It’s time to get Scrub’d up! Order now. 

by Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya 


Taking a break from medicine now for a more personal blog. Bit late in the day I know, but better late than never. 2017 was a great year, but the slogging of internship really took a toll on my mind and body. So this year I’ve decided to get more proactive about taking care of myself. I’m not one for new year resolutions usually (because I have never been able to keep them), but this year I’ve decided to do it for myself.

Don’t get me wrong, I lost 10 kilos during my internship, but it wasn’t the healthiest way to lose weight. The weight loss was more attributed to my 6 months in an everyday casualty surgical unit which had a high number of trauma patients. An average day would have me missing meals and doing my daily run between the ward, blood bank and the operating theatre. So definitely not the best way to diet, but a method of weight loss nonetheless!

So listed below are my resolutions for the year 2018. Even though the blog post is late, I’ve already made a start on them!

1. Move that booty

So anyone who knows me knows that I’m a lazy bum. It takes a hell of a lot for me to get dressed and get ready for the gym, but once I get there I love working out. Its the “getting there” part that challenges me. This last year I barely got any proper exercise because of work, however this year as I’m on roster duty I have a bit more free time to work out. Spinning (cycling away your stress on a stationary cycle) and kettle bells are two of my favourite forms of exercise because they are a group class and in addition to being a good cardio workout, I’ve also definitely seen the benefits with regards to my weight. So this year I hope to get back into doing spinning, dancing or some form of exercise at least 1-2 classes a week for a start.

2. Deal with the after effects of stress

With all the stress and lack of time during internship my skin has gone downhill. I never really had a skin care routine except for getting a good clean up once a month, but I’ve realised that yes I am becoming old, and yes I can’t be getting scolded about not wearing sunblock anymore. So after much research (the world wide web is a wonderful place!), I have settled into a basic starter pack of sorts for facial care. This includes a daily morning and night routine with a twice weekly face pack. Not forgetting the good old clean up once a month. Also after much shouting from my mother I’ve decided to add oiling my hair at least twice a month for starters (because I damage my hair more than enough with all the flat hair ironing I do).

I am definitely no expert in the beauty world, so this is my simple daily program that I’ve been putting into good use. Expect a blog soon with my routine once I’ve perfected it and actually seen some benefits.

3. Go green!

This I have tried and failed many a time. I’m not going vegetarian for any religious purposes, but more so in an effort to eat less meat and just be a bit more healthy. During my final years of medical school, one of my best friends was vegetarian once a week for religious purposes. This actually made it easy for me to also be vegetarian with her once a week, but unfortunately as time moved on, so did my vegetarianism.

So this year I’m hoping to get back into it and go vegetarian just once a week – a regular day of the week to be determined. I plan on substituting meat for veg options like tofu (which I shockingly like) and also to increase my vegetable consumption (getting in my 5 a day).

4. Stop eating all the time

Intermittent fasting. Never heard of this? Nor did I till about 2-3 months ago. Again the internet is a wonderful place. I had heard about the benefits of intermittent fasting and was quite fascinated by it. You basically change your eating pattern as opposed to dieting. You fast for 16 hours and you can eat for 8 hours. The numbers of hours you fast/eat will vary from person to person. Fasting for longer hours means that your body has no meal to digest and absorb so it starts breaking down the fat stored in your body to use as fuel. Initially I was shocked. How on earth can I stop eating for 16 hours when I feel peckish every 2 to 3 hours? Simple. The hours you sleep at night are taken into account.

I don’t plan on fasting daily, but only for 2-3 days for a week at the beginning. This means that I won’t have to sacrifice going out for dinners with my friends and family all the time. So I stop eating at 8:00 p.m. and only start eating the next day at noon (16 hours). This wasn’t too hard for me as I never have breakfast anyway, but my only weakness is my morning coffee which is my pick me up for the day. I can’t function without it. So instead of having milk coffee, I just had black coffee – its a compromise! You can drink as much water as you want during the fast. The down side is that I get major hunger spasms about 12-14 hours into the fast which I keep telling myself mind over matter to power myself through the last few hours. I also get headaches of the hangry (hunger + angry) kind which don’t resolve with food, so I have to take a painkiller. To sort this out I sometimes only do 14 hour fasts. It’s much easier for me to do these fasts on the days that I have day shifts because work is a good distraction from my hunger spasms.

I’m definitely not an expert when it comes to intermittent fasting and so I would recommend everyone to do their own research before embarking on it. I can’t speak for its’ benefits as of yet, but maybe in a month or two I’ll write a blog to keep you updated on my progress.

So there you have it. My 4 resolutions for 2018. All with the aim to have a healthier mind and body (maybe a soul too). I’ll keep you updated on my progress! Wish me luck 🙂

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Hi there!

Hi there! Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya is a medical doctor in Sri Lanka, currently training in Family Medicine. Navigating the healthcare system in Sri Lanka is no easy task and this website was created to help guide other foreign medical graduates and junior doctors. This website also helps demystify life as a doctor in Sri Lanka and also combats medical misinformation circulating amongst the general public!