FADS come and go regularly in most realms of human existence. The world of health and diets is no different. In recent times we have witnessed an exponential increase in the awareness and interest related to health and wellness through foods, which is why one can expect a great deal of hyped marketing focused on health this year as well. This is likely to bring in an almost mindless rush towards diet plans that are centered around exotic foods. I am, therefore, compelled to advise a bit of caution when it comes to exploring newer choices in food and diet. Don’t get carried away by a food only because it has an
exotic name and a premium price to match.
Last year, health conscious folks went for the avocado bhelpuri instead of the traditional version, which has raw mango in it. Contrary to common beliefs, the raw mango is loaded with beneficial nutrients. Perhaps it is time we elevated our desi foods to an exalted and exotic status a la the global foods.
This brings me to a related matter. Often we adopt lifestyles without paying attention to their attendant and damaging impact on the environment. It is thus time to think about sustainable food systems when we talk about healthy eating and make food choices that minimize environmental damage. Reducing the carbon footprint of our daily diets should be our primary concern.
Fortunately, the trend of favouring local and indigenous produce has begun to gain traction and many entrepreneurs have created links between the small-scale farmers and urban consumers. It is not just veggies but also milk, poultry and the traditional grains that are available in local farms.Any thoughts on food will surely tend to veer towards health.
With the Nipah and Zika viruses looming large over the health horizon, and with no cure in sight, it is prudent to devise preventive strategies. A time-tested means of achieving this is through one’s diet. I am a great believer in probiotic foods and the role of fibre in boosting our immune system and I expect to see more of the unpolished grains in the market this year.
Another health hazard comes in the form of stress. I expect a great deal of foucs on foods such as nutmeg, cumin, brahmi and saffron that help counter stress and depression. Few people actually eat right amount of vegetables and fruits leading to problems like hair loss, bleeding gums, infection and poor sleep among others. I urge you all to make raw fruits a snacking option in your daily diet.