India is a diverse country with different languages spoken, traditional practices followed, leading to different cuisines. Mainly food served across India will amaze people all over the world .Since each senses will be awakened with the bust of flavors added in our food with utmost care taken to help our body digest it .For example a wholesome breakfast such as parathas or idli which was followed since ancient times has people believed it to pump their energy and keep them full. However from times, immemorial social get together, social meeting used to occur during the time of fairs and festivals.
Festivals are celebrated as mark of our most important sector that even today helps in collecting finance of nation called AGRICULTURE. Mostly all festivals are marked as harvest time or earlier it was marked as celebration of victory (good over evil) , good time after a testing phase .Often festivals today, is a sign of non-pressure(free from routine), social get together , family gathering . The most common binding agent is FOOD.
Food is a social, economic and integral part of festival which is often exchanged as part of ritual. Food is often prepared as sign of reward or punishment. It is especially got significance in our festivals where different combinations are prepared .Sweets , fried snacks , cuisines , everything that will relish our senses and with the company of our near and dear ones (Feasting) makes everyone happy and an unforgettable day !!!
This was a traditional practice which we follow with great enthusiasm and spread joy but with Today’s invasion of technology and different food practices, we are not able to strike balance between feast and normal routine pattern. Since earlier the purchasing power and availability was less frequent than today’s times .So that made it an exciting wait to look forward for the festival.
Traditionally, it was observed along with the seasonal changes .Feasting may not be as frequent as it is today where we celebrate often .With feasting ,a person’s ability to eat and the thought used to excite and people were able to have good quality and quantity. Today we are experiencing a reduction in both quality and quantity. However it’s good to feast since it will help to release a feel good factor which actually acts as our mood alleviators and helps in betterment of our health.
Before we plan for a feast, these points are to be followed:
· Prior to a feast, Ensure to follow a week long home cooked meals with good amount of fruits and vegetables.
· Hydration is the key to healthy digestion.
· Include good source of complete protein such as dairy and dairy products, eggs, fish, chicken, pulses, lentils, sprouts could be included.
· Use of oil /fat in moderation.
· Use of spices such as ginger, turmeric, lemon, garlic, pepper to be used as it helps in proper digestion along with bowel movement.
· Avoid all refined products.
Fasting is a religious practice followed by our grandmothers, mothers’ even great grandmothers where there was total avoidance of food to liquid or energy rich food was incorporated to rejuvenate our digestion and health with spiritual bond. Fasting is varied according to the religious principles’ some common fasting technique use of sun set /sunrise, with complete avoidance of water and food .However now a days it is allowed to have some liquid or in some faith, they allow energy dense foods such as potatoes, sabudana, vari are followed .Fasts are generally of two meals for one day, to longer periods. Certain scientific principles are proposed when certain excess amount are reduced from the normal intake helps a person gain better health. Fasting intermittently might help in effective improvisation of health. However there is always a trick before going on fast:
· Fast occurs at the start of the sunrise/sunset so it’s important to cleanse the system .So this could be achieved through use of Luke warm water prior day.
· During the fast , it ‘s important to keep our energy levels so adding natural unrefined sugar , to the liquid will help.
· To keep the cravings it’s important to have a meal such as fruits such as banana, sapota (chikoo).
· During fast, the avoidance of wheat and rice change from the routine helps the liver to detoxify with inclusion of fruit infused drink.
· Vegetables with fiber to be included will help in following day’s bowel movement.
· Proper rest is encouraged.
It is optimum to have fast intermittently with liquids and energy dense than completely avoiding food and water .STAY HEALTHY!!!