Germs are not always at fault for our illness

Most of us blame the germs when we fall sick. That may not be always the case. Sure, maintaining a proper hygiene is important, but the state of our mind also plays a major role in our lifestyle. For instance, we all have a friend who is “on a diet”. But the moment they go for a cheat meal, we have to listen to their guilt and rants. Turns out, if you feel guilty because you were trapped by a slice of chocolate cake, you are more likely to gain weight. But if you cherish that delicious, soft and moist slice with no regrets, you are more likely to be happy (this doesn’t mean you can devour one everyday). Similarly, people who worry too much about hygiene, are more likely to fall ill. The focus has to be on boosting your immunity and  maintaining a good diet, not on the germs which are everywhere and can’t even be seen.

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Sorry, can’t drink tea. I am on a diet.

I am sure we must have heard this statement like a hundred times. People who want to lose weight restrict themselves, or at least try their level best, from consuming calories.  Most of them prefer switching to herbal tea since it increases the body metabolism and burns fat. Fat oxidation increases, reduces risk of getting cancer, boosts immunity, helps to concentrate, brings down sugar level, lowers chances of heart disease, et cetera. So is there a need to exercise? Why not just consume herbal tea like 10 times a day? Well, if only things were that easy. Green tea does help, but it is vital to exercise and maintain a healthy diet. But if you crave for a bar of chocolate, after all who does not, here’s a way to devour it without feeling any guilt. Just have it immediately after you work out, or an hour before you work out. Because that’s when your metabolism is high and it burns the calories instead of storing it as fat. Life just got easier.  So you exercise, drink herbal tea and maybe cheat sometimes by breaking the no-junk-food rule.

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How about a slice of “organic” Red Velvet Cake?

From time to time, we all ache for a rich, creamy and buttery slice of red velvet cake. Funny thing is, this dessert does not have its own flavour. It is just red food colouring. How about we replace this food colouring with a natural agent? Say beets or raspberries. Just boil them and get natural colouring. These are more friendly for your dessert and your body will be grateful to you. Synthetic colouring can cause allergies, bladder cancer and brain tumours. Now you can enjoy that cake without getting worried about how it can harm you……except the calories maybe. For orange, you can use carrots. This veggie gives a deep orange colour. Yellow can be made by using turmeric or saffron flowers. Normally, we do not use green food colouring but spinach will get the best results. For blue and purple, you can take red cabbage, blueberries or blackberries. All these tactics make your food look and taste beautiful. And if you choose organically grown vegetables, even better! You’re in for a healthier lifestyle.

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Why organic?

Let us go straight out with this. Organic is the way ahead. With Organic Wellness you can be rest assured that we believe that organic is indeed the way forward. The next and the main question is, why should we choose organic products? We should choose it because it’s a healthy and a much viable option. It can be the next big thing in the world if you want it to be.

How do you get it to be the next big thing?

It’s simple.

Consume organic fruits and vegetables. It will help you in the long run and as a matter of fact, who will not want to be healthy?

Organic farming is another thing which pops up in the mind. Not using the pesticides and insecticides will do the world a whole lot of good.

Basically all of you will have an idea by now. The idea being, choose wisely. Give it a nice thought. Think about both the sides. What is good in this and that as well as bad in this and that.

And at the end of the day, life is shaped by the choices you make. Good or bad, it’s your choice.

Choose wisely.

Mayuk Kumar

The writer is a student at Jindal Global Business School. 

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The Acquisition of Taste

We all know that every person has different tastes when it comes to different objects, therefore we gravitate towards people or objects that carry similarities with our own choices. Yet, a glaringly obvious gravitation misses the mark when we are talking about the similarities and the association with the known.

Alcoholic beverages, we all know them, we’ve all had them. No one escapes alcohol in today’s world, it’s in your cough syrup, which means if you had a bottle of cough syrup, you’ve probably have had about 2 beers worth of alcohol. Ever wondered about the taste of cough syrups? How did they get from all bitter and repulsive to the first thing you go for when you’ve got a sore throat? How did that happen?

A similar situation arises when in a relatively social event, a friend asks you to ‘give it a shot’ and you consume your first strong alcoholic beverage and are overtaken by the bitter taste and cannot help but blurt out, How/Why do you guys drink this? It is so bitter. Then they blurt out the golden words that are the basis of this particular piece of writing, “Dude, it is an acquired taste.”

