Come August, celebrations kick in as families across India prepare for the festival of Rakshabandhan. The occasion honours the bond between siblings, the promise of unwavering support and the vow of protection every brother takes to safeguard his sister which is symbolized by tying a simple thread or ‘rakhi’ on the brother’s wrist.
Sharing of gifts is an important traditional aspect of the Rakshabandhan festivities. This year, as people continue to adapt to the pandemic, family health has become even a higher priority. Therefore, it’s pertinent to relook at one’s gifting choices, and instead share thoughtful gifts like almonds that will add to the receiver’s health. Almonds are a source of nutrients such as vitamin E, magnesium, protein, riboflavin, zinc etc. which are required for a healthy life. Regular almond consumption has also been scientifically proven to provide benefits across heart health, diabetes and weight management and skin health. Besides these, almonds are quick to flavour, pair well with several Indian spices, and are also known to provide satiating properties which makes a good snack. With this bouquet of health benefits that almonds offer, they are definitely a great gift for siblings to share with each other to celebrate Rakshabandhan.
Leading Bollywood actress Soha Ali Khan said, “Rakshabandhan is a great occasion to spend quality time with the family and exchange gifts. When it comes to choosing gifts, my approach is always to pick options that seem thoughtful and will add value to the loved one’s life in some way or the other. Almonds are a personal favourite for me, as they contain a variety of nutrients including vitamin B2, phosphorus, magnesium, protein, etc. which are important to lead a healthy life. Additionally, almonds also contain zinc, copper, folate and iron, each of which is known to contribute to a normal function of the immune system. Gifting almonds signify gifting good health to my siblings!”
Adding onto Soha’s views, Integrative Nutritionist and Health Coach, Neha Ranglani said, “As most of us prepare to celebrate Rakshabandhan amidst the ongoing pandemic again this year, it’s important to put our learnings from the past to good use. Instead of sharing calorie-laden sweets or chocolates with loved ones, opt for raw, roasted, salted or flavoured almonds. Almonds are known to be nutrient-dense, which makes them a tasty and healthy snack that can be consumed anytime during the day. Beyond this, regular almond consumption can also be beneficial to the immune system as they are high in Vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant to support pulmonary immune function. Vitamin E is also known to offer protection against infections caused by viruses and bacteria.”
Regional Head-Dietetics, Max Healthcare –Delhi, Ritika Samaddar mentioned, “As we all learn to adapt to this new sense of normal and continue to celebrate festivals while taking all the safety precautions, it’s important to revise one’s gifting choices too. In India, nuts like almonds have traditionally been considered as an auspicious gift, and the health benefits they offer are innumerable. When choosing gifts for people who are mindful of heart health, almonds can be a wonderful option. Almonds have been shown to lower total and LDL cholesterol when included in a healthy diet and can help reduce levels of heart-damaging inflammation. Research also suggests that almond snacking can reduce adjusted relative risk of cardiovascular disease by about 30%, and improve endothelial function and cardiac autonomic function.” Sheela Krishnaswamy, Nutrition and Wellness Consultant said, “The ongoing pandemic has highlighted more than ever the need to invest in one’s health and strive for a better lifestyle.