The holiest month of the Hindu calendar, Shravan, is here. It’s when the churning of the ocean and search for the nectar took place. Legends aside, many wonder-foods are recommended in this month for the detoxification of the body. Here are the top three.
- Banana flour: Traditionally used by the coastal people of India to make adais, dosa, thalipeeths, even mithais. Food academics now recognise it as a pre-biotic, which means it develops the infrastructure for your gut to retain the probiotic bacteria. Earlier sold only by small women’s cooperatives, it now occupies space on health food counters as ‘gluten-free’. Made from sun-dried raw banana, it is used in heritage recipes to help the body store more calcium. Good for all those with weak stomachs—from infants to seniors or those who have ruined their stomachs with crash dieting.
- Peanuts: There isn’t a single item that’s used for upavas (fasts) that doesn’t include peanuts. Rich in mono-unsaturated fats and reservatol (the same nutrient which helped wine gain its heart-healthy reputation), it’s known for its appetite-regulating properties. It is much needed, as it’s easy for us to overeat sabudana khichdi and vadas. The next time you are going to a party where you fear you may overeat, just chew on a handful.
- Coconut: Rich in the all-important fatty acid called Lauric acid, coconut is known for its properties to provide the body with physical stamina and the mind with calm. Lauric acid, also found in human breast milk, is an anti-bacterial and anti-viral agent. Moreover, studies link coconut to a low waist to hip ratio and coconut oil today is where virgin olive oil was a few years ago—toast of every weightloss diet.