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Indian Food Can Never Stand Parallel To Italian Cuisine: Chef Ritu Dalmia

Indian food may finally be getting its due global recognition, but it will never be able to stand parallel to Italian cuisine

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Italian, Indian, Cuisine, Food, Chef
Fileja and Nduja : italian pasta dish. Wikimedia Commons

Indian food may finally be getting its due global recognition, but it will never be able to stand parallel to Italian cuisine on international stage owing to its complexity, says celebrity chef Ritu Dalmia.

“The popular of Indian food is on the rise, but I do not think it will ever attain the position that Italian food holds, as Indian cuisine is very complex and has particular flavours, which does not appeal to everyone,” Dalmia, co-founder of Italian restaurant chain Diva, told IANS Life.

Dalmia, who has re-launched Diva Spiced, a blend of modern Asian dishes along with some regional Indian flavours, said her journey in the food industry was something she never thought of.

“I always loved cooking for pleasure, and after having a series of very bad meals I commented about it to some friends, who turned around and said if you think you can do better then why don’t you start a restaurant. Passionate and enterprising that I was, I took their words to heart and within three months opened my first restaurant.

Italian, Indian, Cuisine, Food, Chef
Indian food can’t be at par with Italian fare. Wikimedia Commons

“I was forced to do my first catering by a client, who insisted that he wanted Diva food for his 40th birthday. That was the day I just said to myself, ‘hey this was fun, and I think I could do this’,” she told IANS.

The chef says though her brand does many events, it is very “thoughtful and selective about the kind of events it wants to do”.

“Italy and I, have a connection from my past life. I had to do something to challenge myself. And next thing I knew was that Cittamani was in the pipeline. And here we are today, without my having the slightest idea how we got here,” she said.

But in the meanwhile, work by Dalmia and her ilk has helped change traditional perceptions about food and the people who prepare it. She recalled how she was offered the job of a “domestic cook” when she opened her first restaurant. “Back then, a chef, in people’s mind, was equal to a domestic help. But today they are treated like celebrities, respected and admired. So I guess we have come a long way.”

She said her Diva catering has always been very conscious about not wasting food, long before the Delhi government decided to draft a law to keep a check on food wastage at social functions in the national capital.

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“We work with NGOs like Feeding India, volunteers of which come at the end of every event to pick up all the leftovers. Then again we are not a regular catering company with hundreds dishes on our menu. Our motto has always been, “less is more,” she said.

Dalmia said cooking calms her down. “It is the only thing that soothes and relaxes me,” she said. The chef is now getting ready to launch her next venture in Noida. She also has plans to majorly expand in Italy. (IANS)

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Women Who Consume Food Late in The Evening Likely to Suffer Heart Disease: Study

Data from the food diary completed by each woman was used to determine the relationship between heart health and the timing of when they ate

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Heart Health
Researchers found that, after 6 p.m. with every one per cent calories consumed Heart Health declines, especially for women. Pixabay

Women who consume a higher proportion of their daily calories late in the evening are more likely to be at risk of Heart Disease than women who do not, researchers have warned.

For the study, the research team assessed the cardiovascular health of 112 women using the American Heart Association’s Life’s Simple 7 measures at the beginning of the study and one year later.

Life’s Simple 7 represents the risk factors that people can improve through lifestyle changes to help achieve ideal cardiovascular health and include not smoking, being physically active, eating healthy foods and controlling body weight, along with measuring cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels.

A heart health score based on meeting the Life’s Simple 7 was computed.

“The preliminary results indicate that intentional eating that is mindful of the timing and proportion of calories in evening meals may represent a simple, modifiable behaviour that can help lower heart disease risk,” said study lead author Nour Makarem from Columbia University in the US.

During the study, participants of the study kept electronic food diaries by computer or cell phone to report what, how much and when they ate for one week at the beginning of the study and for one week 12 months later.

Data from the food diary completed by each woman was used to determine the relationship between heart health and the timing of when they ate.

Heart Disease
Women who consume a higher proportion of their daily calories late in the evening are more likely to be at risk of Heart Disease than women who do not, researchers have warned. Pixabay

Researchers found that, after 6 p.m. with every one per cent calories consumed heart health declined, especially for women.

These women were found more likely to have higher blood pressure, higher body mass index and poorer long-term control of blood sugar.

ALSO READ: Women Who Consume Food Late in The Evening Likely to Suffer Heart Disease: Study

Similar findings occurred with every one per cent increase in calories consumed after 8 p.m.

“It is never too early to start thinking about your heart health whether you’re 20 or 30 or 40 or moving into the 60s and 70s. If you’re healthy now or if you have heart disease, you can always do more. That goes along with being heart smart and heart healthy,” said study researcher Kristin Newby, Professor at Duke University. (IANS)