Help your family’s health with Almonds: Learn from Ayurveda and Nutritional Science!
Coimbatore, 3rd February 2022: Almond Board of California today hosted a virtual panel around the topic ‘Achieving holistic health with Ayurveda and Nutritional science’ featuring renowned actress Nisha GaneshNutrition & Wellness Consultant Sheela Krishnaswamyand Ayurveda expert Dr. Vishakha Mahindroo. The panel was moderated by RJ Shruthi.
Through the discussion, the panelists emphasized on the need to ensure better health for every family member by making health the first and foremost priority. Within this, the panelists spoke at length about the emphasis laid on diet, nutrition and eating right across all various health practices in India including Ayurveda and nutritional science.The discussion also delved into different belief systems pertaining to health that exist in India, and how several food habits are centered around those beliefs, and in many cases passed down through generations. During the discussion, as an example, the tradition of soaking and peeling almonds and sharing them with children, students, or elderly members in the family was also put forward. Almonds are believed to help in strengthening memory and add to overall nutrient intake of the family
The panelists also discussed the changes that have seeped into the Indian way of life in the past few decades, especially the increased influence of foreign food and cuisines, which have made way into our kitchens. Panelists spoke about thelong-term impact of regular consumption of these processed, calorie laden foods and snacks, and urged families to instead incorporate natural and traditionally favoured foods like almonds, millets, Amarnath, jowar, red rice amongst others. Panelists outlineddietary recommendations combining knowledge from Ayurveda and nutritional science, to make families understand how they can achieve better health by imbibing learnings from both. Within this, the panel spoke about the diverse benefits of regular almond consumption which feature prominently in Indian culture, family beliefs, ancient Ayurveda texts as well as modern nutritional science. As per Ayurveda, almonds are generally referred as ‘Vatada’ or ‘Badma’ or ‘Vatma’ and are considered to be ‘madhura’ or sweet and to have ‘snighdha’ or unctuous properties. In terms of their action on doshas (Dosha Karma), they are known as ‘vata-pittahara’ as they help reduce ‘Vata’ and ‘Pitta’ doshas and ‘kaphakara’ as they help increase kaphadosha and are used accordingly in cases of dosha imbalance. Looking at nutritional science, almonds are a nutritious snacking option and years of scientific research suggests that eating them regularly can offer multiple benefits across heart health, diabetes and weight management and skin health, amongst other benefits.
Renowned Indian television& film actress Nisha Ganesh said, “As a mother, wife, daughter in law, daughter or sister, there are many roles I play in my personal life, and my family’s health is always my topmost priority. To ensure their well-being, like many other moms in India, I have created my own system where I borrow learnings passed down through my family for generations, from Ayurveda and modern nutritional science. But, the one food item that you will always find in my kitchen is almonds.Since I have grown up hearing about the multiple benefits of almonds, I make sure that my entire family eats a handful of these nuts every day. This helps support my own and my family’s immunity as they are a source of copper, zinc, iron and Vitamin E – each of which are nutrients that contribute to growth, development, maintenance and normal functioning of the immune system. Inaddition to that, as per Ayurveda, eating almonds regularly is supposed to nourish the brain, nerve tissues and promotes the intellectwhich makes them a good snack for children.”
Ayurveda Expert, Dr. Vishakha Mahindroo mentioned, “I feel that in today’s world it’s important for families to pair the wisdom from Ayurveda along with learnings from modern nutritional science and incorporate natural foods in the diet to lead a healthier lifestyle. Eating a handful of almonds everyday is a perfect way to begin adopting this change to see the difference over time. Almonds have been considered to be good for health for thousands of years, and as Indians we have always relied on them for a variety of benefits. A lot of this belief stems from Ayurveda, which outlines that consuming almonds everyday can enhance muscle strength and bulk of body, stimulate the nervous system and improve a person’s complexion, protect the skin.”
Nutrition & Wellness Consultant Sheela Krishnaswamy added, “Maintaining good health should be a priority for one and all. And this can be achieved only by inculcating good dietary habits and snacking on natural and nutritious foods like almonds. Eating healthy will not only alleviate the mood and better manage a person’s weight, but also help lower the chances of developing chronic lifestyle diseases such as type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Almonds in particular are a great choice, as they are one of the easiest foods to eat every day. Family members could soak and eat a handful in the morning, divide them in small portions and eat them through the day, or make different recipes by spicing them with Indian flavours. There may be an additional advantage of eating almonds regularly for those concerned about blood sugar. Research indicates that daily almond consumption may help manage blood sugar levels and improve cardiovascular markers in people with type 2 diabetes.”
Modifying dietary habits and making corrective lifestyle adjustments is one of the best ways for families to ensure better health in the long term. Besides feeling lighter, energetic and elevating the mood, a healthy lifestyle sustained over time canalso help in reducing the risk of chronic and lifestyle diseases which are on the rise in India. By making small dietary and lifestyle changes like incorporating nutritious and natural foods like a handful of almonds every day, families across India can make a healthy difference to their lives.