Healthy food habits

Dear Friends,

Health is wealth, an old age saying that we have been hearing quite too often but still it fails to attract attention as most of us are still believing in the new age saying “Wealth is health”.

We seldom give attention to our health and eating habits which is so important to manage the several organs of our body and their various functions which constitute the general well being of a person.

Gone are the days when we had set times for eating our breakfast, lunch and dinner that had wholesome meals. It had a proper assortments of cereals, pulses, vegetables, fish and fruit. All of these were cooked at home by our mothers, sisters or grandmothers or aunties especially when it was a joint family.

Now work pressures and times, studies and preparation, sports and other extra curricular activities that also include using our cell phones have eaten into and taken a major chunk out of our eating times and also the preparation time. So all the 3 eating times put together have been reduced to under an hour.

So we have situations wherein once in a week at home or daily lunches at work we might be using food prepared at hotels by people who are rarely connected to us like our relations. It seems everywhere, the mantra is to make money at the expense of others and in this case their health too. Food prepared in hotels seems tasty with a lot of spices and what nots added and unhealthy oils that are re-used many times over to cut down costs at the hotel side but that only leads to major costs that we need to bear at the hospital end later as time progresses and such unhealthy food practices continue.

Every week we hear of hotels being raided and health officials closing down such hotels that do not adhere to standards by the health authority. But still we persist in eating from outside just to save an hour at home cooking and spend countless hours in hospitals thinking we will be always immune from all of this.

A lot of hotel and junk food brings on various diseases that are both water borne and from the putrefied food prepared in unhealthy environments. How many of us care to visit the restaurant kitchen or at least peek into them as we wait for our food. That could have been time well spent as we waited for the so called delicacies that they served. A variety of diseases like food poisoning, jaundice, acidity, stomach ulcers, liver, heart  and kidney diseases spring out of the potions that we considered harmless as we ate them from such poorly prepared food.

Corruption has seeped into all types of food that we cook and that includes high pesticide farmed vegetables and fruits. Sometimes we wonder whether the consumer is also considered as a pest by such farmers who are least bothered about who ate their produce. So care should be exercised in consuming these.

So let us summarize what can be habits that we can follow to improve our food habits.

  1. Eat regularly. Do not skip a meal especially your breakfast.
  2. Drink sufficient water that your body needs to remain hydrated.
  3. Have a mix of cereals, pulses, vegetables and common fruits in your diet.
  4. While having food, do not be distracted by other things, chew properly and enjoy it.
  5. Have home cooked food as possible or search for good restaurants in your locality if you cannot have food from home.
  6. Do not eat at unearthly hours and that too junk food prepared by junkies.
  7. Drink hot water at hotels and clean water at home. There is no point in having the best food had with unpalatable water.
  8. Exercise properly or walk at least for half an hour daily whenever you get the chance.
  9. Always maintain a proper posture while eating, that is eat at the table and not on the sofa.
  10. Remain at peace with yourself and others so that the digested food is put to good use.

 

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The Lost Garden

It was an October evening and there on the playground made green by the lush grass and the receding rains were butterflies hopping from one shrub to another on the lookout for that elusive flower that could provide some nectar.

A group of children were huddled together making huts of mud and sticks where the sticks came from twigs, discarded ice cream sticks and dried branches. In that group were budding potters, architects, masons and designers. They surveyed their creation and now made walls of clay. They planted some twigs that now looked as trees in the tiny courtyard. In that group was a boy who was telling stories of long lost kings and warriors to eager ears as the huts were being built.

The sun which was shining so bright on glazed leaves when they had started off was now beating a hasty retreat behind the large block of buildings in which they lived. A miniature well was getting dug and some kid brought water from the nearby tank and poured it into it only to see it disappear. The next generous lot of water persisted in the freshly dug well to make things look complete. They surveyed their creation and sat for some time as the storyteller among them was fast finishing his story partly because it was getting dark and also it was getting difficult to feed his imagination that was now running wild as the script.

There was some sand that had been dumped for construction by a shop long back and this was used by another group of kids who were designing roads and tunnels across and over it.

A puddle of water made by the overflowing tank in the morning had some kids busy digging canals and launching paper boats. This all looked funny to elders and adults surveying the group below from floors above but nevertheless it meant so much to the children who always descended on this play field and got creative every day to make most of the strip of land to feed their imagination.

With the disappearance of such strips of land in metro cities, imagination that was once put to constructive use in such a lost garden, was now restricted to new games that came up for the new generation…

Wonderful foggy night scene at a playground, BBD Bagh, Kolkata, India
Brett Cole Photography

 

Diwali musings

Diwali is round the corner; that is when I thought of writing this post to re-live good old memories in the seventies and early eighties in a now bustling metro city named Mumbai, or for that matter, Bombay to the so called old timers like me.

For us children, days were divided into 3 parts. One was definitely school time, another was playtime and the third was holiday time that came in the form of winter and summer holidays and to some like me who lived in Bombay, the Diwali holidays.

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The lanterns hung up by most households with a variety of shapes and colors was fun to watch and compare. In every household, family members and neighbors would chip in to prepare sweets for Diwali and that would include Laddu , Shankarpali, Chivda, Bombay mix, the Chaklis(muruks for tamil/malayalees) and the good old Karanji. Purchasing the raw materials was a daunting task in itself to prepare all such sweets at home. The preparation used to take a few days after which we used to exchange samples of these with our neighbors who used to give us what they had prepared.

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The earthen lamps that used to grace all homes during this festive occasion was another pretty sight to all in the late evenings.

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The colorful rangoli patterns on the floor outside every door was a marvel. The whole town was painted with new colors outside each door step bringing out the artist in each household.
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This also used to give a divine aura to the surroundings and everyone from the children to the elders with pretty new clothes bedecked with jewelry was always a pretty sight to watch. The illumination was also seen on each face, the innocent joy on children’s as they lighted up crackers and looked at each other. Each group of houses was, a city into itself, plunged in celebrations. The crackers and other fireworks used to light our lives in the night and create a headache for the elderly. With the earthen diyas, the illuminated rangoli designs, the lanterns, and the shooting crackers, Diwali definitely lives up to its name of Festival of Lights. Though the main festival lasted 5 days, for us, it was as long as our sweets, crackers and the vacations lasted.

Here is wishing you, all my readers, who are getting ready for the festival of lights, a prosperous, happy and safe Diwali..

My Quotes

Do not multi-task when kids talk to you. You have their undivided attention. Why should you divide yours?

When you ask a question, listen to the answer. Any attempt to estimate the impact of your question would make you inattentive…

Man is immortal till his mortal remains are immersed…

Nobody can write us off until the person who wrote our script wipes us out…

Follow someone whom you can follow not someone whose thoughts are shallow and appearance bereft of any halo..

Check your impulse while you drive lest somebody finds you with no pulse…

Hoarders confine their wealth in vaults. After several years they are confined to vaults…

When you are hanging on to dear life, it is the hope that things would improve that acts as the rope…

It is time we stopped looking for loose change while giving to the needy. The world has depreciated and that you need to appreciate..

It is easy to cook by reading a book but not that easy to book a crook…

A person with an inflated ego does not sink in water, he floats and makes himself visible till somebody punctures it…

When a stray dog comes to your door, you bark at him and he scoots whereas when you arrive at a house and a dog barks then it’s your turn…

As you walk in the dark on the road, it is only the toad who is aware of your crush-load…

When you rush to catch a train, a train of thoughts has already started running inside you…

Life has its up and downs but the problem is everybody pulls you down when you are up and nobody pulls you up when you are down. .

A person climbing up a mountain should never look down because every pride has a fall…