Thursday, March 03 2016, 01:45:24
  • fatasstic
  • fatasstic
  • She Says

Jayati Godhawat

JWB Blogger

Indian Dietetic Association, Jaipur Heads Reveal Secrets Of Good Health. Find Out Now!

  • JWB Post
  •  February 3, 2016


Well, when I fixed the interview with Dr. Kanika Verma, the president of Jaipur Chapter Indian Dietetic Association (IDA), I had my personal concerns and questions ready. I like any other person, went with a perception that we would talk about weight reduction diet charts, different diets, tips, etc. But I was to be proved wrong.

Reshma Boolchandani (Left), Kanika Verma (Right)

We decided a classroom in Home Science department of RU to be our rendezvous, and Secretary of IDA Dr. Reshma Boolchandani joined us too.

Here’s our conversation with them that will undoubtedly change your viewpoint towards Nutritionists and Dietitians for the better.

Me: We would like to know about your work as a professor at Rajasthan University and as a Jaipur president of IDA.

Kanika Verma

Kanika: Indian Dietetic Association operates at the national level since 1962, and there are thirty chapters all over India. Jaipur Chapter started in the year 2000 and engages dieticians and nutritionists from all over Rajasthan. I am also an Associate Professor at RU in the home science department, teaching since 1991.

Our primary objective as IDA is to voice collectively for creating awareness about the proper diets and nutrition in the maintenance of health, and in the prevention and treatment of lifestyle diseases like diabetes, cancer, stress, and the like. We conduct various workshops and seminars for the same.

Me: That’s enlightening; I personally always thought dietitians and nutritionists are guides for weight loss and gain. Please tell us more about what all it involves and its scope.

Kanika Verma

Kanika: That’s the problem, everyone holds this perspective. And, we are working to change it. For example, according to NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers), it’s now a legal requirement for all hospitals to have a kitchen and Certified Dietician. But, we see many dietitians and nutritionists being exploited on a salary basis, i.e., they are not paid rightfully many a times. Also, still the eligibility for being a Dietitian or nutritionist is B.Sc. in Chemistry and Biochemistry and doesn’t include Nutrition as the mandatory subject. We entail all such issues in IDA and are working on it.

Reshnma Boolchandani

Reshma: As far as the scope of it is concerned, it’s too vast. There are so many professors in our department working in different areas. Like, I am working on nutrition and diet during menopause and also for Bone-Density in women. During menopause, women go through so many hormonal changes, and we research about the foods that will help them overcome side-effects of menopause and at the same time maintain their nutrition level. Likewise, during menopause, estrogen levels starts decreasing that affects the bone density in women.

Kanika: We have different research scholars working in various fields like food safety, Physical and Sports Nutrition, Labelling and Processing of Packed Foods, etc.

Me: Give us some tips for maintaining good health and checking our dietary habits.

Kanika Verma

Kanika: smiles, see, women are the decision-makers for the food intake of the family including her. So, the women must understand the importance of the nutritional value of foods and other lifestyle habits that will keep her and her family in good health in the long run. There are five basic rules for good health:

  1. Importance of Physical Activity: Regardless of age, everyone must take up any form of physical activity like yoga, aerobics, jogging, etc. Children should be encouraged to take up any sport. This will maintain high energy levels in women and everyone in her family and will reduce stress levels.
  2. Reducing Screen Time: Nowadays, everyone spends their most time on mobiles, laptops, televisions and other forms which make us lethargic and give rise to so many problems like weak eyesight and obesity in children.
  3. Eat natural foods and cut down on Processed foods: In nutrition there are some things we call as white poison which includes – Sugar, Salt and Refined Flour (Maida), and sadly, all processed foods that you can think of contains one or two or all of these. So, one should refrain from eating packed, junk or processed foods.
  4. Quit alcohol consumption, smoking, chewing tobacco and drugs: for it leads to increased stress levels and take a toll on your body resulting in life-altering diseases like cancer, kidney failure, etc.
  5. Have five servings of vegetables and fruits per day. And, we cannot stress more on it, Do Not Skip Breakfast.

    Kanika Verma

Me: Wow, thank you so much for these useful tips, will surely follow them. What is your take on crash diets or celebs diet charts that has become so popular with the people?

Reshma and Kanika

Kanika: We do not support them. We believe that whatever you do should be sustainable. We advise on the balanced and healthy diet, rather than eliminating certain foods entirely.

Reshma and Kanika

Reshma: So many people taking steroids and umpteen protein supplements or sticking to High-protein diets or carb-free diets for reducing weight. That will not help. One must consult a nutritionist or a dietitian and get a customized or individualized diet chart prepared. We must have this clear, being thin is not healthy. Also, one must focus on sound health that will ensure good health in the long run and prevent any serious disease.


Kanika: Our country is facing an epidemic of lifestyle diseases like depression, diabetes, heart strokes, and the like for which India has the highest number of patients. And, it is important to create awareness about how they can be prevented, treated or cured. There may be some diseases that may not be cured, but the right dietary habits, food intakes, and small lifestyle changes can improve their quality of life.

Me: So true Ma’am. Before we leave, one cheats code for the food-lovers.


Reshma: laughs, we are not asking for eliminating the junk food entirely, we just suggesting on avoiding them in routine. Moderation in everything is the key.


Kanika: I always tell my students that like you don’t wear your special and loved dress every day, the same way, one should eat junk food or as people call it the ‘good’ food only when you dress nicely and go out. Not every day.

Ha-ha! Deep know?

Me: Thank you so much, ma’am, for such helpful information.

Note to self:

Stop crash dieting, it’s not healthy.

You may not be thin, but you are definitely healthy, and that is what will matter in long run.

Don’t judge a book by its cover. Have a broader perspective.


Photo Courtesy:

Contact us for your story


'); }());

Leave A Comment

  • JWB along with the brand Jewel Saga bring you a selfie contest inspired by the campaign AidToMaid.

'); }());