Health is wealth
Yes, I certainly do agree ‘health is wealth ‘… that familiar saying one encounters in some way or the other. The life styles we lead, needs to be assessed concentrating on a healthier aspect in living a meaningful life. Today I will be touching upon the subject of healthy food, and spa food. It all adds up to good nutrition, organic foods, and exercise to fulfill the requirement of healthy living. Our body, if micro-viewed is made up of water, fat, protein carbohydrates, vitamins, etc.
Healthy living to most people is, that the physical health and mental well being, is in harmonious balance. These two are closely linked, and a change in either one of them, affects the other.
The natural elements in a spa cuisine assist the body in its functions, by focusing and in energizing the body, as well as stimulating the mind by distressing, detoxification and purifying the system. It is important to know that the human body needs constant nourishment, and the nutrient requirements change accordingly to the factors that lead to stress, lack of sleep, taking medication for sickness, and exercises. To ascertain one’s body nutrient requirements, is to understand and help in maintaining a well balanced diet that is essential for good health.
In spa cuisines, one must concentrate in selecting the fresh organic produce of fruits and vegetables. A special effort is made in the preparation of spa food to enhance the flavours of the ingredients of the meal, by choosing high concentrations of nutrients, such as appropriate protein, carbohydrates, fruits and vegetable fiber- vital to a healthy long life.
Everyone requires a customized diet. The offering of the light and healthy dishes in the menu, is prepared according to personal requirements which are recommended in a person’s diet, as different body types require varied foods. The objective of a spa cuisine is to relax and rejuvenate the guest’s desire in revitalizing their body and soul through a conducive-to-good health approach via diet and lifestyle.
Today, it is not about nibbling on raw sticks of carrot like a rabbit, but enjoying a splendid arrangement of vegetables in its natural form with accompaniments of dips, added with a mix of herbs to tantalize the taste buds. The wide-ranging menu in a spa cuisine is truly amazing, and I would like to refer to a few foods, colourfully displayed, and mouth watering menus of some spa dishes, that includes appetizers, main courses and desserts of course. The quick tip would be in choosing ‘healthy carbs’ – that include whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables. The healthy carbs are digested slowly, keeping blood sugar and insulin levels stable, and helping you feel full, over a longer period of time.
For healthy bones and teeth, we must not cut back on ‘calcium’ which is vital for our body. In order to do so, we must consume dairy products which are rich in calcium. Vegetables and greens too must be included.
One must also add ‘protein’ in the perspective. We need to get up and get going, and having protein in your diet gives us that energy to do things. And especially as we age, we need high quality protein in our system. In order to achieve this we must consume foods such as chicken, fish, dairy, plant based food – beans, nuts and soy. Vegetarian sources of seeds include walnuts and flaxseed.
Enjoying ‘ healthy fats ‘ are foods that are rich in omega 3 and is found in fatty fish like salmon, herring, sardine, which are termed as polyunsaturated fats. The source of nutrients that contain monounsaturated fats, are the avocado fruit which includes a lot of fiber, vitamins and minerals. Nuts like hazelnuts, almonds and pecans, and seed – pumpkin and sesame seeds are monounsaturated fats.
It would be ideal to avoid the ‘trans fats’ which are known as saturated fats, and, are not good for the body. These are found in processed foods, vegetable shortening, margarines, snack food etc.
Inclusion of pulses in our diet all over the world is considered important in maintaining a macrobiotic diet. As pulses are part of the legume family, the plant has its fruit enclosed in a pod, and the dried seed is referred to as a pulse. These contain protein, dietary fiber, and vitamins and minerals that are low in fat. Pulses contain plant fiber and help fight obesity. Examples of these pulses are edible beans, dried peas, lentils and chickpeas are the common varieties used in our diet. As a food source, the pulses are varied in colours with its nutrient value, when made into a lovely preparation, makes the dish appetizing.
Today spa menus have been re-vamped and have been taken to a whole new level, where the presentation of the dish looks good, tastes good and smells good.
The rich colour in the presentation of would be spa menus featured herein, makes my mouth water- when thinking of the goodness in consuming food with the correct nutrients crucial to healthy living. Health is wealth alright!
The writer is a former media representative for ‘Spa Asia’ and it was during her tenure that the Singapore based magazine published a feature on Sri Lankan Spas in 2005