Dr. Kanika Chauhan

Thali post

The Story of Indian Thali

Why our thali should have evolved with us!

I remember seeing my grandfather eating a fully packed pack thali during my visits to the village in my childhood days. This thali would include daal/lentils, seasonal vegetables, curd, salad, rice and chapati, jaggery, or a portion of sweets, not to forget the pickles and the chutney.

During her visits to our place, my grandmother would often complain to my parents that the children are not eating enough and need full, healthy thalis. And this was not just the story of our household, but most of the families have similar stories.

While we adopted the traditional thali, we forgot that our traditional families did a lot of manual work. First, they all lived in a joint family, while most of us today live in nuclear. They walked a lot, worked in the farms and fields, the water supply would be from handpumps or wells, somebody would pickles and papads at made at home only, and most of the spices were grounded at home. Our generation is not at par with them in terms of physical labor.

  • We don’t walk much as they did
  • We don’t endure physical labor as they did
  • Even when we work in the kitchen, our family size is much smaller than the joint families.

We have domestic help and washing machines, while they did not enjoy such privileges. I can go on and on because the list is endless, and there is no proper comparison. The right question to ask is, “If we are not doing as much physical labor, then why is our diet so similar to theirs?”

My mantra is simple “Eat healthy, but eat only as much as you can burn. Otherwise, you will end up storing the excess as body fat!”
Mind the plate portions