Kareena Kapoor wants you to replace expensive superfoods with Indian ingredients
The actress just cannot understand our fascination with goji berries
The one philosophy Kareena Kapoor followed religiously throughout her pregnancy — and during her post-pregnancy weight loss — was to find out what regimen suited her body and follow it. In a Facebook Live chat, Kareena and dietician Rujuta Diwekar addressed her remarkable 12 kg weight loss and what she did to get there.
During the chat, Kareena reiterated the importance of customising your diet regimen instead of blindly following health and diet trends from around the world. The new mother admitted she was perplexed by our continued fascination with western superfoods. “People feel that just because it’s expensive and it has come from the west, it must automatically be more effective,” Kareena said, recalling a Gwyneth Paltrow interview where the Hollywood star promoted the benefits of sorghum (jowar). Kareena laughingly admitted that Rujuta had been cajoling her to eat jowar rotis for a while, and now that Gwyneth had approved it, the grain would be the next big trend.
The one superfood she has not been able to wrap her head around is the goji berry. “I don’t know where they have come from and now they’re everywhere,” she said. For your information, goji berries are a rich source of antioxidants and Vitamin C, but can easily be substituted with amla (Indian gooseberry).
Rujuta, for her part, insisted that we stop looking at food as protein, carbohydrate and fat, and instead, start looking at food as farmer, trader and consumer. “Eat foods that don’t just promote your health, but also the health of your local economy,” she advised.
Maybe it’s all best summed up by Shilpa Shetty’s comments from a recent interview, “It’s best to stop running behind white foods and eat foods we’ve grown up with.”
Indian substitutes for popular superfoods
Finding local substitutes for globally trending superfoods can be tricky. Allow nutritionist Kinita Kadakia Patel to help you find an Indian alternative that you can add to your diet.
The virtues of coconut oil cannot be stressed enough, and Kinita agrees. "We shunned it for long time and now the world wants its hands on it. This oil is taking the limelight with its fast absorbing properties giving instant energy to many and helping in amplifying a slow metabolic rate," she says. She has a word of advice, though. "Always look out for VCO- Virgin Coconut Oil versions to get the maximum benefits."
"Lately every food is enhanced with Chia like breads, milkshakes, juices, biscuits etc," says Kinita, adding that these seeds have been around for centuries as sabja seeds. "Unfortunately, we have just recently understood its benefits," she says. According to her, these seeds are multi-taskers. "Its high protein, cooling and acts a great gut cleanser." There you go.
"This grain has got the attention for being light, crunchy, gluten-free and containing approximately 8 grams of protein in a cooked 1-cup serving (more than any other cereal). Unfortunately, it is expensive, not grown in India and not readily available," says Kinita. All's not lost yet, she has a few suggestions for ingredients closer to home that will give you same benefits, like barley (jav), jowar and amaranth (rajgira). "When consumed in combination with dals and pulses, you’ll even be able to exceed the required protein content. So if you can afford Quinoa, great! If you can’t the Indian versions are equally super," she says.