2

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Im Going to Northern India for 3 Months - What am I Going to Eat?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 16, 2011 at 9:41 PM

I read Robb Wolfe's book earlier this year and made major changes in my diet, cutting out all grains & dairy for a period of time, then maintained 80/20 Paleo from then on. About a month ago I received a job offer that I couldn't refuse so I'll be living in India for 3 months working as a strength coach at a tennis academy.

From the Paleohacks community, I'd love: tips on foods to eat/avoid in Northern India and/or any helpful encouragement to get back on track. I did do a search for both the former and latter and came up with a few ideas, so that's great, but I guess I'm looking for a personal touch. In other news, I have no sensitivities to foods at all, except avocado. I just feel better off grains/dairy and I'm terrified I'm about to embark on a 3 month journey of rice, naan bread, lentils and I don't know what else. Help?

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 18, 2011
at 03:27 AM

I had lived/traveled around that area for several years

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 10:27 PM

Wow, you're very knowledgable of this specific region - lucky for me. Thanks a lot Resurgent!

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 17, 2011
at 08:26 AM

have local kitchen help. Vegetables are available fresh, prefer to eat those that are in season and that are harvested daily. Ludhiana town is surrounded by farms that grow a lot of stuff, so fresh produce is easily available. Someone in the thread mentioned pastured eggs. yes, you can get these but only in the winter months - lucky for you , that you are going there now. They are known as Desi eggs, they have distinct orange yolks. Enjoy your trip.

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 17, 2011
at 08:14 AM

Ludhiana is a big town and every thing is available. If you are going to cook yourself, for meat, I will recommend eating goat meat which is available at every butcher. It is grass fed as 95% goats in India are raised by grazing. In moderation you can try local chicken which is CAFO - Avoid local Pork completely. Beef will be hard to find. There is a new local diary that sells Milk from Grass fed cows. It is called 'TruMilk' - Insist for it and you will find it. Boil your own water, that is the best, short of getting bottled water. And make your own yogurt if you can, it is very easy, if you

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:35 AM

I appreciate the mini-lesson, Firestorm (and peter). I will definitely use all of this info while I am there. Muchas gracias!

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:33 AM

Thanks very much Lady_Arwen! I'm going to print off this page for reference. I appreciate your comments.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:32 AM

I used to eat them all the time, sans problem! I think I must have overdosed and now I get a very bad stomach every time. I did still continue to eat them for a few weeks, stomach be damned, then I got sick of that feeling. I hope to reintroduce them later.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:31 AM

Punjab region, near Ludhiana.

6b8d12fc3e43179f9ae1765a4d1a9dc2

(5914)

on November 17, 2011
at 01:53 AM

Couple of things to correct - tikka's are any small peices of meat, they can be chicken, fish, lamb, etc marinated and usually cooked on sticks. Gosht is a kind of curry from northern India and is usually lamb or goat. Sorry, I hate to be that guy.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on November 17, 2011
at 12:15 AM

If you want to stay completely away from dairy and grains, I'd recommend avoiding anything with "paneer" and anything 'lassi' -- which are yogurt-based drinks. A little vocubulary helps, too. Aloo is potato, ghobi is cauliflower, palak is spinach, tandoori is food that is marinated and cooked in special ceramic ovens. Mattar are peas, Ghosh is goat (can sometimes be lamb), Vindaloo is a very spicy/hot preparation, tikka is chicken, yakni is mutton (sheep)... all of them are awesome as curries and tandoories... yes, and vindaloo if your mouth can handle the fire. *grins*

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on November 17, 2011
at 12:00 AM

India has some excellent goat -- curried goat is the BOMB, and is really good in terms of paleo principles. I am one of the folk who don't eat grains, but I might break down for a once a week splurge of basmati rice with ghee. I don't know if you do dairy, but if you do, I also think you might enjoy some palak paneer or saag paneer (saag is a spicy/tart/bitter green -- sort of like broccoli rabe or endive), which is a spicy dish of curried greens with chunks of home-made mild cheese curds. If you like vegetables, getting tandoori ANYTHING with a dish called vegetable khorma is heaven on earth.

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7 Answers

best answer

2
64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on November 16, 2011
at 11:57 PM

Some grains are not as problematic as others. If you have a strong intolerance for gluten, I'd look for rice and vegetables of course. Also, there is a traditional dish called ragi which is like a porridge made with millet, which doesn't contain gluten. Other non-gluten containing grains are sorghum, amaranth, and buckwheat.

I'd also do a lot of eggs and potatoes and meats where you can find them. Unfortunately you won't be in Kerala (southwest) because that state consumes 95% of India's meat. North India should have more meat options than the rest of the country, so eat chicken, etc. when possible.

best answer

3
8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

on November 17, 2011
at 01:02 AM

I went to India with my husband in Feb 2010, and he has severe gluten issues (but not casein or dairy).

