India is a land of aromatic spices which makes it a paradise for food lovers. Indian cuisine is famous for its rich creamy curries and aromatic rice recipes. The country has a diverse culture and every state has its own variety of dishes. From Punjab to Kerala and Gujarat to Kashmir, every state has its own bundle of ingredients and authentic flavor.
Indian food is not only scrumptious and flavorful; the use of spices also adds a lot of benefits to our health. Spices are one of the best ways to add flavor to a dish without piling on the calories. But if you’re keeping a watch on your weight, there are some Indian dishes you need to avoid. Like other ethnic cuisines, Indian food can also be heavy on the calories if you don’t order wisely. India has undoubtedly given the world numerous wonderful flavors, however, many recipes make use of ingredients like clarified butter, cream, milk, and coconut oil which are high in saturated fat.
So, next time you plan to dine at an Indian restaurant, you need to watch for the cooking methods like deep-fried dishes and check for the ingredients like cream, butter, and carbs. In this article, we have listed some dishes to help you eat healthy while enjoying all of the tastes that Indian restaurants have to offer. Read further to know “what to eat” and “what not to eat” to keep your waistline trim and slim.
Choose Appetizer wisely
Though samosa and kachori (deep-fried pockets of dough filled with spiced potatoes or meat) seem tempting, you need to stay away from such temptations. For starters, go for a green salad without high-calorie dressing. It is best to start with the dal, a lentil stew or curry which is delicious as well as filling. Dal is an excellent vegetarian protein source which is high in fiber.
Order Tandoori Dishes
For a healthy night out, opt for chicken or seafood dishes over ones with beef and lamb, which are higher in fat. Indian restaurants offer a great variety of chicken or shrimp dishes but you need to be cautious of the ingredients used and its preparation method.
The curries use a lot of spices such as turmeric, cumin, and coriander that are rich in antioxidants with anti-inflammatory properties. However, these curries are also loaded with butter, cream, and milk. So, if you want something low in calories with excellent taste, order tandoori dishes. In the tandoori method of cooking, the chicken or fish is marinated in yogurt and spices and then oven-grilled instead of fried. So, on your next dinner date, order a tikka dish if you are looking for extra flavor.
Eat Roti bread, not Naan
At authentic Indian restaurants, you’ll find multiple bread options. You need to order roti from the menu which is typically made with whole-wheat flour. It can be made from a variety of unrefined grains including millet, jowar, bajra, and whole wheat. Since you’re looking for healthier options, naan is not for you. Naan is white-flour bread brushed with clarified butter.
The use of spices such as turmeric, coriander, and ginger makes Indian cuisine spicy and rich. If you want to cool down your mouth, raita is for you. Raita, a traditional yogurt-based Indian condiment adds a refreshing flavor in the meal without adding on calories.