True enough, although most people would still describe strong alcoholic drinks still, as bitter and repulsive, the relatively lighter ones have become ‘tasty,’ much like our dear childhood friend, the cough syrup. This phenomenon is called taste masking, using alcohol as a solvent, to dissolve fatty acids and oils. Alcohol, in some cultures has become a societal norm, yet in some cultures remains a blasphemous taboo. Yet, there isn’t a corner of this world, where alcohol is not consumed in one measure or another. However, we fail to realise that, amidst all the social scuffles and party nights throughout our lives, there is something that is amiss.

Momordica charantia, a vegetable, bitter in taste which rivals that of any alcoholic beverage, minus the harmful addiction issue, which should by all means make it the king of the vegetables in this era is sadly, probably the most repulsive vegetable for people on the planet. We all know this little ditty as Karela. Although containing the same scientific ‘taste’ as alcohol and far more medicinal advantages, people seldom gravitate towards this extremely similar tasting vegetable, compared to alcohol.

The mere mention of this vegetable being on the mess menu gives off a feeling as if everyone suddenly stepped into their worst nightmare. But, if the bitter taste of alcohol, which by local Indian societal standards, is considered as a “don’t tell my parents I had it” status, can be turned into something that people actually refer to as ‘tasty,’ Why is the same benefit not afforded to the Bitter Gourd? Given the time, and perseverance, one might find it quite tasty, and include them in most dishes. As we all know, in some parts of the country, Karela-bhaajji is a daily dish. This is not just a coincidence. People have realised the nutritious value of the Bitter Melon, and are actively introducing it into their daily diet.

Just like the cough syrup, which you came to like just because you gave it a chance and believed in it that, it would help your health and just like the friends who asked you to ‘give it a shot,’ give Momordica Charantia aka. Karela aka. Bitter Gourd/Melon, a shot at improving your health and life through organic consumption. If you really want to acquire a taste, acquire the taste of the smarter of the two choices.

Soumya Mahapatra

The writer is a student at Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland. 

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Awakening Indians: An initiative by Organic Wellness

“Awakening Indians” started as an internship project, but today it is one of the main projects for Organic Wellness.

As we are associated with the farmers, the idea behind Awakening Indians is to educate their children, as their family means our family. A typical day here does not mean rigorous lessons in the classroom. Our day consists of drawing, reading, writing, watching cartoons and playing sports. These activities develop creativity, focus and thinking ability. They are also fun ways of learning. These kids are extremely enthusiastic, punctual and avid learners. You will not believe how many things you can end up learning by spending time with them!

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Which energy are you? Wind, fire or water?

Most of us prefer taking medicines, which provide instant relief. But some of those medicines have side effects in the long term. But we usually deal with it by “yeah we’ll see” or “haan yaar dekha jayega“. Similarly Ayurveda has pros and cons as well. It works slowly. But it makes the immune system very strong. The first image that comes to our minds when we speak of Ayurveda is different kinds of herbs. It is important to understand that an Ayurvedic lifestyle includes exercising and a healthy diet, not just taking herbal supplements. Don’t expect Tulsi to work if you eat pizza almost every other day in front of the television. Things don’t come that easy after all. It’s a balance of all the body energies. According to Ayurveda, every person has a different energy or dosha. It has a physical and an emotional aspect.

First, Vata, which is Sanskrit for wind, takes care of breathing and circulation. It enhances creativity and keeps the body active. This person is often stressed and fears to take a different path.

Second, Pitta, which is Sanskrit for fire, takes care of digestion and maintains the body temperature. This kind tends to be hard working and driven but can lose their temper easily.

Third, Kapha, which is Sanskrit for water, boosts the immune system and nourishes the organs. People dominant with this energy are supportive and loving but often insecure and lazy.

Have you found your dosha yet?

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Traditional home remedies can do wonders!

We all remember our grandparents or parents reminiscing, “when we were young, we spent most of our time outside playing. There were no computers or video games” or “we were much more active and healthier”. Well, they are not wrong. With the advancement in health and medical facilities, new diseases have started spreading. Certain traditional remedies can never be replaced. People in India always had a habit of waking up with the sunrise, exercising in the morning, drinking 3-4 glasses of water, et cetera. There was some or the other logic behind it. Before, if somebody caught a cold, there were simple home remedies which helped to feel better. For example having a spoon of honey and ginger, drinking herbal tea or kada (which is mixture of different herbs or decoction). Before sleeping, people drank a glass of hot milk mixed with turmeric powder instead of cocoa to boost immunity. Turmeric has many benefits. It can be applied on the wounds, and it helps in reducing inflammation and pain. It also tackles diabetes and arthritis. It’s good for the skin a well. Sounds like a magical all-rounder spice to me.  

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