Variety, her spice

British-Indian actor Anisa Butt on her diet and fitness

As a 12-year-old, I knew that acting is something I want to keep doing. With that in mind, I pushed myself to be active in the co-curricular activities in school. I was a part of several school plays and then I went on to study performing arts till my BA graduate level. I was fascinated with movies, the process of acting and how it linked to psychology which I absolutely loved as well. My professional journey began in a fringe theatre in the UK and then in London I auditioned for a Hindi feature film which brought me to Mumbai for a screen test. Unfortunately, I did not get the part in the final project. But my career got a kickstart as a child artist on Disney Channel India. From there I went on to do films like Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara and Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani. I was also cast as the lead opposite Ali Fazal in the film Baat Ban Gayi.

In between this, I also worked commercially—I worked with Parachute body lotion for a year. I also got to be part of lovely music videos from Kailash Kher’s Rangeele to Yumbarzaloo by Yawar Abdal for Zee Music Company. My recent work is with the webseries Code M, in which I play the role of Gayatri.

Intermittent fasting is great for better insulin functioning and healing of the body.. - Karishma Chawla, nutritionist and lifestyle educator.

Apart from acting, I enjoy dancing, watching movies, writing poetry and travel. I have a podcast called @unplugwithani. When it comes to fitness, I enjoy variety. I actively do everything from boxing to MMA to running and weightlifting. Currently, I am on intermittent fasting. But I do love to indulge on fries or a dark chocolate mousse every now and then.

As told to Oshin Grace Daniell

Nutrition advice

✲ Replace white rice with brown rice, red rice or quinoa. These complex carbs help to stabilise blood sugar levels and avoid insulin spike aiding good metabolism. Also try a wrap with celery or lettuce with nut butter and some protein.

✲ Ensure dinner has some kind of protein everyday to help with metabolism and mid night cravings.

✲ Experiment with fermented vegetables (like Indian achar ) during lunch and dinner;it enhances gut health and overall well-being.

✲ The smoothie is just perfect. It is a powerhouse of energy especially with superfood like chia seeds and maca powder.

✲ For dinner, try consuming bone broth as it aids in gut health and enhances immunity. Pair it with some egg, chicken or paneer salad.

✲ Try out apple cider vinegar and fennel water; it helps with overall well-being.

✲ Consider supplements like collagen, glutamine, high strength multivitamin, antioxidants and probiotics

Anisa’s diet

Breakfast: I have a black coffee and finish my workout early morning. For breakfast, I make a smoothie with fresh or frozen fruit, spinach, oats, homemade milk, protein powder, wheatgrass, maca powder, cacao and chia seeds.

Lunch: Usually a protein like chicken, eggs or fish with vegetables, or when vegetarian, it is lentils or other vegetables with some rice or sometimes a sandwich or wrap.

Dinner: It just varies. Usually, it is some form of protein. I try to have tofu and paneer once a week as well. I try to have a light dinner if I had a late lunch.