Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home   | Volume 6, Issue 46, Tuesday, November 29, 2011



The ring-to-be

The wedding bells have already started ringing, welcoming the wedding season with all its grandeur. With the hike in gold prices, investment in wedding rings is essentially one of the most crucial decisions to make. A menial wedding ring has evolved from its image of being a simple mark of companionship to that of status and taste. Hence, we get to spot such scrutiny nowadays when it comes to choosing the perfect ring.

Having a clear cut budget in mind is definitely one of the first things to focus on before setting out on a wedding ring rampage. One should also take into account the wearer's choice and taste because it is going to be treasured by that individual for life. A wedding ring is forever, and hence longevity is also something to be considered.

Solid gold rings are almost extinct this season, while the popularity for diamond rings has reached its peak. Yellow gold and rose gold are obviously the most preferred of all offerings, but the recent addition of white gold is also gaining a lot of acceptance. Some renowned jewelers have also added platinum bands to their list, catering to niche customers, with prices going as high as 1 lakh per tola, as there is no government control over the price of platinum. Each metal has its advantages and disadvantages. For example, platinum is an extremely durable metal and will last a long time. However, it dulls much more quickly than gold, and it's harder to bring back the initial luster. One can even do a mix of different types of metals and create a combination of different colours and textures.

Diamond rings this season are varying from a price range of 25 thousand at minimum to 5 lakhs at maximum depending upon the four Cs: colour, cut, clarity and carat. Metal weight is also an important factor to look out for as that contributes to the price as well. The most popular cuts of diamonds are round brilliant, marquoise, pear, heart, oval, emerald and princess. The sight of a glittery white princess cut diamond set on white gold with Tiffany's thongs is sure to dazzle the sight of any onlooker. Right now, silver-looking engagement rings are the most popular. If your fiance-to-be is a woman who stays on top of the latest fashion trends, go with a platinum or white gold band. But, if she's more into classic designs, go with the traditional yellow gold band.

Simple, single coloured bands with no designs are what is in rage for men at current. Small diamonds can be added according to preference.

Most diamonds found in Bangladesh are bought from India and South Africa and then set here in the country. Before buying precious stones, it is very important to look for proper certification to evaluate the quality of the stone.

By Afrida Mahbub
Photo courtesy: Aarong


Wedding weight loss


12 Tips: 12 weeks for ideal December weight
December is foggy, windy, cold and a season for weddings! You want to look great and feel your best whether it's your own wedding or your friend's. If it is your sibling who is getting married than you don't just need to look great but you need to be bursting with energy. Let's focus on how to work on a regime that will make you look gorgeous, stunning and beautiful by this winter season.

Food combing: Some say it's a science but I say it's an art to know your body's intimate relationship with food and find out what works for you! Diet is not about what you can't eat but what you can eat.

If you eat the right portion and combine foods that digest best together, you will lose weight. Add vegetables to all 3 meals you eat. Eat fruits or nut/seeds in between the meals. Fruits should always be eaten by it self. Combine non starchy vegetables with carbohydrates (bitter melon. spinach with rice]. Focus on vegetarian source of protein at night (daal, chickpea etc with leafy greens).

Eat cultured and raw foods: Cultured or fermented foods are extremely beneficial for digestive health, better elimination and energy. Yoghurt, lassi etc. can be taken after meals. Put a pinch of hing in your yoghurt or lassi. One of my most favourite fermented foods is kimchi, which are fermented vegetables loved by the Koreans.

Eating raw food that comes directly from the nature is also beneficial for beautiful skin! The more raw fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds you will eat, the better your body will feel. These foods have essential vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber and good fats.

Portion control: This is the most important thing to understand about weight-loss. How do you eat the right portion without depriving yourself? If your plate consists of 50 percent vegetables (mostly non-starchy) and the rest with protein and/or carbohydrate you will feel satisfied or full faster. Always keep space in your tummy after meal. Think that you will only fill 80 percent of your stomach's capacity.

Sugar withdrawals: I know. I know. It's hard but the best way to lose weight fast and efficiently is to stop eating sugar. Sugar is everywhere from rice, bread, cookies to sweets; it dominates the entire food world.

Parasites and fungus thrives in a body on a high sugar diet. Sugar also causes dandruff and hair loss in the long run. But there are other great options. Have you ever tried un-pasteurised raw honey from a local vendor? Honey is medicinal, a beauty secret of many and contains 21 amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. Try it!

Wheat fast: "Mache bhate Bangali!" So I am not asking you to get off rice but yes getting off wheat will certainly help in losing weight. Gluten is a protein in wheat that is sometimes not easily digested therefore eating too much wheat can cause sluggish energy. Keep away from gluten for 12 weeks if you want to be the stunner at the wedding!

Water works: Aim for a minimum of 8 cups of water a day; especially between meals to see great results in your weight loss. Start your day with lemon or lime water in the morning. This will kick start your liver.

Whole foods: Eat an orange instead of store bought orange juice that is loaded with added sugar. Eat fruits like papaya and pineapple which are whole, nutrient dense and high in enzymes. They are absolutely “Beauty” fruits. Eat brown rice that is rich in fiber and B vitamins instead of bleached, polished white rice that has minimum nutrients.

No caffeine: Caffeine causes massive issues in one's body. It interferes with nutrient absorption and eliminates undigested foods. The liver has to work extra to clean your body out of caffeine. Therefore add green or herbal tea to your diet. Boil ginger, cinnamon and cardamom in water, strain and drink the homemade herbal tea. You can add Tulsi to your tea; this herb is an awesome stress buster!

Add good fats: Your brain and organs are made from fat. If you don't add the right fats the organs will suffer. Make sure you are getting the right sort of fats. Extra virgin or virgin olive oil can be added to you salads which will provide both fats and nutrients to your body. My favourite oil is coconut oil which is anti microbial too!

Avoid salty snacks: Excessive salt in your diet that comes from street foods, restaurant foods [MSG in Chinese foods] and any processed/packaged foods will tax your liver heavily. Salt will also hold on to the water in your body which in turn will hold on to the weight. Add garlic, spices and herbs in your diet instead of too much salt.

Sleep: It's a must for incredible health and vital energy. If needed, do a head massage before bed or whole body oil massage before going to bed. Here the Tulsi tea will work its magic too. Tulsi has the ability to control blood sugar and reduce cortisol released from your adrenals. Cortisol is a stress hormone that is created by the body when in stress.

Exercise: As they say, “there is no magic pill for weight loss.” I truly believe in it. Wholesome foods and exercise is a must for weight loss. I personally love Yoga or a 35 minute walk over pills alleged to make me look anorexic in a week's time.


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