Indrani’s battle against hypothyroidism and weight loss
November 30, 2023
November 30, 2023
Weighing 10 pounds at birth, Indrani Mishra had always been on the heavier side! “I can’t recall a time when I was lean or thin,” says Indrani, a 34-year-old lawyer from Asansol, West Bengal. “Hormonal imbalance caused due to hypothyroidism, and my love for junk food prevented me from controlling my eating habits, which eventually led to excess weight gain,” she says.
From joining a gym, and practicing yoga, to revamping her diet, Indrani tried everything she could, to lose weight and control hypothyroidism, but nothing worked until she was introduced to HealthifyMe.
In 2016, Indrani’s weight touched 97 kg. “It was high time I sought professional help to lose weight! My mother and husband were concerned too, and they urged me to put my health on priority,” she says. Motivated by their words, Indrani set her mind to lose weight, and there was no looking back. She lost 17 kilos in 6 months!
In August 2016, Indrani discovered HealthifyMe on Facebook and decided to download the app. “I used the calorie tracker to log my food and water intake, and on the first day itself, I realized that my diet was completely off track,” she says. Taken aback, because she was following a diet plan devised by a qualified nutritionist keeping in mind her hypothyroidism, Indrani decided to speak to a HealthifyMe Coach, to understand where she was going wrong.
“It was only after my conversation with a HealthifyMe diet coach that I became aware of the importance of a balanced diet, followed by a deeper understanding of calorie intake and calorie burn. I didn’t know I had to monitor my carbohydrate, protein, fibre and water intake, or that eating even the smallest quantity of unhealthy or junk food made a huge difference, because of its caloric content.” Adding to that she recalls an instance, “Earlier, I’d eat a small scoop of ice cream without thinking twice, but now I know I have to exercise to burn even one spoonful. Understanding this has been the biggest takeaway for me,” she says, smiling.
While absorbing the fact that her entire lifestyle needed to be overhauled to lose weight in order to control hypothyroidism, Indrani took the advice offered by a diet coach, during a consultation, seriously. “The coach I spoke to gave me suggestions that were easy to follow, and made an impact on my life in the first week itself, which encouraged me to follow it religiously.” When asked upon what the suggestions were, she says “I was asked to have a glass of methi seeds soaked in water, first thing in the morning, and cut white sugar and bread from my diet.”
“All I did was set a goal and maintain the recommended calorie intake. I actually started following the advice given by my coach just for kicks, but when I realized that it benefiting me, I became dedicated! It was a turning point for me,” she adds.
Impressed with her free-trial experience, Indrani opted for the personal coaching with diet coach Preetinder (Preet) Kaur and fitness coach Surabhi Srivastava. The first thing Indrani learnt from her diet coach, Preet was the importance of portion control. “Preet always said, “eat what you want but be careful about how much you consume.” For example, if you feel like having ice cream, don’t have more than two spoonfuls; savour the taste and satisfy your craving by having it slowly,” recalls Indrani. “This was a completely new concept for me. I always thought sticking to one type of food would help me lose weight. So I would eat, say, fruits, but in large quantities. Now I know I should eat everything, even healthy items, in moderation in order to balance my diet.”
Preet also modified Indrani’s traditional Bengali diet to incorporate healthier items, like brown rice instead of white. “Like most Bengalis, I ate a lot of rice. But now, I’ve replaced the bowl of rice with one multigrain roti,” she says. Complex carbs like oats and brown bread comprised of her breakfast; and mid-meal snacks included nuts and murmura, all recommended by Preet.
“Back in the pre-HealthifyMe era, I used to eat at erratic times, and to make things worse, I used to have only three meals a day. But I have to give it to Preet! Not only did she ensure that I regulated my meal timings, she also incorporated healthy snacks into my routine,” says Indrani. “Now, I have formulated a habit to never skip my meals. If I’m not carrying snacks with me, I make it a point to have a fibre-rich biscuit with a cup of black tea,” she says.
Along with the diet, Indrani has been diligent about following her exercise regime, curated by Surabhi. “For the first 15 days, I only did stretches to improve my flexibility”, she says, adding that she now works out for over an hour, doing a combination of cardio and bodyweight training.
Indrani’s efforts and unwavering determination paid off! She lost 17 kg in a short span of 6 months and managed to control hypothyroidism with a healthy diet and workout routine. “My weight is between 79-80 kg now,” says Indrani proudly. She admits she couldn’t have done it without the guidance and encouragement from her coaches. “To control hypothyroidism and lose weight one needs to be motivated, and that’s where Surabhi and Preet helped me the most. They monitored my progress via my food and exercise logs, asked me to call even if I had the silliest of questions and suggested food and exercise alternatives whenever needed.” Recalling one of the best experiences of her journey with HealthifyMe, Indrani says “there was a time just after I had started exercising when I injured my back. When I mentioned this to Surabhi, she asked me to incorporate a few different stretches and exercises to my routine, and even sent me videos of the same! That really helped me understand what I was doing. Eventually, the pain subsided and I got better” Indrani adds joyfully.
Preet says Indrani approached her transformation routine with unwavering determination. “Indrani was very motivated and conscientious about following her diet and workout plan. She was diligent and logged her food and activities regularly, which made it easy to track her progress. When she travelled, she continued to stay in touch with me and ran food items past me for approval, to ensure it didn’t hinder with her diet. Her commitment played the most important role in her journey!,” says Preet, adding that it’s quite a challenge to lose weight when one suffers from hypothyroidism, especially to control the condition, but it can be accomplished with discipline, and Indrani is a living proof of that.
The group chats set up by her coaches were another major source of motivation and encouragement for Indrani. “It was amazing to be a part of a group that was filled with people like myself, all, trying to lose weight. I loved participating in the weekly challenges the coaches issued, and I believe these tasks really helped me with my transformation. I felt so encouraged by the appreciation I received from both, the group and the coaches for successfully completing the challenges,” she says.
Indrani’s weight loss has increased her energy levels, and most importantly, bring her hypothyroidism under control. It’s also garnered her several compliments and a brand new wardrobe. “I purchased blouses and salwar suits for Durga Puja a while ago, but they’re too big for me, now,” she says, with a laugh. “Family members and friends joked about how I outshone the festivities at home.” Best of all, she has a newfound confidence today and thanks HealthifyMe for bringing about this change in her life. “If you don’t know where you are going wrong, how can you make it right? HealthifyMe showed me where I was going wrong when it came to my lifestyle and habits. Once I understood that I got back on the right track,” says Indrani, who is now working towards losing another 7-8 kg. “At 34, I’ve managed to slim down for the first time in my life. My goal is to maintain a decent weight now.”
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