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April 24, 2014

Who’s Cooking & Why Does It Matter? ~ Megha Mehta

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I have family in various parts of India and two of my nephews study in New Delhi.

New Delhi is the center of not only our country’s political scenario but is also a social and cultural focal point. In one of their school gatherings a few years ago, their principal spoke about the importance of eating what their mothers cooked. He encouraged them to bring only what their moms (or dads) cooked in their tiffin boxes and eat that for lunch every day.

The way my country works, the majority of women (and some men) are adept at preparing home-cooked meals from a very early age.

It dates back to centuries ago. Older family settings made it much easier for food to be cooked at home under the expert eyes of the woman/en of the house. Traditionally, in India home-cooked food has always taken precedence over food bought at a restaurant or elsewhere.

The reasons for that are many.

We know that every single thing around us is energy. Apart from the fact that you know exactly what goes into preparing your food, the emotional state and the intention mind of a person who cooks our food makes a difference to the kind of energy that your body derives from it, in the form of nutrition.

Someone once reminded me of this with an example. The person cooking at the restaurant cooks with a motive of earning money whereas a parent cooking for his/her children prepares with the nutrition and benefit of the food for the child in their mind.

Similarly, food that is cooked and packaged in a factory is devoid of loving human touch and vibrations and hence is nutritionally inferior.

Remember eating at a place which serves food with an attitude of service?

Every time I have eaten at a place of worship, there has been something about the food that makes it taste great and makes me feel good. I totally love how amazing food tastes and how great I feel after a meal at a temple or ashram.

This may sound really funny but the next time you face problems of indigestion, gastric troubles, stomach aches or other issues after your meal, in the list of suspects should be an angry or frustrated cook’s involvement in the preparation of the food. Of course we’re not going to discount the other reasons this could be, like stale ingredients, your own emotional state of mind, improper food combinations or over/under-eating.

I also suspect that’s why traditionally women in India didn’t enter their kitchens during their period. That time of the month is when a woman is getting rid of a lot of impurities and negativity both physically and on an energy level.

Perhaps, cooking food at the time would not make the food the most nutritious or energy-enhancing. Apart from this, Ayurveda prescribes a slow, restful time during those days every month.

So, today take a minute to consider whose hands are involved in the food that gets to your plate.

How is the environment of the place that you buy your food from? Do the chefs and waiters at your favorite restaurant look happy?

Maybe you’d like to consider treating yourself to food cooked at home with the highest hygiene and utmost love, as often as possible. The level at which the body will receive that energy is much higher.

This quote from Deepak Chopra’s book, Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga, sums up beautifully the importance of the small intricate factors that are responsible for our vibration, energy and ultimately the composition of our physical body:

“Our bodies ultimately are fields of information, intelligence and energy. The quality of the soil in which your food is raised is also directly connected to the health of your tissues and organs. And your environment is your extended body. You are inseparably interwoven with your ecosystem.”

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Apprentice Editor: Hannah Harris / Editor: Renée Picard

Photo: Pixoto

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Megha Mehta