While we recommend vegetables in every shape, colour and form, not all vegetables are healthy when consumed in certain unhealthy ways.
Most vegetables when eaten in their natural form, cooked at home, are great, but we don’t always eat vegetables like that, do we? And what about the other stuff that we put in our gravies calling them vegetables just for namesake? Here are some of those so-called vegetables that you should stay away from…
1. Veggie chips: You skip potato chips because of the starch and the lack of nutrition. But are veggie chips any better? Not really, especially if they are store bought. If you read the label at the back of the packet of veggies chips, the first ingredient is potatoes and corn, which to be honest isn’t any better than regular chips. You would be better off making your own veggie chips rather than buying veggie chips from the store.
2. Vegetable dips: When you go shopping for healthy dips, imagine your excitement when you see spinach dip or sundried tomato dip. But if you think that spinach is the main ingredient in spinach dip think again. Yes, it does contain healthy spinach, but it’s also chock-full of heavy cream, mayo and cream cheese, and quite often topped with breadcrumbs or croutons.
3. Corn: Corn is not a vegetable, it’s a grain. So while it is delicious and you love it, enjoy it by all means. Just don’t count it in your veggie quota. If you are eating a corn ‘vegetable’ with your chapatti, then you are indeed just eating grains for your lunch and there’s really no veggie in that lunch box. So corn is better avoided as a vegetable.
4. ‘Gatta nu shaak’ or gram flour dumplings: If this or any other so called ‘vegetable’ like this is part of your daily vegetable allowance, then it’s time to change that. Though you know it’s not really a vegetable, you should not even be associating it with the word – veggie. You would rather eat your rice with just daal if you don’t have proper veggies to eat it with. But get out of the habit of calling dishes like this one a vegetable.
5. Canned vegetable soup: It’s easy to think that the food manufacturers are doing you a favor by preparing a delicious, hearty – and frequently low-calorie – vegetable soup, but the reality is there are a multitude of evils hidden in that can. High sodium content aside, many of these soups also contain honey, sugar and other sweeteners – whether real or artificial – that can amount to as much as 15g of sugar per half-cup serving!
Eat your vegetables as they are, by trying to retain as much of their original colour and nutrition as possible. Cook them lightly, stir-fry, pan cook, flavour with as little masala that is palatable and learn to love the natural taste of healthy vegetables. Once you love these subtle flavours, you can enjoy then without trying to mask their taste in anyway.