“Self Love is the best love”
With the sudden boom in the health and wellness industry, people have finally started to get that much needed exposure to lead a healthy and proactive lifestyle. Lifestyle coaches and nutritionists are mushrooming overnight, Companies that promote healthier alternatives like Raw and nourish Organics are getting large fundings and alternate grains are finally getting their due.
Gone are the days when we ate mindlessly and calories were an alien concept. Now, the focus has primarily shifted to Being fit and not thin. The more aware people get, the more popularity concepts like Naturopathy gain.
Naturopathy is the science of healing, curing and living one with nature. A more scientific take on the age-old tradition of Ayurveda this science combines the healing and nutritious properties of fruits & vegetables along with therapies, massages and Yoga.
India is home to lovely Nature-cure institutes with Jindal being the oldest and most revered name. While it’s been around since forever, Jindal is old, haggard and not a very pleasant experience. I felt I needed a week or 10 days away for myself to break the bad lifestyle pattens I had again developed, like skimping on my gym routine and having dinner at 11pm. After a little research and a slight nudge from a friend, I ended up booking a 10 day retreat at Pema-bay park hills in Vizag.
Pema claims to have been established by an ex-Jindal doctor and follows a similar line of treatment. The focus is on healing lifestyle diseases and giving the system a reboot while shedding a few kilos as a by product. A trained, professional driver comes to pick you up from VTZ and a short 40 minute drive takes you to a hill that this healing resort is situated on. By the first look I can tell this experience is going to be nothing like Jindal. An open, breezy and vast lobby welcomes you to this sanctuary. The staff is so polite and hospitable that you end up feeling awkward at times. This is luxury personified with clean room loaded up with all modern amenities like any standard business 5 star hotel.
I requested for a room on the 3rd floor and that gave me the same awe-striking view of the Bay of Bengal you get from the infinity pool. My assigned Doctor was a Jindal old timer and showered me with a lot of attention and time. He patiently identified appropriate treatments and every evening I got my schedule for the next day via a personalised WhatsApp image.
The treatments rooms also boasted of the same stunning views of the sea and the walking track was adorned with fragrant bougainvillea and palm trees swaying in the breeze. The therapists were young and mostly from the North-Eastern parts of India, they were well trained and extremely courteous and professional. The make or break aspect of such a resort lay in it’s food which is the biggest challenge for a place like this. To be creative with 600 calorie menu while satisfying the tastebuds of fussy people like me is no small task. Jindal was a nightmare with it’s food but Ex-ITC Chef Rajeev does a tremendous job! Managing to serve me dessert in my limited calories is something I will always be grateful for to Chef. From interesting smoothies to lip smacking soups all served elegantly, followed by dishes like Quinoa khichri, Ragi idli & Zucchini noodles in arrabbiata sauce. Even the fruit though weighed out and portion controlled always came out in different cuts and presentation styles.
They even did two live cooking demonstrations to encourage us to make similar dishes once back. This was also instrumental in removing the hype behind healthy dishes and that they can be complicated to make for some people. From 5 am to 9 pm, the days were filled out therapies, activities and tons of hydration and nutrition. After 10 days, I could definitely feel a difference and would try to repeat this experience at least once a year.