May 15, 2020

Book Review: Ultimate Grandmother Hacks by Kavita Devgan



I stumbled upon this book in the "Read for free" collection on Kindle store. Kavita Devgan's Ultimate Grandmother Hacks was such an engaging and interesting read! The author has compiled a list of 50 lifestyle habits that our ancestors used to practice diligently which we have long forgotten. The content is similar to that of Rujuta Diwekar's but the writing style is slightly different. 

Kavita sets the context beautifully by narrating snippets from her childhood, her interactions with her mom and her food memories.

The first habit she emphasizes on is to understand the pH of our food. She elaborates on the acidic vs alkaline foods. One of the key take-aways for me is 
"When you exercise, the body takes in more oxygen, which helps to expel the acids from the body"
Next, she focuses on the importance of eating a balanced meal with all tastes including bitter tasting foods. A couple of points I learned from this chapter are
"The amount of nutrients you can squeeze out of what you are eating might just depend on whether your meal has a bitter component or not"

"Bitter foods help cut food cravings"
In the subsequent chapters, she highlights the importance of eating whole foods, nutrients present in the peels of most veggies and fruits, spices and herbs that are "adaptogens" helping us combat stress and fatigue. On explaining the importance of fats, she highlights the ratio of fats to be included - 1:1.5:1 (PUFA:MUFA:Saturated Fats). Using oils by rotation and ensuring our Omega 3 intake is good enough are some of the recommendations worth noting.

I liked the way she differentiates between comfort foods (foods that we have eaten as kids) and junk foods being used for comfort. 

Apart from foods and their nutrients, she also talks about our lifestyle. This statement sums it up nicely
"If you really don't have time to cook or to even sit down to have a meal, perhaps it is time to start questioning your lifestyle"
Cooking in traditional vessels like earthen pots, placing the food on a banana leaf, sitting down on the floor while eating - every such practice has a science backing which she has explained in simple terms. 

My most favorite was the chapter on how food impacts our mind and emotions. 

Totally loved reading this book. Lots of interesting tidbits and useful takeaways. Do check it out if you love to read books on food, nutrition and lifestyle.

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