by Wajid Aslam Khan
Since the Noon Chai is high in salt and contains baking soda, when taken in mornings in an empty stomach, it is reported that it increases the risk of gastric cancer. Kashmir is high prevalence zone for gastric cancer.
The human body is a complex creation of God and capable of doing so many things. It needs proper nutrition to carry out proper functions. To stay in health, our body needs proper food. The breakfast is the important meal of our day. It is important to have every basic nutrient in it.
Kashmiri breakfast is famous because of the popular pink salt and soda based tea, the Noon Chai. Usually, Kashmiri families have this tea at breakfast and in the afternoon as well.
Traditionally, people prefer to have tea instead of taking any fruits, vegetables, or eggs in the breakfast. Normally along with Noun Chai, people take Kashmiri bread with butter also.
Although Noon Chai is tasty and every Kashmiri loves to have it in a day, but it’s very unfortunate that it impacts our health adversely. Since the Noon Chai is high in salt and contains baking soda, when taken in mornings in an empty stomach, it is reported that it increases the risk of gastric cancer. Kashmir is high prevalence zone for gastric cancer. The consumption of Noon Chai is considering one of the factors contributing to it. The peculiar geography, genetics and some special dietary habits with possible familial predisposition may have a bearing on the high risk of gastric cancer in the Kashmir. The excessive intake of this hot salted alkaline tea in breakfast is the main factor of causing gastric disturbances slowly, and later on many persons slowly losses appetite, slight stomach pains etc.
As a fitness enthusiast I must say that, whenever I suggested people replace Noon Chai with eggs or boil veggies in the morning, most of the clients failed to adopt the alternative. This is because they have grown up having Noon Chai on daily basis.
Although Noon Chai is a low nutrient diet it has a great habitual effect on people. If we try to change the breakfast pattern, most people may not be able to take good nutritive diet because the stomach is not able to accept and we may feel full in two bites. We need to change our routine before it’s too late for our health or stomach.
People who are willing to change this habit should have alternatives. So what are the options:
Poached egg and boil potato egg toast: Take two pieces of brown bread or simple Kashmiri chapatti (without oil or ghee), put one whole half boil egg and one small boiled potato. You can add some salt, red chilly powder over it and put it in-between the two bread pieces and take it.
Honey banana toast: You’ll love this super quick and simple healthy breakfast with the flavour of banana. All you need two pieces of grain bread or simple Kashmiri chapatti, one banana and one teaspoon, pure honey. You cut a banana into small pieces spread honey over it mix and then put this mixture in between the bread and you are done.
Oats banana shake: This is a very quick way to have your breakfast, all you need to have one or two banana and 40gms of simple white oats and 250ml of warm low-fat milk (you can add some almonds or honey if available). Put this all in a blender or mixer and make a shake and drink it.
Egg and veggies protein bowl: This is very healthy and all you need is three egg whites, one apple, 1/3 of pieced cabbage and 1/3 of pieced cauliflower. Put these veggies in a bowl along with three egg whites. Smash the egg whites in a bowl and mix them with veggies. You can add tomato ketchup for flavour and your healthy bowl is ready.
Olive oil and egg omelette: This is healthier and especially for the old aged people. All you need to have olive oil two teaspoons, 2/3 whole eggs, little green chilli and half of the small onion. Put olive oil on pan heat it well and ready egg, green chilli and onion mixture and make is semi-liquid and then put on pan and cook it for 5 minutes on both sides and your omelette is ready. You can have it with chapatti.
Above mentioned meals are good to start and would kick start your metabolism for the day, boost your energy levels and prepare your body and mind for the events.
It is good to say goodbye to Noon Chai. Why cannot it be from this breakfast?
(A fitness enthusiast, the author is a student currently enrolled at Department of Bioscience and Bioengineering at the Lovely Professional University Punjab.)