How RELEVANT are Nani-Dadi ki recipes?
Anybody who suggests following age-old recipes is right as long as you are physically active. I always say this, I love dadi-nani recipes ad they will stay relevant forever. In fact, my dad tells me a lot about dadi's recipes and how therapeutic they were. My dadi had a special remedy for headache. She would make a big roti - cooked only one side and this was her go-to remedy for headache. She would tie this warm roti around the head and go to bed. The headache was gone!!!!!
A simple mixture of jaggery and warm ghee post-lunch was our favorite dessert prepared by dadi. Sometimes she would throw in peanuts, little amount of fennel or ajwan and give us those nutty brittles that were soft and oh so yumm!!!! Every night she would soak poppy seeds in milk and crush them the next morning and give us that milk.
My nani and dadi used to get up at 3 am and hit the bed around 8 pm.
What is our lifestyle routine? They did not have any source of sedentary entertainment - no television, no mobile, no smartphone,,,,
When do we hit the bed and get up?
Purity was a bliss then - everything was pure
No doubt, what they used to eat then was pure, home grown, unrefined, and natural. Are we getting the same stuff today?
Dadi nani's snacks were simple - my nani was a specialist in gobhi pakoda and she would always make that for us. Besides, she would make besan chilla...her lacha paratha was world famous...her method to make that laboriously would get anybody's salute in these times....her simple sabziz and curries, her kheer, her achaar, her paneer,,,,everything was a bliss
As kids, we were more than happy with these snacks. Today, our snacks have become westernized - pizza, burger, frozen stuff, processed food, blah blah....
The environment those days was pure. Today, it is vitiated. I tell you, environmental stressors play a BIG role in your health.
Today, almost every other person is vitamin D deficient. Ever wondered why?
We are not spending time in the sun - our major source of the sunshine vitamin. We are staying indoors and this is playing havoc with our lives.
Every act was a labor of love
Back then, everyone was physically active. In fact, every single activity was a labor of love then.
People would walk, walk, and walk to go to the market, visit temples, travel from one place to another by foot. In fact, my dad tells that my dadi would walk miles everyday to cater to her kids needs (because her husband had expired at a young age). How active are we today compared to the people of those times?
We have all sorts of luxuries today - we drive to the markets, we take the elevator instead of walking the stairs (but I prefer the staircase to the lift or elevator), we are no longer social, we remain confined to our homes and offices, our work life is primarily sedentary, which is to be blamed for most of the ills in our lives, and what we get today is adulterated.
I will give you a simple example. Back then, biscuits were widely popular and that too, atta ghee biscuits.
One person in the community was a specialist in making biscuits and he wuld be responsible for that. So the community would place their biscuit orders with that person - because he/she sold pure stuff. Impurity was a bad dream then. Rarely would adulteration sneak into food in those days. We used to order our biscuits from that single person - in fact, everyone would....gradually, the taste that we used to enjoy has disappeared even though my mama brings the same biscuits from the same person's family. What does that show?
Commercialization has killed health
Everything is commercialized now. In fact, the biscuits you get outside these days are another name for adulterated, unhealthy, processed stuff that you SHOULD NOT give to your families. Everything is commercialized these days. Our life revolves around the click of a button. It is only going to get worse as humans progress and strive ahead of times.
Back then, life was really different . I wish we were present in that age - they toiled hard for the basic necessities.
Even for water, they had a hand pump to draw out water. In fact, when I was a little kid, we had a pump at home and that would serve our water needs. It was really hard work - cardio workout to draw out water from the pump.
Gradually, life changed. Tap water and supply water invaded our lives. Then it was the turn of motors, tulu pumps, JET pumps, submersibles and blah blah.......where are we heading? Everything is near to automated. So my point is- nani dadi ka khana khazana is really khazana if you can toil hard and remain physically active. You can eat as much of ghee as you want as long as your body can use all that into energy.
We do not want the excess to deposit in our liver as fat or float in our blood cholesterol. We have an alarming number of people falling prey to heart diseases, kidney failures, liver cirrhosis, colon cancer, obesity, diabetes, thyroid, PCOS, breast cancer, and what not. This really scares me.
Stress kills- we are stressed than ever
We are a lot more STRESSED these days compared to people in those days - who were only concerned about making ends meet. Contrarily, we are fighting and competing against every other person, which only builds up stress in our lives. Stress is bad !!!
Think of school children - the burden on their shoulders is immense and the level of stress only increases with age. What is this stress doing to their lives/health?
An increasing number of children are diabetics today. Isn't that scary? An alarming number are being diagnosed with various metabolic disorders, cancer, thyroid, and dental issues.
So what about nani-dadi ki recipes?
I love nani dadi ka khana khazana. I would love to go back to that age and follow their lifestyle. But can I?
Life has transformed!! Our priorities have changed.
I wish we could turn the clock back and go back to those times. No doubt, we are more powerful and affluent these days, and this has had an adverse impact on our health.
We want to eat what our nanis and dadis used to but without putting that much labor.
We have excellent medical facilities now compared to those times but the number and types of diseases have ballooned as well.
I am in no way against nani-dadi ki recipes. In fact, old is gold and will continue to be relevant forever because after all, we are emotional about our grandparents and their nuskhee.
So eat what your body can digest. Eat everything that your body allows. Avoid any fad diets. Follow your heart and tell yourself to workout. Please do not go vegan unless you are really concerned for animals. Do not go gluten-free unless you are actually allergic.
Your body is bound to suffer from different vitamin and mineral deficiencies. It is going to take a toll on your health. It would only become worse. Reviving your health would become a dream.
Do not eliminate anything unless you find a nutritional equivalent.
if we really want to tread nani dadi ka rasta, then we need to forget every single luxury item, food, and lifestyle that we have got today and tread the path of nanis and dadis. It won't hurt us. It won't harm us then. Can we do that?