Healthy Habits: Family time keeps Dr. Sumitra Khandelwal motivated

Taking care of your health is a priority and nobody knows that more than physicians and healthcare providers.

It can sometimes be difficult to find ways to stay healthy, so we’ve asked members of our Baylor College of Medicine community to share what they do in their daily lives to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Dr. Sumitra Khandelwal, assistant professor of ophthalmology at Baylor, shares some of her healthy habits with us.  healthy-habits-khandelwal

Q: What health decisions start your day?
A: I wake up early in the mornings. In a perfect world I would use that time to work out. Now that I have twin babies, that is not possible! Instead I spend time with them in the mornings, which I feel is the healthiest decision for balancing my family life and work. They wake up around 5 a.m. and we cuddle and play, then I quickly get ready to go to work.

Q: What is your go-to healthy breakfast?                              
A: I try to eat some type of egg in the morning – ideally an omelette. For the omelette, I get everything ready for the week: I pre-cut the vegetables, place them in Tupperware and use egg white mix. This speeds things up in the morning. If I don’t have time then I quickly chow down on a hard boiled egg, which I made for the week or a breakfast burrito at the café at work.

Q: What is your favorite type of exercise?
A: I like going to the gym because it motivates me. A quick work out would be a 20-minute interval training on the treadmill and then 20 minutes lifting weights. But I really enjoy doing classes – Zumba or Pilates especially. The timing just doesn’t always work out.

Q: What activities do you do when you can’t fit in a full workout?
A: I use my babies! I started doing that early on when they were smaller but now they are about 20 pounds each. I have a baby jogging stroller for twins and I do lifts, crunches and squats with each of them. They love it, I get to spend time with them and it’s great strength training.

Q: What is your favorite healthful snack?
A: Popcorn without butter.

Q: Do you take vitamins and if so, which ones?
A: I actually have just continued my prenatal vitamins – I had so many left over!

Q: What do you include in your child’s lunch?
A: The babies are just eating solids. Instead of jarred food, we make fresh blended purees with organic vegetables and fruit and then freeze them for the week. It’s fun to mix different ingredients and see what the babies like.

Q: How do you make an unhealthy recipe healthy?
A: In general, we use a lot less salt in recipes. Instead we use spices – you get used to the tastes.

Q: What is your nighttime skin regimen?
A: Just gentle soap and water.

Q: What is your go-to Houston restaurant for a healthy meal?
A: We like ordering from Ruggles Green. There is one near our house and it has such a variety of foods.

Q: Do you use a pedometer or Fitbit and what is your daily step goal?
A: I don’t because I basically never sit down except at the microscope to operate. Plus, I walk back and forth between the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center and the Alkek Eye Center. I should use one though just to encourage my husband who is at a computer most of the day. How much more active I am despite not going to the gym as much!

Q: What is your favorite health tip that you live by?
A: Everything in moderation – whether it be dessert, TV time or stress at work.

Additional Resources

Dr. Huda Zoghbi jogs, hikes to improve fitness

Taking the stairs, morning exercise help Dr. Theodore Shybut stay fit

See how Baylor stays fit with more healthy habits from members of our community

See how Baylor promotes a culture of healthy living and wellness

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