If you don't have dairy sensitivities then yogurt, lassi, paneer (often cooked in heavy cream) is fine.

Goat and lamb curries are delicious. Most chicken is now factory-farmed so do more goat, lamb, and fish.

They do have pastured brown eggs, when I was in Kolkata they called them Desi eggs and even the maid knew what they were!

You will get vegetable oils because they are cheap just about anywhere unless you have a cook at home and go to the grocery store yourself.

Stay away from all fried foods and naan, puris, breads, wheat of all sorts.

Bhajra roti is made from millet. Rice is fairly benign.

I would try to have animal protein and fat at each meal and have vegetables and potatoes too. Minimize beans/legumes/dals.

Eat ghee but stay away from dhaldha (fake hydrogenated ghee) - butter is more reliable. Most dairy has become factory-farmed unless you know the cow in the villages.

Don't overdo the carbs - Indian people are obsessed with sweets. If you can handle dairy then rosagolla, rasmlai, sandesh, kheer or payesh (rice pudding) are made from milk as a cheat. Better than the wheat sweets like gulup jamun.

Ask if any flour is used in foods you eat.

Hiring a cook is pretty inexpensive the US equivalent of maybe $5-15/day.

Don't eat raw things unless like a coconut, banana, that have a peel. Too many parasites.

Avoid street food which is mostly wheat deep fried in vegetable oil. Most illnesses come from this too.

Avoid ice, juices, and smoothies unless from a 5-star restaurant - my Mom got salmonella at an Indian wedding!

Sweet and Salty Lemonade with Mint is not bad - again from a high end place.

Good luck!

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:33 AM

Thanks very much Lady_Arwen! I'm going to print off this page for reference. I appreciate your comments.

3
A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

on November 17, 2011
at 04:19 AM

The comments above are all generally excellent, but where exactly are you going to be in North India? It is a very diverse region.

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 17, 2011
at 08:14 AM

Ludhiana is a big town and every thing is available. If you are going to cook yourself, for meat, I will recommend eating goat meat which is available at every butcher. It is grass fed as 95% goats in India are raised by grazing. In moderation you can try local chicken which is CAFO - Avoid local Pork completely. Beef will be hard to find. There is a new local diary that sells Milk from Grass fed cows. It is called 'TruMilk' - Insist for it and you will find it. Boil your own water, that is the best, short of getting bottled water. And make your own yogurt if you can, it is very easy, if you

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 17, 2011
at 08:26 AM

have local kitchen help. Vegetables are available fresh, prefer to eat those that are in season and that are harvested daily. Ludhiana town is surrounded by farms that grow a lot of stuff, so fresh produce is easily available. Someone in the thread mentioned pastured eggs. yes, you can get these but only in the winter months - lucky for you , that you are going there now. They are known as Desi eggs, they have distinct orange yolks. Enjoy your trip.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:31 AM

Punjab region, near Ludhiana.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 10:27 PM

Wow, you're very knowledgable of this specific region - lucky for me. Thanks a lot Resurgent!

A089b683ee0498f2b21b7edfa300e405

(3895)

on November 18, 2011
at 03:27 AM

I had lived/traveled around that area for several years

1
D117467bf8e8472464ece2b81509606c

(2873)

on November 17, 2011
at 05:12 AM

An avocado sensitivity? I ate one today for breakfast and dinner, something I rarely do, and my stomach is killing me. But they're so damn good...

I don't have much to say except good luck getting back on track. It is certainly a rough road.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on November 17, 2011
at 06:32 AM

I used to eat them all the time, sans problem! I think I must have overdosed and now I get a very bad stomach every time. I did still continue to eat them for a few weeks, stomach be damned, then I got sick of that feeling. I hope to reintroduce them later.

0
Medium avatar

on June 25, 2014
at 04:37 PM

Curried goat, lamb, eggs, fish, specify that you'd like it cooked in cow ghee rather than vegetable oil/ghee, and use veggies or tubers as the base of the dish rather than rice. India or not I have that for dinner every night.

0
E0a0288c8f32a9e2eb0b2b3195631112

on June 25, 2014
at 12:28 PM

India is known as the country of varied spices; hence you are definitely going to have spicy food here. Anywhere you go; there you will find variety of restaurant, hotels and food junctions whose information you can see on extcity that offers variety of food options at fair price. What so special about Indian food is their way of making and taste which you will truly not found anywhere else in the world.

0
46cae7f1e595abdc1202bc64a48334d9

on November 01, 2012
at 12:04 PM

One interesting this is that the Desi Egg phenominon applies to all meats as well. You can get Desi Murghi (chicken) and Desi Mutton (lamb) and it means free range(ish). You tend to find these at the markets but not really an option at restaurants.

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