20210317 weight loss
Jasheer Arshad before (left) and after Image Credit: Supplied

Jasheer Arshad was curious. Very curious. He’d stumbled across a home remedy that claimed it could cure obesity. The UAE-based expat had been toying with the idea of a weight-loss plan for some time now, ever since he was diagnosed with high blood pressure and asked to exercise. Weight management seemed the only way to get off the daily medication. Still, he felt lazy about the effort it would take. That’s when he stumbled across the drink that claimed to be the answer.

So the 76kg, 165cm-tall Indian expat from Chennai decided to give it shot. He found seven such drinks online – he tried the easiest ones and settled on those that seemed to work for him; they number three.

Weight-loss drinks
Morning, on an empty stomach: Apple cider vinegar in a cup of hot water
During the day: Ginger-lemon in hot water
After dinner, before going to bed: Mix of black cumin, ginger powder and turmeric powder in hot water

A few days after he began this routine, he saw that he had lost some weight. Motivated, he tookthe next step.

He began to hack at his meals - first skipping breakfast, then lunch. But this was a gradual process. He replaced his morning chana-paratha and South Indian treats with tea. His other meals comprised rice and rotis (flatbread), lentils, vegetables, and a chicken/fish curry. He first stopped the rice. Then, he began to lessen the flatbread quantity. Soon for lunch he was eating biscuits or bread with tea. In the next stage, he stopped eating lunch completely – his main meal was dinner, for which he ate grilled fish or chicken with vegetables and fruits. He had no cheat days or meals. He had no food from restaurants. And he kept drinking his three home-brewed potions. “The stomach shrinks when you diet,” he says, adding that because it was gradual the portion changes didn't affect him in a bad way.

He adds: “ [I] avoided oily foods, sweets, rice, junk food, fat containing food and carbonated drinks and diary. Before any food, I used to check the calories [to see] whether it will increase weight or not.”

Within three months of starting his regime, says Arshad, his BP had gone back to normal; he could now ditch the pills. So he continued. And lost weight. So he continued. And lost weight. And so…you get the idea.

Five months on, Arshad had dropped a drastic 28kg. “47.6 I reached in November. My body is supporting to lose more weight but I feel weak; I’m not able to even walk. So I stopped it,” he says. His doctor was concerned. He urged Arshad to gain weight – to get to 55kg at the least.


Still, Arshad has been maintaining the 47-49kg window. “I put more effort to keep [at] this weight for a few more months because even my parents want to see [the change face to face]. Because of the pandemic situation I’m not able to visit my home, but as soon as I can I want to show my parents and then I’ll put on some weight – [get] to the doctor’s recommendation,” he says.

So he’s stuck on one meal a day – but the quality of his consumption has changed. He’s begun to eat his favourites: biryani, KFC, pizza, etc.

No guilt, only smiles at this change of fortune; happy meals are now an option.