Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Say NO to deep-fried foods

Indian cooking is full of various fried dishes from Pakodas, samosas, kachoris, namkeen sev, bhujiya (usual savory snacks) etc. to poori and bhaturas (fluffed, deep fried flatbreads) to bhajiya & vadas(deeo fried dumplings); fried foods are everywhere.

Reasons to avoid Deep fried products

1. Full of fat- The amount of fat/oil exceeds far beyond the daily needs of an average person. Excess fat accumulates in the body over a period of time and leads to obesity. Such people are more prone to metabolic syndrome and heart diseases.

2. Deadly- Repeated frying (a common practice in India) makes the oils smoke and changes the properties of the oil. Overheating leads to production of deleterious compounds like acrylamide, acrolein, etc. which are extremely damaging to the body.

3. Salted- Salt is necessary in our diet but we are getting too much of it. This is evident by the increasing number of patients with high blood pressure. Most of the fried foods are salted. One can reduce salt in diet simply by saying goodbye to fried stuff.

Should we just give it up? That's next to impossible!!
No, as always moderation in eating and regular exercise is the key.
You may go ahead and eat some fried foods, but occasionally.

What oils are healthy? Which are best for frying? How to make best use of it??
We'll discuss all these in the upcoming post..so keep reading.
Any queries are welcome.

Friday, January 20, 2012

5 Superfoods from our kitchen

"Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without. – Buddha"

Most of us seek a miracle cure for our ills. There are a lot of "Superfoods" in the shelves of the supermarkets today which claim eternal health. But why look at the supermarket, when you can find them in your own kitchen??

Here's a list of some natural superfoods:

1. Yogurt- Forget that prebiotic drink. Home made dahi/curd is a good source of pro & prebiotics which protects the gut and helps the immune system. It provides with a rich source of calcium, protein and is easily to digest.

2. Sprouted grains- Give your kids these grains for increasing protein in their diet. It provides easy to digest proteins (as it has active plant enzymes), micronutrients and fiber. Not to mention that you need variety for kids to eat well. They can be sun-dried and pounded to make baby food too!

3. Seasonal Fruits- Apart from giving us the taste of the season they enrich us with essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

4. Nuts- These are rich source of the "good" fats and also rich in micronutrients. A variety of Indian dishes incorporate these, especially in winters. Oilseeds like white Nigella seeds ( safed til)are also a rich source of minerals.

5. Spices and Condiments- Though they can't be classified as 'Food'; they are an integral part of our cooked recipes. Their benefits have been proven eg. Haldi/Turmeric is a household antibiotic and Danamethi/Fenugreek seeds helps in regulating blood sugar.