The 5 myths Dr. Patankar broke that have helped me lead a happier life

Dr. Nitin Patankar is a health & fitness myth-breaker. He brings fresh perspective on “right” health, for nothing according to him is either good or bad. Practical and realistic, this doctor brings a magical alchemy of logic, science, reason and ultimate good sense. I am a believer and owe 10 years of “right” health to knowing him. Not preachy, never holier-than-thou, his is a method of both, positive & preventive, sustainable good health.  Self-effacing, slightly shy and reserved, he transforms into an ace storyteller with several insights that hit you between the eyes.

The 5 myths Dr. Patankar broke that have helped me lead a happier life are:

  1. Don’t worry about your weight:All of us are bitten with the weigh and measure syndrome, completely blinded by gross dimensions. Dr. Patankar introduced me to my body’s chemistry and showed me why I will never be slim and how starving myself is actually letting me accumulate fat, depleting my muscle. My Body Chemistry Analysis (BCA) is a real time snapshot and is a window to what I need to tweak and alter to stay fit.
  2. Just because I go for a morning walk, I don’t need to join the gym:This was the first lesson I learnt at Dr. Patankar’s school for the health aspirers, albeit as ekalavya. ‘Time poor folks like us need to get purposeful and get on a purposeful 30 minutes of exercise, a combination of cardio and gym routine’. That sent me off to the gym nearly a decade ago and I learnt that doing regular, planned exercise in the disciplined, time-bound and well-directed environment of my gym was a necessity. After practicing yoga, doing aerobics, playing innumerable games, I warmed up to the idea of gym and learnt the value of a burst of purposeful activity for the body.
  3. You eat dal but that it does not mean your body gets all the protein it needs: I believe I eat very sensibly and healthy, love regular home food of dal, roti, subzi, salad and buttermilk Patankar showed me why I needed to take protein supplement and just how it would act in me, so the food I eat turns to muscle (read gold) rather than become fat.
  4. Who said you have to start your day with exercise: I dislike early morning meetings because they get in the way of my morning exercise routine. Dr. Patankar says exercise in the evening, and that before bedtime may be even better. ‘Use the treadmill or do your abs before bedtime. You set your body off and it keeps burning unwanted fat even as you sleep! We had suddenly freed ourselves from the morning exercise routine.
  5. Respect movement:Do you walk 10,000 steps? My day’s movement gets me a modest 3500 steps if I’m lucky. My pedometer helps me get conscious of movement. I’m pacing the floor when on the phone, walking about during internal meetings and discussions, walking up and down stairs in our two-storey home eager to go and fetch my phone charger or my Spanish dictionary. I hate delegating my steps. You can dance, skip or get any movement going. If your cooking, you could skip or dance so you get some steps, which guarantees a smile from the patient.

We met Dr. Patankar at Jupiter Hospital in Thane one of the places he consults in, this in January. As usual we came away with more practical nuggets. Each time we meet, it’s like a new something he is ready to share with you. Never boring, mundane, he told me about “core abs” and managing my somewhat weak back. Dr. Nitin Patankar (M.D. Medicine), bariatric physician first addressed the Lumiere team in May 2008. He has advised a number of Lumiere team and Lumiere Family members since and continues to provide consultation, now even over Skype. He touches the lives of thousands of patients by providing them guidance in lifestyle modification. “Dhyaas”, a group he founded, is made up of people on a shared journey in lifestyle modification. We look forward to his visit this 15th March 2012 to address and break more myths and share deep insights with the lightness (pun intended) that the topic deserves.  Everyone’s invited.

Posted by Deepa Soman

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