This is not about what you should be eating for a healthier you. Nor does it rave about yet another new innovation which magically transforms you into a super you. This merely highlights a few seemingly harmless habits that has slowly crept up on us, which are bound to negatively impact us over the years. So, in no particular order:
- Having filling milkshakes and smoothies with big, rich meals – more like two meals in one, don’t you think? Water!!!
- Ordering the same familiar items – take a chance on something different, it could be good for you, AND you could actually like it.
- Try new places – with new eateries opening all the time, there is a pretty good choice of places and what to eat. And restaurants are more accommodating of special requirements these days.
Sauces, Artificial flavourings, Additives
- Adding various sauces (tomato, bbq, chilli) to already tasty food, like hedhika. Think of all the sugar and various artificial ingredients in them. To spice it up, why not choose a hot sauce which does not have much more than chilli and salt?
- Flavour sachets in instant noodles packets – increasingly used by many to give their meals an extra kick, but worrying when you consider all the artificial flavourings, etc. Fresh lime, onion and raw chilli, anyone?
- Likewise, I’m not a fan of masmirus. I absolutely agree that thelli faiy and thelli mirus are fantastic, especially with rice and garudhiya. But why not fresh muranga or any other leaves, and a variety of raw chilli, the ultimate being githeyomirus?
- Cooking with ready-made sauces and creams – think herbs and seasoning for a change.
- Energy drinks! When did energy drinks and supari become breakfast? With so much recent focus on the dangers of energy drinks, it is still worryingly common amongst many. By the way, why do these drinks provide enough energy to crush the empty can, but not to dispose of it in a more responsible way than tossing it over the shoulder (my do-not-litter mode is on).
- Soft drinks – nothing like a cold, cold can or bottle to temporarily ease that thirst on a hot, hot day. But the sugar! And again, the multitude of artificial ingredients. Thankfully, watermelon, passion fruit, orange and lime juices are now available in most cafés. As is kurumba fani or fen.
Your Lifestyle and Meal Times
- We constantly hear about the importance of eating a good breakfast, but are too rushed in the mornings. And then compensate by eating whatever we can grab, whenever we can. And what’s most readily available is a far cry from what we really need.
- Eating late at night – easy to fall into the habit, especially when working late night shifts, but make the effort to eat earlier and see if you don’t feel much better for it.
- Rethink meals to suit your lifestyle – if you like mashuni and roshi but never have the time in the morning, make it for dinner. Why not?
- Fruits or chocolate and ice cream in the fridge – if it’s more likely you’d reach for what is nearest, what would make sense to stock up at home?
Just Enjoy Food
- Going for extremes – try not to make a fuss about every single thing you eat; that’s just exhausting. Just be aware of what you eat.
- Eating healthy does NOT mean leafy salads, and if you actually crave something, have it – very often we have other lesser evil things to avoid what we really want, but end up giving in to that craving anyway.
- One last thing. While it is hospitable to offer food to your guests, please, do not coax them into eating one more bite of anything – so many are trying to be health conscious, so respect their refusal to eat more.
Words by Fasah Ahmed