I have a friend who is rapidly disappearing, one is almost disappeared and another who is thinking of taking the plunge. They have it in their minds that they need to look shriveled and not healthy, lose weight rather than eat healthy and exercise and most importantly think about it all the time. Why do people go on diets? For one thing it is too much of a strain on the brain, trying to calculate all those calories, trying to figure the percent fat, protein, carbs in each food then trying to figure out how much calories you need today. There is one important reason that my math teacher failed to insist upon when she was waxing eloquently about the lifelong gains that we would have see from studying mathematics. And the second thing is it wastes too much time. ou go shopping for groceries, stopping at each and every aisle for minimum of 10 mins examining the ingredient list, calculating, comparing, with furrowed brows rapidly scan the list, grab another compare the two then grab yet another one and compare that with the previous two, then put don all three and grab a fourth which has the words whole grain, complete grain, bird seeds or tastes like mud written on it. I am not by any means critiscing people for taking care of their weight or being careful about what they eat. In a rapidly growing country in ways other than the economic sense, it is very very essential for good food habits to be cultivated. But sometimes there is a tendency to take things to the other extreme. I am not sure if we were naive or unworldly or just plain ignorant, somehow in India I was never exposed to the weighty problems of excess adipose tissues. I have always been going around as my doctor so subtly put it “a slightly larger frame” but a lot has to do with genetics. Don’t think I am just taking the easy excuse. I know my genetics especially when they are walking around as clear as daylight. Maybe it had to do with all the walking I did or the proper 3 mother made meals a day, I never found it to be a problem until I came here. I cook, so watching the TV and gulping the indiscernible contents on the plate seems like fun. But I have not been barraged with the reduce weight in minutes ranging from 15 to 120, and a wide varitey of contorsions to which if I subject my body, I am promised I can loose all my belly fat and tone each and every muscle in just under a month…GASP!!! but then they also ask me to stick to whole wheat bread, no milk products, no carbs, limited fat and most importantly a whole lot of green salad. I am vegetarian true blue one who eats milk and milk products, but even for me a green lunch is as tasty as chewing on a piece of rotten bark. As my very learned father said, there is a reason why we stopped walking on four legs, so that we could take a break from grazing. There is fun in pouring some gingelly oil, grinding coconut, jeera, red chilli, coriander seeds and a little hing. Chopping some onions till they brown up and throwing the spinach into it with the ground stuff along with a handful of boiled lentils. That is what I consider food and I have my parents backing me up for it. My parents were pretty liberal when it came to foods, no fuss, no hold backs, they are and were very active people and found no reason to stop eating good food. There is ofcourse the famous incident when my mother valiantly proclaimed that she was going to go on a fruits only diet for one meal a day and she figured dinner was the best. So for three days she munched on a every fruit my father laid his hands on in the fruit shop. My father being the man he is showed his supoort by doing the same. So life went on. One night my dad wakes up at around 2.00 to go grab a drink, when he spots the kitchen light. Alarmed he tips toes slowly to see my mother furiously mixing rice with “Onion Sambhar and making curd” She exclaimed and declares she is officialy back to eating normal food. She couldn’t do it anymore. Imagine my suprise when I wake up to nature’s screaming and find my mom and dad in the dining room with a candle light so as to not wake up anyone digging into food and some leftover cake for all the days they didn’t eat dinner. My father calls it the most romantic dinner in his life and my mother mouth full nods. As you can see there is a reason why I like my icecream and like eating it too. I do restrain myself every now and then that is and excercise regularly given the fact that there is nothing here in “Walking distance”. But I just can’t figure out why people would refuse to eat a perfectly good pizza, or a beautiful “Chunky monkey” or “Dulche de luche”. I am not saying hog, I am saying know what you want and eat what you want not what you wish you had or how much you wish you could eat. I find Good Food Indian or otherwise had sitting down on a table with family and friends is the best diet there ever was, and don’t forget to eat the fruits in the end.
July 22, 2006
The case of the Disappearing Friend!!