Indian food is known to be spicy and the cooking is known to be unhealthy. For many years, diet conscious people and the health industry has been criticizing the Indian diet for being fattening and weight gaining. If you eat ghee you will be attempting for your double-chin to appear. If you eat more than one chapatti, are you even trying to eat healthily?
I remember girls during my high school bailing on their regular food because they thought their arms were not toned enough. Our mother would try to feed us up with milk. But, no, we were too health-conscious for dairy.
Coming back to recent times, are we still on that note? Let’s set you all to a discussion, where I will be sprinkling some light on a few facts and points about how you can maintain your health by your simple home-made food.
What is a healthy diet?
First thing first, what exactly is a healthy diet? Before explaining every bit of a healthy diet, let me clear the doubt that Indian food is no way fattening if consumed properly. It is full of health, nutrition and a simple to follow. It is away from any kind of complication and of course full of taste.
A lot of us, try to follow the diet of corn-flakes and then out of boredom, land up at the roti sabzi all –over again. No worries, cause our Indian food is well-equipped to provide the necessary nutrition very easily.
Each age group has its requirements for nutrition. A child needs more protein, calcium, carbohydrate and fat-rich diet to endure the active lifestyle. Similarly, as per Nation health portal, India, a healthy diet for an adult, an infant and pregnant or lactating mother will vary accordingly.
Tips to stay healthy with home-style food
Your whole-some nutrition is hidden among your simple daal-roti. It is more than just filling to eat. Each food carries its benefits. Let’s walk through a list of mundane but healthy home-style food and their benefits
Dal or pulses
Basic daal, any one of the many can be your ultimate source of daily proteins. It is also rich in minerals like calcium, iron and potassium, vitamin A, B, C, and E. If you are on a slimming regimen, add a bowl full of daal cooked with less oil in your diet along with regular exercise and it will make you lose weight without preparing any fancy platter or complicated dish. Your favorite, Rajma or kidney beans will become even more favorable to you if you will know about the health benefits it carries.
Roti or Chapatti
Chapatti is something which when combined with a tasteful vegetable or gravy, works as an instant stomach filler. That is because the wheat roti consumed regularly in Northern India is rich in fiber which means healthy and good for digestion. A lot of people also love grabbing a few parathas as the first thing in the morning. Instead of oil spilled parathas, go for a roti (add a tablespoon of ghee if you like, it’s completely healthy).
Today, Atta or wheat flour is not the limitation. Types of other healthy flours including multi-grain Atta is also available. This is even more healthy and nutritious.
Choose your rice
Those white grains of rice are a complete package of taste. We eat them in the form of heavenly pulao or even when complemented with daal, they taste no less than a great meal. Rice has been criticized for being unhealthy due to high carbs presence in them. But, they can be alternated by the now well-known brown rice. They are more nutritious and contain plenty of fiber in it. Even then if you crave white rice, eat half of your regular serving (one cup will be of no harm).
Power of Paneer/cottage cheese
Paneer is another favorite dish of most Indians, vegetarians hog on it and even non-vegetarians are not any less fond of it. Paneer is full of protein, and calcium as it is made from milk. It can be made from full-cream milk if bought from the market. So, to avoid those extra calories. Prepare it at home and enjoy a food full of taste and health.
Talking about milk products, Dahi is another Indian superfood that is a must to add in your regular diet. Fermented foods are good for your digestion, so is the curd. It is rich in calcium, vitamin B complex. It will activate your digestive enzymes and you consecutively will lose weight with high metabolic functioning. Add it as a side in your lunch, churn it a little to make Lassi/buttermilk out of it.
Dahi is a must for Indian summers. It cools you down during the scorching heat and you function even better in the odd weather.
Ghee/ clarified butter
Oh! Talk about ghee and all you can think is ‘fat’ ‘fat’ and ‘fat’. But, bursting the bubble of myth. Ghee is the treasure of Indian cuisine which when complemented with an active lifestyle and regular exercise can do miracles to your waistline. Add a teaspoon of it in your breakfast or lunch and it will be the new best friend of your skin and healthy gut.
Indian food is based on the use of spices. Each spice carries its benefits. Starting with turmeric, it is a great antioxidant, anti-septic, it increases the taste of your food and adds a tempting color to it. All the other spices are known for their benefits. So, do not restrict yourself from a controlled amount of spice your food.
Our ancestors have been eating traditional home-made food as simple as daal-roti. They did not have access to exotic vegetables and grains or processed diet food. They grew their food, which was away from any kind of sprays and chemicals. The secret to their long lives was to eat home-style organic food. So, we also can get the key to fitness by following this simple diet and stay healthy.