ready to eat soups

In this fast paced world, we are constantly bombarded with jazzy ads, glamorous models and celebrities and of course glittering products that claim to be the only choice for a better living. While I agree that many may be such right choices and some are definitely NOT.
Most of the times we also feel that we are in complete control of our emotional dynamics and that these ads do not affect us. But let me tell you that these ads DO affect us in some way or the other and that’s the reality.
But while the ads and the scores of ad men and women are doing their job relentlessly, isn’t it our prerogative to choose wisely for the sake of our health..?
Most of the times we are so enamoured in our own myths especially about their health and more so about their diets. But then, while the ads are doing what these are supposed to do, let us do our own thing…
Take one of the commonly used products…dried soup mixes! All the soup mix advertisements claim how very healthy, tasty, yummy and easy to prepare these concoctions are. But do we really take a hard look at the ingredients of these ready-to- serve soup mixes..? Let me focus on that….. If we look at the ingredients, all dried soup mixes contain lots of salt, hidden sugar, fillers, preservatives, corn flour, few pieces of dried veggies, colouring and flavouring agents. When I tried to analyze these ingredients, to my surprise, I didn’t find any nutritional value in this so called healthy soup… How these soups could be a healthy, and nutritious supplement for the growing children, elders or even fit for healthy consumptions..? What I found in all these products 1 Corn flour or some other flour as thickening base 2 A few dried pieces of veggies 3 Preservatives, salt, flavouring n colouring agents, hidden sugar etc . I happened to even speak to a technologist who specialises in this area of food drying and what came out was while the drying process does retain some nutritional values of the original ingredient the process also likely to change the basic ‘Gunas’ values of the original. Now let us look at each of the ingredient independtly… First of all, corn flour is a big load of starch and high calorie food, which is not at all good for health. Dried veggie pieces are dried and dehydrated vegetables. This process of dehydration does reduce the certain amount of nutrients from the vegetables. And then how can these veggie pieces are healthy? Lastly the third group that is preservatives, colouring, flavouring agents, & salt are added to increase the shell life of the product and don’t have any nutritional benefits…… So if you people are hoping for good health or hoping to lose a few kilos of belly fat, with just a mug-full of soup…I congratulate all those jazzy ads for a job well done! But you are a serious reader of my blogs and conscious of your health, let me come back to you with some equally jazzy, yummy and healthy recipes of soups!

Dr. Manjiri Joshi

91 9403360452

leaves for serving and cooking

I always have praised Ayurved not merely because I am an Ayurvedic practitioner but the more I
study (yes, I still call myself a student of Ayurved, which in itself is a revelation every time I look up
for references. Ayurved is probably the only discourse that takes an absolutely holistic approach
to human lifestyle. In Ayurved, different plant leaves has been mentioned, for eating food from. It
also occurs to me that every time Ayurved recommends something for human health, it also takes
care of the environment. I look at it as eco friendly and conducive to the human society at large!
In this blog, I am sharing this gem from this ancient wisdom treasure with you all…
Ayurved Recommends using various tree- leaves for a few cooking methods like steaming and also to
eat food from. Some of you are familiar with the banana leaf which is often used to serve food on
during festivals and rituals. The most common practice of using the banana leaf for serving food can
be seen in parts of southern India and even some south Indian restaurants. Banana leaf contains
useful anti oxidants , which are automatically transferred when we consume food on banana leaf.
And when we steam and serve food on a banana leaf, along with aroma, we get useful anti oxidants
as well.
Similarly Ayurved also discusses the virtues of other tree leaves like the plantain , palasha leaf, hastikarni ,
arka (rui), erand , ketaki, and also petals of lotus all of which were being traditionally used for
consuming food during ancient times.
The use of a particular leaf, has been indicated to cure certain ailment and has different properties
from the other.
Let me share a few examples:
 Consuming food served in a plantain leaf is cordial, aphrodisiac and strengthening. It is
useful in treatment of toxicity and vatarakta.
 Food served in ‘Eranda’ leaf is greatly beneficial for eyes but at the same time aggravates
pitta too.
 Food served in the leaf of ‘Arka’ kills worms , treats many diseases and aggravates pitta.
 Food served in the leaf of ‘Hastikarni’ kills worms, hot in potency.
 Food served in the leaf of ‘ketaki’ is beneficial to the eyes.
 Food served in the petals of lotus is aphrodisiac, and is recommended for travellers.
 Banana leaf gives a fantastic aroma to the food n contains many useful anti oxidants.
Even if you keep aside the technicalities of the tree leaves in terms of human health, can you
imagine the aroma that your food will have besides reducing the usage of vessels and the burden of
cleaning and that too with chemicals..?
Eco friendly and yet yummy food ideas…isn’t it?

Dr. Manjiri Joshi