As a busy mom, I am always looking for the best foods that will help keep me and my family energetic all day long. Of course, including fruits, vegetables, oils and dairy is important but since we are vegetarians, we rely on superfoods to help us meet our protein needs. This is why we include a variety of grains and pulses in our diet.
Here, I have shared some of the superfoods I include in my meals along with the nutritional benefits that they have:
I absolutely love using soya while preparing my meals. It is so much fun experimenting with it since there are so many ways to cook it (boil, roast) and it absorbs the flavours so easily. It is a great protein supplement especially for vegetarians.
It is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids which helps protect the body from cardiovascular diseases. It also protects us women from osteoporosis since it helps absorb Vitamin D and Calcium.
A staple in every home, wheat is a great source of energy and helps provide balanced nutrition. If there is no time to prepare a big meal, I just prepare rotis and dal. I include it in most of our meals as it has so many health benefits.
It helps improve the body metabolism and prevents type-2 diabetes, gallstones, breast cancer, heart attacks. It also helps improve gut health.
An underrated grain, maize happens to be super tasty and nutritious. Rather than using corn flour, I prefer using cornmeal or maize flour which is less refined and more tasty and healthy.
It is good for the eyes, prevents anaemia, acts as a good source of energy and fibre, helps in diabetes management and can help prevent cancer. It also prevents hypertension and aids in weight loss. Maize is rich in manganese - an important mineral that maintains your blood sugar levels and helps break down complex carbohydrates.
4. Chickpea (Channa)
A favourite amongst the kids, I try to include channa in all the meals I prepare for my kids. It can be eaten as breakfast with puri or with rice for lunch. It can even be added to mixed dal to get that extra nutritional kick.
Apart from being a good source of protein, it is also known to improve bone health, lower BP, prevent diabetes and cancer, and lower the LDL (bad cholesterol - low-density lipoprotein) levels. It can also aid weight management, curing irritable bowel syndrome and improve digestion.
This is a favourite of mine. There is never a time when there are no oats in my house. It can be eaten as a quick and healthy breakfast especially for busy moms.
It helps regulate the cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels. It is rich in antioxidants and powerful soluble fibres like Beta Glucan. It can improve bone health, prevent cancer, prevent hypertension and asthma. It also helps aid weight loss, acts as a cure for constipation and can cure constipation.
Now, it is definitely not easy to include ALL of these foods in our family meals. Getting my kids to agree to eat soya and oats was another impossible feat. I did find a solution for this - Aashirvaad Atta with Multigrains.
It contains the goodness of all five of these grains - wheat, soya, chana, oats, and maize - along with psyllium husk. Psyllium husk is great for improving heart health and lowering blood pressure. If you would like to buy Aashirvaad Atta with Multigrains, click here.