Over the past few years, India has earned itself the dubious title of ‘the diabetes capital of the world.’ Around 50 million people in the country suffer from type 2 diabetes while 77 million of the population are considered to be pre-diabetics; where one’s glucose levels are higher than normal.
It’s in the face of these disheartening statistics that Seema and Manoj Pinto started The Diabetic Food Trail last year. Seema, who is a diabetic herself, realised that diabetics dining out had very few food options that were both healthy and delicious. So, she and Manoj began working with chefs at India’s top restaurants to design special menus which are diabetic friendly, which were then given as menu options to guests for the duration of the trail.
Commenting on the initiative, Seema said “With the current lifestyle being what it is, it isn’t uncommon for people to get diabetes at an early age. Most people are not aware that they are pre-diabetic and can postpone the onset of diabetes with a well-managed diet and fitness programme. This is a humble initiative on our part to make people aware and take action”
Last year, the diabetic food trail, which is presented by Semora Entertainment Works, began on November 14th and continued until the end of November at over 120 restaurants across 4 cities.
The Diabetic Food Trail 2016
This year, the Diabetic Food Trail kicked off on November 12th and has 200 participating restaurants across Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore and Pune serving specially crafted, diabetic friendly dishes.
Presented by Britannia Nutrichoice Essentials (which has a range of diabetic friendly biscuits) and in association with Biocon, one of India’s largest insulin companies, it has also partnered with Fitternity.com, Health & Nutrition and Buurp.
Commenting on Season 2 of the Diabetic Food Trail, Seema said ““The focus of the second edition is on Diet and Fitness in effective Diabetes management. For a person with diabetes, eating nutritious and well-balanced meals with a regular fitness routine is vital in managing diabetes. This applies to pre-diabetics and the health conscious too.”
This year, therefore, the Diabetic Food Trail includes Diabetic Master classes, which will help participants understand the ingredients and nutritional values in foods as well as learn healthy recipes and the Diabetic Fitness Bootcamps, hosted by Fitternity which will have fitness classes tailored for diabetics.
Naturally, the trail this year will also feature special menus from participating restaurants including The Sassy Spoon, Farzi Cafe, Woodside Inn and Mirchi and Mime.
Dessert Love In Mumbai
The Diabetic Food Trail came to lifef or us last Sunday in Mumbai when we embarked on the Diabetic Dessert Trail. It’s exactly what it sounds like; a dessert trail for sweet tooth’s with desserts that are thoroughly diabetic friendly.
We began the trail at The Sassy Spoon at Nariman Point, which is already much loved across the city for its quirky interiors and delicious fare. Seema, Manoj and Chef Irfaan of The Sassy Spoon welcomed us and Seema gave us a background of the Diabetic Food Trail, her enthusiasm for the initiative as well as healthy eating in general shining through.
We were then presented with a platter of three desserts; a Berry Cheesecake, a Blueberry Pannacotta and a Sweet Potato Cake, all of which were – naturally – sugar free. Our favourite of the lot was the Blueberry Pannacotta which had a wonderfully silky texture, followed by the Sour Cherry Cheesecake with a layer of crumbly biscuits topped by creamy cheese topped by wonderfully biting sour cherries.
We then hopped over to Flamboyante at the World Trade Center in Cuffe Parade where we were treated to a thick Chia Seed Pudding and a delicious Sugar Free Museli and Berry Cheese Cake.
Following this, we went to The Pantry Cafe at Fort, which is one of our favourite haunts for breakfast and healthy juices. On Sunday however, we enjoyed a Mint Tea Pannacotta and a Lemon Thyme Pistachio Cheesecake, which beautifully balanced sour and sweet flavours.
We then stepped into Tea Trails next door to try the Lemon Curd and Red Zen Cheesecake and the Matcha Crepes with Seville Sauce. The Matcha Crepes, which were infused with matcha powder and stuffed with crumbly cheese were an unusual treat as was the sweet Seville sauce which accompanied them.
Finally, we headed to our last stop; Lemon Leaf in a quiet lane in Colaba, where Chef Mitesh had prepared a chocolate pudding with NutriChoice Essnetials Oats cookies, Sago & Coconut pudding and Strawberry Cookie Ice cream. Our favourite was the chocolate pudding which was rich and nutty, followed by the Sago and Coconut Pudding which was warm, thick and topped with delicious fresh fruits.
We walked away from the Trail with a hearty smiles on our faces, buoyed by the fact that everything we had eaten was sugar free and low on calories and fat. Indeed, the beauty of the Diabetic Food Trail and a restaurant having diabetic friendly dishes is that they benefit not just a diabetic, but any person who wants to eat healthier. It’s for this reason that Seema and Manoj hope to see the Diabetic Food Trail grow in the coming years – from an event where restaurants have diabetic menus for a couple of weeks to an initiative where they have these menus all year long.