Why Your Family Should Go Back To Eating Traditional Indian Food

Our current lifestyle is the reason we all suffer from so many medical problems. Kavita Devgan tells us why we need to make changes to our eating habits and our lifestyle and go back to our food roots. Swipe to learn more about how and why we can improve our family’s health

I truly believe that it’s the old, traditional rules of eating that can actually save our soul and body both in today’s toxic times. The need of the hour is to re-include them in our everyday living again and even more importantly teach them to our children who seem to be unfamiliar with them completely.

My new book Ultimate Grandmother Hacks talks about 50 of these age-old habits that were followed till even a generation or two back, but unfortunately are now getting elbowed out thanks to our single-minded obsession with convenience (over everything else).

The good news is that the world seems to be waking up to the goodness of the traditional Indian way of eating and living that were being followed earlier. After all, science as we know today is simply trying to catch up with many age-old wisdom and observation led beliefs that have are being followed since yesteryears.

Few rules of traditional eating that we must bring back in our life are:

Your grandpa probably always began his day with a freshly- squeezed half lemon in warm water. Why? Well, he may not have known the exact reason behind it. This simple drink restores the acid-alkali balance of the gut and thus, helps maintain the body’s internal ‘climate’ at a pH which supports healthy bacteria instead of the viruses and harmful bacteria (that thrive in an acidic environment). I guess he simply knew and felt that this simple ritual did him lots of good and therefore, followed it religiously.

Instead of relying on highly processed foods that are stripped of their nutrients, flavour, traditional diets celebrate the abundance of natural products, highlighting local foods, and home cooked food. With home-cooked food we rarely go wrong as everything right from the ingredients to the seasonings to the method of cooking are under our control. By sticking to fresh food and eating seasonal produce as this way one can ensure more nutrients (nutrients get lost on their way from farm to the table) and better taste (out of season foods don't taste that good).

Our elders believed that fruit should be had whole—with the fibre that comes in it. The juice was reserved only for times when one was sick, or for those who could not chew because of old age or other issues. Now, of course, we know that the fibre in fruits and vegetables helps the body use their goodness in the right place. In the case of juice, it only delivers a jug load of concentrated fructose that our body scampers to use up and ends up messing its insulin resistance along the process (besides hastening diabetes along the way).

You will be surprised to hear this but haldi is apparently the original probiotic. It soothes the stomach, strengthens digestion by improving intestinal flora, and when had along with high- protein foods, it assists in their digestion and prevents the formation of gas. Haldi doodh, anyone?

So instead of succumbing to mindless eating, microwaveable foods, or munching in front of the television, embracing the community aspect of traditional diets where people used to eat with each other and really enjoyed their food – can help us lead a healthier, happier, disease-free life.

For example, now we know why a little bit of ghee on the phulka (roti) is healthy for us and why drinking water first thing in the morning is such a good idea. Also why eating meals together on the dining table (with books closed /TV shut down) at fixed timings was non-negotiable earlier. 

Finally, I believe instead of looking at the latest superfoods doing the rounds, maybe first all we need to do is to begin emulating the way our ancestors ate, and also take a good look at our grandparents' cookbook and begin making and eating those recipes that have been handed down to them over the years.

Image Source: https://www.imagesbazaar.com

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