades - dark and lite - thats all ! I should have skipped this but then I thought I should stick to the same brand formula and went on to buy it.
I also wanted something like a foundation primer because I often end up losing my make up very soon after application. The SA managed to convince me to buy this complexion enhancer as a foundation base which is a peachy liquid that disappears into the skin as soon as you apply it. I think this product works great as a very mild and silky tinted moisturizer individually. Makes your skin soft to touch and a little brighter too. And so it was like this - Complexion enhancer as a base, Detox foundation as a foundation, Detox concealer as the concealer and The Body Shop loose powder (in the darkest shade which actually makes me look a bit darker) to set everything. This was my routine for the wedding I attended last weekend.

My Experience : 
My skin has a very yellow undertone and initially I felt that these foundations weren t yellow enough for my complexion. They were either too white or too brown and sort of no yellow undertone. So when I tried it at home, I wasn t all that happy with the color initially. But only during the wedding I noticed that the peachy complexion enhancer gave a very beautiful yellow undertone that I needed and made me look good in the video :). The foundation as such is very nice when it does what it claims - Matte and long lasting. It felt very lite on the skin and didn t look cakey or patchy at all. It gave a very natural look on my combination skin. But the down side with this foundation is that it is kind of dry a little. You have to spread it quickly on the skin as soon as you dot it on the face else it tends to get patchy and difficult to blend. But the efforts are well worth the results :). Personally I feel that the concealer isn t great for blemishes but decent for discolored skin. It doesn t sit on the skin easily like how a concealer should sit but instead it acts like a heavier version of the foundation. So it is great for dark circles and pigmentation.

Price :
Foundation - INR 950
Concealer - INR 550
Complexion Enhancer - INR 550

 Final verdict :

Foundation - I love it ! I will buy it again even though it wasn t yellow enough for me. Matte, long lasting, natural and comes in a cute pump jar. Very nice but definitely not build able - so just use a pea size.
Concealer - No shades and not great on blemishes. Good for pigmentation and dark circles. I don t think I ll ever finish this and even if I do, I am not buying this again.
Complexion Enhancer - I like this peachy moisturizer. Skin feels silky and supple as soon as you put it on. Very lite and makes you look very much alive :) But for the price - I am not sure.

Even though I am not completely satisfied with these products, I am planning to get more products from Bourjois coz they really feel great on skin and I don t feel irritated during or after their application.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Now, how would they call me ?!

Hi people ... here I go with another post which I hope would be thought provoking !!! I must tell you about my grandma - She gets up early in the morning and starts the pooja even before i enter into REM sleep ! Interestingly, she never bought the 'modern' stuff and is always stuck to olden ayurvedhic medicines and stuff. But even more interestingly, she never used soaps or shampoos and often used to discourage me from using them also. She uses besan flour with turmeric for face and shikakai with arappu for hair. Belive me - she has thicker hair than me with little greys and her skin texture  is like a 25 yr old !!! People who look at her think that she is in her 40 s where as she is now 70 and still no wrinkles. When ever she goes with my mom, they think they are sisters and the worst thing - people also think that me and my mom are sisters ! Now, how would they call me if they see me with my grand ma ?!!! I am now starting to develop laugh lines at 25 (which is because of dehydration i belive) but then my skin is never as clear as them. My mom uses only soaps and shampoos but still has no wrinkles at 45. She tells that it s coz she never turned into cosmetics.

Gram Flour (Besan)

On the contrary, I know another family which has been using very finely refined mineral oil for 3 generations and they all have a great skin. The 80 year old granny looks like a 50 year old, mom looks like a sister of the 25 year old daughter who actually looks like a high school student. Now this really confuses me.

But anyway i have decided to follow my granny's path and for now i have pushed my h&g biotique papaya face wash to the back. My daily routine is now a mixture of mathu's herbal bath powder (a mixture of kasthuri manjal, besan, green gram flour, badam and bla bla), grinded oats, little triphala and yes i guess that s all :D. Not bad actually. I don t have that squeaky clean feel actually and I also sort of felt that I looked a bit dimmer or more rather it was like having bath with a heavy moisturizing liquid body wash but then I still decided to go on. In the evenings I wash my face after massaging with coconut oil to remove the dirt and stuff. But now my friends tell me that my skin tone is better and more smoother. Some even said that my complexion is improving. I am planning to give this routine a little more time as i can also feel that my skin has become soft and yes - free of large pores ...

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Snacks that can alter our life !!!

FLAX SEEDS : - Dietary fiber rich internal moisturizer !!!
 I am totally in love with this baby ! I usually eat this around 11:00 A.M when my stomach starts to grumble for lunch and two tbs of this helps me to survive till the 12:30 lunch break !


