Delhi Secret Supper Club (DSSC) does some superb work when it comes to super suppers and we absolutely love that they’ve joined hands with us to combat the air pollution and smog through things that we eat. Trying to create the #EatEffect, they’re here to tell you why #GreenIsTheBlack.
First Things First
While we figure out how to appease the rain gods to wash away Delhi’s airy woes, here’s what you can do to combat the city’s pollutant air and smog, starting at home. We know there ain’t gonna be no overnight changes in Delhi’s air, so let’s control what we can and pay extra attention to the other important thing we put in our bodies – food.
When we breathe in, our lungs inhale air: Pollutants, smog & all. The lining of the lungs has antioxidants which acts like a sieve preventing the harmful substances access to our body. But the lungs can only do so much. After a point, the pollutants get through in the form of free radicals and begin wreaking havoc on our immune system. A normal amount of free radicals is important for the body to function well, but an overload leads to cell damage, which is why loading up on antioxidants helps build immunity and prevents excessive oxidation or the creation of free radicals within the body.
The three biggest sources of antioxidants are: Vitamin C, Vitamin E & Beta-Carotene
- Vitamin C fights free radicals & is abundantly found in lemons, guavas, oranges, kiwis and papayas. Bell peppers and green vegetables like kale, spinach and broccoli have a high Vitamin C content too.
- Almonds & avocados are high in Vitamin E along with sunflower seeds and plant oils like sunflower oil and olive oil. Kiwis have Vitamins C & E, so make sure you stock up on these.
- Our body converts beta-carotene into the cancer-fighting Vitamin A. Beta-carotene gives some food its orange colour. Take a leaf from Bugs’s book and grab a load of carrots. Pumpkin, sweet potatoes (with skin), apricots, spinach, kale, cabbage & broccoli are beta-carotene rich foods.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Back to the mini-bio lesson for a second. Remember the particulate matter you inhaled which entered your lungs? Your heart comes in contact with it through the blood it pumps, which absorbs the air you took in along with the particulate matter. Everything is connected. So here’s how you can take care of your heart in the coming weeks:
Make sure you include flaxseeds, chia seeds and walnuts in your diet along with black chickpeas, kidney beans, soybean and spinach. For all the seafood enthuses out there, we give you a reason to get your hands on good quality fish, oysters & caviar as omega 3 occurs naturally in these underwater inhabitants.
The flavonoids group of nutrients is known for its antioxidant & anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation within the body is what leads to chronic diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and cancer as it is the body’s response to stress wherein it floods it with hormones. In other words, our immune system goes on overdrive which is not healthy in the long-run. Here are some everyday flavonoids to counteract & calm our body as well as support the nervous system and the heart:
Red wine & white wine (hurrah!) are full of antioxidants as is dark chocolate. Green tea, broccoli and leafy vegetables yet again find their way on this list. Berries, nuts, beans and herbs like parsley and thyme are full of this important nutrient.
Happy Home Remedies To Tide You Over
Quick kitchen fixes and grandma’s recipes come to the fore with these simple tricks you can conjure up in your kitchen with minimal fuss and beat the smog that you’ve already inhaled. Also, improve your indoor PM content with these nifty tips:
- Haldi doodh or turmeric latte is indeed the way to go as turmeric has curcumin which battles free radicals.
- Jaggery is a natural cleanser & flushes out toxins from the stomach, lungs, respiratory tracts & is loaded with our best friend – antioxidants.
- Include ginger and tulsi in your tea and chew on raw garlic or neem in the mornings for a simple everyday detox.
- Pranayam, kapalbhati and jal neti will help cleanse your system of the adverse effects of smog.
- Invest in an air purifier and keep it on when you’re indoors, especially when you’re asleep.
- Indoor plants are are natural ways to purify air in the room. Our fave is the aloe vera plant which gives out oxygen at night and we love the fresh gel it produces too. The bamboo palm or the spider plant are naturally air-cleaners as well and can give a quick burst of colour to a room while removing carbon monoxide & other harmful matter from the air. Remember to dust off your new green friend regularly when you buy one!
- Download a PM (Particulate Matter) app & keep tabs on the areas where you spend the most time.
We hope this comprehensive list helps you take matters into your own hands and gives you back some power from the smog. We can’t do much about the air outside but we sure can be more responsible about our bodies and air quality in our homes at this time.
This post first appeared on Delhi Secret Supper Club.
Photos Courtesy Of: Pixabay
This article is part of the EatTreat campaign to eat better and live more consciously. We are creating the #EatEffect. Are you with us? #GreenIsTheNewBlack. Come see us at our event – The Great Winter Picnic.