Its not just about Maggi – Its about Real and Unreal Food!!!

The ‘Maggi‘ Controversy – Already being talked about a lot!!! I have been seeing lot of updates on Maggi ban. Guys its just a temporary ban of 15 days. After 15 days Nestle will be back in the market with its India famous Maggi. Then? Will you still enjoy Maggi after knowing the secret chemical ingredients?

Most of us have loved Maggi for its taste and have been dependent on it during our college days and bachelorhood. I being one of them. I don’t deny the fact that once upon a time I loved Maggi. But its been 8 years now and I have not had Maggi and I don’t miss it either. First 6 years of giving up Maggi, Coke, Pepsi and other processed food was not a conscious decision. It was not a conscious decision to have all these food items. I guess it just got into my subconscious mind that these are not good. But from last 2 years it has been a conscious decision to not have Maggi or any of those packaged or ready to eat food. They are actually foodless food.

Its not just about Maggi!!! We have become so much dependent on the processed and easy to cook food that we do not realize these are not food. Food can’t be stored in shelves for long without chemicals and preservatives. One of the tests done on Maggi had ‘permissible levels of lead’. What do you mean by that? So lead can be eaten in limited quantity? A question to be pondered upon !!!

Do you think ‘Maggi Healthy Oat Noodles’ is healthy? It would also contain permissible levels of lead and other chemicals in permissible levels. Who has decided these permissible levels of inedible stuffs in food? Lot of us drink ‘Real Juices’ and ‘Tropicana Juices’ in the name of fruit juices. Have you ever bought an orange and just left it for few days. Doesn’t it rot? And does all the oranges have same taste and flavour. Then how come Tropicana and other companies are selling ‘Real Fruit Juices’ with a uniform taste? Another question to be pondered upon!!!

First the fruits are taken through a process which takes the taste out. Then these flavoring companies are hired to develop their *unique* taste and add loads of sugar to make up for the lost taste.  And young mothers are giving this sugar laden syrup to their kids thinking its health. Is it so difficult to buy an orange and eat it or make a juice out of it and compromise with our family’s health?

We are losing our taste for the ‘real‘ food – Fruits and Vegetables. Fruits – You do not event have to prepare it. Just pick and eat. Or just pick, peel and eat. What can be easier, tastier and effortless than this. I know all those ‘foodies‘ out there would be cursing me but believe me I was one of you – My taste buds were always attracted towards the yummy food which now looks ‘artificial food’ to me.

I would not go into extremities and tell you to just have fruits and vegetables. But atleast take the first step towards health and try to stop consuming the processed and packaged foods. Just try to have simple home made meals with no artificial additives or preservatives.

Why do we need tomato ketchup from market with lots of additives and chemicals when we have abundance of tomatoes and lots of traditional recipes? Why do we need Coke and Pepsi when we have our tasty Aam Panna, Jaljeera, Shikanji? I know lot of us would say who has that much time. But is your health and your families health not important to you? Do you want your kids to be always sick and unhealthy? Why do we need to have a health breakdown to make us understand the simple rules of being healthy?

Yes I had a health breakdown and it made me realize how unhealthy we have become, how we ourselves have been destroying our health on a daily basis – Food being one of the important factor with other factors too.

Maggi ban is a start and if we all understand and stop consuming similar packaged and processed foods, there wouldn’t be a market for these products. We have stopped going to the super markets and buying those packaged foods. We have stopped having food from McDonalds, KFC etc who are selling highly processed and chemical laden food. But just few of us stopping doesn’t help much. If we all realize the adverse effects these are having on our health and nature and take a step towards it we would not only contribute to our health but also in turn contribute towards nation’s health. In fact we do not have any more packaging waste coming and going out of our house.

Lot of children have not tasted fruits. Are we not stopping them from having the real pleasures of nature? Are we not disconnecting them from nature? This is a serious issue. Do we need scientific facts and rationalization for proving this? Lets not get obsessed with science rather start taking decision based on ‘how nature works’!!! Lets start teaching ourselves and younger generations to think with their heart and not with mind. Its not easy with the conditioning that we have gone through but lets start making an effort towards this.

A lot of people are worried about the government making a hungama over Maggi noodles rather than taking care of the sanitation and water. Processed and Packaged foods are also a major factor of unhygienic health conditions along with sanitation and water. I do not deny that we need good sanitation and water but lets also support in throwing away these processed and packaged food from our life which is a major issue of health globally. Let this be a symbolic ban to ban unsafe food products along with good access to sanitation and water. Let’s not stop here and let it be the stepping stone towards greater good. People who can afford Maggi for 5 Rs can also afford 1 big banana for 5 Rs, but they prefer to have Maggi and in no way a 5 Rs Maggi fills the stomach better than a banana.

I have enjoyed the taste of few if not all the processed and packaged foods but believe me once you hang on to the natural, wholesome and real food you would not like the taste of the unreal food. And then it would enter neither your mouth nor your kitchen. You might get tempted sometimes but as soon as they touch your taste buds you would regret having them.

This is an appeal to everyone to stop consuming processed and packaged food. Even those which come labelled as healthy are not healthy or real food. Lets not progress so fast towards an unhealthy and obese nation and follow in the path of so called developed nations. We all know the health condition of the people of such countries and how fast food and packaged food has become an integral part of their life. Lets get together and save ourselves, our kids, our health and Mother Earth as Self Care is Health Care is Earth Care (Source: The Health Awareness Center). So lets start with Self Care. And lets start Self Care with banning all the processed and packaged foods from our life, from our kitchen and from the market.

Lets take this first baby step towards Self Care and let us take this Maggie ban as an opportunity to ponder and think upon what are we putting in our mouth and stomach. I know even if Nestle recalls Maggi from market, they will be back with a similar product with a new package and a new name. If not Maggi, there are so many other brands. But do we want to make our body slaves of these unreal food???

Disclaimer: Its not just about Maggi. The word Maggi used in the article denotes all the processed and packaged foods of all brands.

Appeal to the Delhi Government: As you have started looking into Maggi packets, please also check other packaged and processed foods entering into the market. I don’t think there is a need for tests of MSG or lead in all these packed foods. Any food which is out as product is not food and its for the market. Lets try to promote real food which are being grown by our farmers and also help save Mother Earth. I dream of the day when the processed and packaged food gets out of the market. This would lead to more consumption of natural food – fruits, vegetables, grains, pulses leading to a healthier nation and generation of less dry waste too

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