Think Indian food, and you are instantly reminded of greasy curries, buttery parathas or deep-fried pakodas. Such has been the perception of Indian food across the world, and it is not entirely wrong either. We do house some very decadent preparations, but to think that is all we have on board is a tad unfair. Indian food has a rich range of super healthy foods too. If you think quinoa, avocado and salmon are beyond your understanding, and a little out of budget too - it is okay. If you are on a weight loss diet, you would find enough help in your regular kitchen cabinet too. Pulses, nuts, seeds and dairy that you buy everyday are great source of protein. Protein helps keep you satiated. They also help regulate the hunger hormone ghrelin that checks cravings and facilitate weight loss.
Including proteins in diet is a good way to keep untimely hunger pangs at bay. Indian household kitchens are a treasure trove of desi protein-rich foods.
Here are 5 Desi High-Protein Foods You Can Add To Your Weight Loss Diet
1. Moong Dal
The versatile Indian lentil is an excellent source of fibre and protein that you must add to your diet, if you have been on a weight loss diet. It is, in fact, the best and easily available plant-based source of protein. Hundred grams of moong lentil contains has 24 grams of proteins. Make sure when you prepare a bowlful of it for yourself, you keep the tadka light. Moong dal can also be used to prepare other delicious dishes such as moong dal ka chila, moong dal khichdi or moong dal sprouts.
Chaas, or buttermilk, is an Indian summer staple we cannot do without. Made by churning yogurt, chaasis often teemed with a special spice-mix that is said to be good for digestion. Digestion is key to healthy weight loss. Yogurt and all dairy goods for that matter are excellent sources of protein. Yogurt is also a probiotic, which helps feed good bacteria in your gut. A healthy gut is also linked to healthy weight loss.
Raita is another cool desi summer side dish that we often have along with lunch or dinner. Besides, helping in digesting food, it can also help you burn some fat. Made with yogurt, raita makes for an excellent source of vegetarian protein. The best part about raita is the room it gives you to experiment, you can add fruits and veggies of your choice to it and have a sumptuous treat (Read: Pineapple raita, cucumber raita). Vegetable/fruit-based raita is always a better idea than boondi raita as boondi is deep fried.
4. Chicken Tikka
Surprised? Don't be. You are not the only one to associate diet food with all things bland and boring. But it is high time we bust some common myths. Chicken tikka, especially if it is made at home, is an incredible source of protein. Chicken is dubbed as one of the best sources of lean protein; meaning, it is rich in protein, but does not pack the same amount of fat as red meat. Now, coming to the preparation, since tikka is not fried, it is roasted, it saves you the excess calories you would find in a deep-fried item. But before you start jumping on your sofas, make sure you understand that you cannot eat chicken tikka all through the day. You have to balance it with veggies and healthy grains for wholesome nutrition. Remember, moderation is key to weight loss.
5. Palak Paneer
Paneer, being a dairy product, is also a great source of protein. When the high protein food is mixed with the fibre-rich goodness of spinach, it makes for a wholesome weight-loss-friendly food. However, make sure you are mindful with the greasy content here. A lot of us enjoy having a bowlful ofpalak paneer with a dollop of butter on top. Butter is packed with saturated fats; hence, it is a good idea to avoid the same.
(Also Read: 7 Best Healthy Dinner Recipes | Healthy Dinner Ideas)
So, what are you waiting for? Don you apron and get started.
About Sushmita SenguptaSharing a strong penchant for food, Sushmita loves all things good, cheesy and greasy. Her other favourite pastime activities other than discussing food includes, reading, watching movies and binge-watching TV shows.