  • Fiber rich and so helps in weight loss and digestion
  • Very rich in omega 3 fatty acids ... you can google to find out how this can be very useful for us
  • These are usually fed to horses to improve their coat and as a general supplement. I dunno how it is for the horses but it sure works on my hair ! My hair shines like an ad star and my nails grow really strong.
  • My eye lashes became super thick and long
  • As the heading tells, my skin is glossy smooth even in this winter ! I don t apply any moisturizer and still no scaly skin ... not even in the elbows !
  • It is anti inflammatory and so I was able to do away with few of those stubborn blemishes 
  • Very useful for people who want to reduce the intake of carbohydrates like in pcos, insulin resistance, diabetics and etc. 
  • It is/used to be a staple food for Indians, esp in Maharashtra, and so this should be safe enough I guess :) 
  • Roasted flax seeds, oils and powders are easily available in the grocery stores and is very cheap.
  • It is suggested that flax seed be introduced slowly into our diet because I initially had few boils (like the ones we get when we eat super oily food) and my skin was oily but it soon got resolved and my skin oils were balanced
  • There are studies that suggest that ingesting more than 3 tbs maybe harmful for us and WE SHOULD EAT ONLY ROASTED/PROCESSED FLAX SEEDS
  • Since these are whole foods like oats and etc, it is good to eat them early in the day
  • Has a funny taste but I find it very manageable and sometimes tasty too
  • As this will expand as soon as it was consumed, we should follow this with lots of water
How I take this :
I take 2 tbs of roasted flax seeds and chew them nicely in my mouth so that they are properly grinded in my mouth before I swallow and follow with a cup of water. I don t take this if i have any stomach problem and I don t eat this after lunch. It really does reduce my hunger. I would suggest this for healthy skin, hair, nails and digestion !!! This is something that can be tried in the winter.

I am not regular with this but I would love to be regular with this ! I used to have this in the afternoons esp when you feel like having a small nap ! 

It is difficult to list out all the pros of this as it has so many pros !!! I think I would just write all the things it did to me here :
  • It cleared away my skin of acne and blemishes
  • It helped me to reduce my hunger and boost my digestion
  • One tsp of tea leaves can be used at least thrice for infusion with hot water
  • It helped me to normalize my hormones and I visibly became fairer in matter of 2 weeks !!!
  • It is good for direct application on the skin too ... both our hair and face !
  • I really did feel more active too :D
  • My skin felt real soft
  • It is said to boost immunity but I couldn t tell coz I seldom get ill 
  • I did notice a reduction in my facial hair and hair fall
I really can not think of any except for it's price when compared to ordinary teas but they are truly worth their price !

How I use this :
I take a little amount of tea leaves and add hot water. I ll let it to infuse for not more than 3 minutes and consume after that. I re use the leaves for around 3 to 4 times. I use white tea as of now and sometimes add it with exotic tea varieties from Organic India ... I love their tulsi tea range ... they are so good in winter ! 

I encourage you to search a little about these and try it ! They really did help me shed some 4 horrible kgs ... Do tell me your favorite supplements too :) 

Friday, December 3, 2010

Sabash - Hair and body wash, a product worth its name !!!

Hi all !!! This is going to be my first product review and this one is a pure herbal product (SLS, SLES and all other chemicals free that is :) ). To start off ... I was in search of a SLS, SLES and etc free product for my hair coz I had read that they are really harmful latherers that can result in unwanted health complications and sometimes even cancer !!! Keeping cancer scare aside, I was loosing my most prized possession with each hair wash and so was desperately in search of a soap free scalp cleanser. I had tried all biotique, shanaz hussain hair wash and other herbal brands for my hair but they didn t meet my expectations. I did have a better result when I used reetha and sheeka water to cleanse my hair but it wasn t possible for me to do it every time coz it was really time consuming.
One fine day I had to stumble upon this product called Sabash which was being marketed by Aachi masala (every south Indian will know this masala maker !!!). This claimed to be a pure herbal hair & body wash and after using this, I can say that this IS a chemical free and soap free product. I was really tempted by the long list of herbal names.

Ingredients : Main ingredients are - Aloe vera, amla, eclipta prostrata, terminalla chebula, neem, adolada zeylanica, tulsi, ashwagandha, withania somnifera, almond, reetha, sheeka, nannari, khus khus, henna, curry leaves, fenu greek, lemon, triphala and some more herbs whose english names I dunno. The product looks dark and is thick with a legyam/lepam like appearance. It looks more like a grainy chyavanprash !!!

How to use this : Take a teaspoon of this product and mix it with a small cup of water. Apply this on the wet hair and use the finger tips to cleanse the scalp of dirt. Wash it after 2 mins and repeat if required. It gives a brown lather and together with the grainy consistency, gives a very squeaky clean finish. I would suggest applying oil the previous night or before an hour for a smooth wash. I would use this like a proper shampoo during the oily summer days but since it is winter ... you don t want to get your hair tangled.

Pros :

  • Made my hair silky soft and smooth
  • Hair fall reduced to a very great extent and has a very subtle herbal fragrance
  • Scalp feels clean and fresh
  • You get rid of scalp related problems such as dandruff and etc ... I am also guessing that it makes your scalp too strong for lice too :D coz I was the only one spared from lice after my little niece's stay ;)
  • Really cheap for what it did
  • The ingredients list is really exotic and love the ayurvedic aroma :) 
Cons :
  • This product is not easily available these days. A good product marketed badly !
  • The packing is okay types
  • Your hair may seem rough while wet but once it starts to dry, it gets smooth
  • I have oily hair and so I guess dry haired people must make sure that they oil their hair properly before using this.
This product is not in the shelves these days and so I already stocked 3 boxes of these. I will really miss this if they stop producing it. It is really cheap costing around Rs.50 for 150 g. It will last for atleast 20 days. Wasn t bad on skin too but I like my biotique products with TBS gloves and buffer. 

I will continue purchasing this as long as they produce this product. This is my H&G hair care product !!!

Would love to hear your fav hair care product too :) ....

Chennai Ponnu