The goodness of Beet root

Goodness of beet root
Does beetroot really help increase blood because it is red?


The common perception is that beetroot is rich in iron and hence increases hemoglobin especially in the iron deficient group. Some other profess that beets help to purify blood. What’s surprising is that, it actually does none of these. Yes, there is no concrete scientific evidence to show that the  deep red colour of beetroot has an impact on increasing iron content or blood volume. Iron content is only 1.1mg per 100gm. In fact, beets contain oxalates which can inhibit absorption of the non heme iron.Read More »

Desi Tadka with Olive Oil


Olive oil can be great for Indian cooking too
Olive oil for good health!

When we hear of olive oil, we imagine it as the oil used for Western cooking which involves low temperatures and shorter cooking time. So far the common understanding was that olive oil is best suited for pastas and salads. We cannot imagine an aloo gobi cooked in olive oil;forget frying samosas in it!

Contrary to this perception, turns out that olive oil seems to fare better than other conventional oils for deep frying. Read More »

How to overcome loss of taste?

How to overcome loss of taste

Imagine eating a golden ripe mango but not being able to experience its juicy sweet taste ! It can be quite disheartening to lose the perception of taste. In case of elderly who are already feeling low and weak due to the natural deterioration in functioning, a further loss in sense of taste can have disastrous effects on appetite as well as mood/ mental state.

In our previous blog, we have seen that there is a range of dis functioning starting from ageusia (complete loss of taste) , hypogeusia (blunting of taste perception), dysgeusia (abnormal taste perception) and the phantom taste (weird metallic taste even in the absence of food).  

Improving taste perception

Often, taste disturbances having no known cause or the disease related are difficult to treat. There are few studies showing some extent of relief from certain therapies-

Supplementation with zinc helps improve taste sensations although it does take several months before results are visible.  Zinc helps in increasing the number of taste buds. Although one may think that people who are zinc deficient may benefit more, but zinc supplementation even in those without deficiency has shown to have a beneficial impact on improving taste.


Certain receptors on the tongue are sensitive to temperature of the foods. Surprisingly a particular case study of an  80 year old woman showed that holding ice cube in her mouth  before meals lead to improvement in taste sensation. Even otherwise, intake of cooling foods before meals can help reduce the unpleasant sensations of taste and flavour.

In some cases of altered taste perceptions, improving oral hygiene can help. In elderly it is important to prevent tooth or gum problems in order to prevent loss of taste. Mouthwashes have antibacterial properties and also help improve oral health.

Also, as we saw in our earlier blog, sense of smell and taste go hand in hand so it is important to treat any underlying olfactory problems  in elderly. Often any blockages in the nasal passage due to cold or infections can lead to poor perception of smell and cause disinterest in eating.

Enhancing food flavors

  • Use of lemon juice or tamarind in foods can improve flavor of foods
  • Using a marinade for meats or certain vegetables before cooking can help flavors penetrate the food better thereby improving taste
  • Sweet taste can be enhanced by using jaggery or honey
  • Addition of cinnamon to soups or black salt to juices for elderly can further enhance taste

Old age is the most difficult phase in life cycle. Some individuals hate the dependence that comes with it and it further adds to their frustration. However, optimum nutrition is an important part of survival and good quality of life which should not be neglected or underestimated. When elderly complain of loss of taste or show disinterest in eating, one must make earnest efforts to resolve the problem in the best possible way.


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Looking at the current lifestyles which are more sedentary and driven by technology , cooking offers a great deal of variety and scope for innovation. Across households, there are some modifications to the recipes that may be required. The good news is that there are several options available to prepare the same foods in a more healthy manner by cutting down unnecessary calories.Read More »


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Yes, it is and is definitely a great way to maintain healthy stomach and bowel.

Eating fast and swallowing air while not chewing food well can also cause acid reflux along with gas, indigestion, IBS, heartburn, constipation, and bloating. With the advent of fast foods which can be literally consumed ‘fast’ requiring little effort in chewing, there are rising instances of digestive diseases and disorders.Read More »