Sharing My Experiments with Weightloss and Sambar

” I love sambar!” says my north Indian friends.Actually so do I.Did a little digging to find out the secrets of taste and health in the homely sambar. Sharing the same with you.Sambar contains cereals and pulses, veggies. The Carbs in the side dish of Idly or Dosa is balanced by the veggies and protein. The veggies also give fibre ,minerals and other essential nutrients. In short its a complete meal.

In my search for a weight loss program I could follow ,I had done a lot of research but some how I missed the part about Carbs being brain food (IMPORTANT) and I had banned it from my daily meals for the period. Sometimes I think that it may have impacted my memory.

When the food we eat is balanced, food has medicinal properties and nurtures us body and mind.Idli/Dosa  and Sambar is the balanced meal combo I love and recommend for dieters. Balancing the carbohydrates with the protein and a little fat will do a better job of staving off hunger until lunch than starving yourself of something and binging later.

Sambar beats Biriyani type casserole meals on health grounds and it is more satisfying than gruel , soup or protein shakes which dieters rely on to overcome hunger pangs. Not to forget that the curry style allows you to eat full stomach and load yourself with fewer calories. That is if you keep a check on the  number of idly  to 3 and Dosa to 2 for breakfast. Do not take it at night.

Nutritive value of sambar  (1 cup) for your reference 
Nutrient
Energy (kcal) 90
fat (g) 2.1
Carbohydrate(g) 12
Protein (g) 4
Dietary fiber(g) 3
Calcium(mg) 38

Oh, By The Way, Drumsticks add a special flavor to Sambar  . No,I don’t mean chicken drumsticks ! The medicinal properties of Moringa Oleifera or drumsticks are referred to in the ancient texts of Ayurveda . A look at its many synonyms point to its  various properties. It is known as “shobhanjana”  because it gives a good look to the surroundings. Due to its effect on potency it is also called “shigru”. “Theekshnagandha” is another synonym for its pungent smell. All its parts have medicinal use including its root,bark , leaves,seeds,sap et all. Hence the tree is aptly named “mochaka” as it gives relief (mochana) from many diseases.

According to Web Md website article ,Moringa  is considered an aphrodisiac but that’s not all there is to it. It is  also useful in cases of (anemia);  arthritis; rheumatism;  asthma; cancer and many other health problems. For details go to this link    http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-1242-DRUMSTICK%20TREE.aspx?activeIngredientId=1242&activeIngredientName=DRUMSTICK%20TREE

Dr Vanisha Nambiar from the Department of Foods and Nutrition at The Maharaja SayajiRao University of Baroda in Gujarat,India has waxed eloquent on the nutritional value of drumstick leaves in a presentation in 2006 . What caught my fancy in her presentation though was her take on the drumstick seeds.  She said that the dried and roasted drumstick seeds taste like Groundnuts.  I  tried it and loved it. WOW!

Apart from taste, I also love Sambar  because it gets better when it’s a day older. Good reason for recycling last night’s left over for breakfast! Needless to say a boon for working women like me. Keep it for Saturday night if you plan to sleep longer on Sunday morning or Sunday night to help you through the weary Monday mornings 🙂

In A Short Course in Culinary Experiments the variations to Sambar is given in U7.1 and U7.2. As a malayali I preferred U7.2. Here’s my variation on the malayali sambar. A dash of cumin powder, 1 teaspoon sugar and a handful of finely cut coriander leaves gives an unforgettable aroma and flavour to your regular Idly/ Dosa and Sambar Combo. Icing on the cake is that the cumin will enhance your metabolism and digest everything faster leaving less to be stored on your body. 🙂

Do share any variations or experiments you have done  right here.

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