Very Berry Strawberry

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From the desk of Dr Nandita Shah

The best thing about eating seasonally is that we can appreciate nature’s variety and gifts. January and February in India is the time for strawberries, and for Gujaratis Ponkh and Undhyu. In the North, its time for peaches, apricots, plums, pears and cherries and in the South its the season for passionfruit, sweet corn. Its also the season for oranges, sweet lime and grapes! And how could I forget the greens? We have all kinds of lettuce, rucola, kale and other greens in plenty at this time of the year. And tomatoes too. Though we are used to having tomatoes all year round, these have to be grown in the hills.

If you have green smoothies every morning, you are probably enjoying nature’s bounty now. If you are not, don’t forget to try some. My favourite is banana, strawberry and passionfruit with greens.

One word of caution – strawberries, cherries and grapes are grown conventionally with large amounts of pesticides. Farmers literally dip the grape bunches in pesticides. Its worth every single effort to avoid these poisons and buy organic produce. The fruits taste better than ever, have higher nutrition and help you heal.

Once the cool season wanes, the reds (strawberries, cherries, tomatoes, plums and grapes) reduce and then come the mangoes. Isn’t nature wonderful? Enjoy the fruits of this and every season.


Testimonial of Madhu Lilothia

Madhu Lilothia, who is the deputy manager at Air India, earlier believed that she could only live upto the age of 60 years and now she  is sure that she can live up to 100 years if she follows the whole-plant based diet. Listen to her story where she explains how she has improved her diabetes, blood pressure and her thyroid levels too…

Strawberry Tart

Here is a delicious strawberry tart recipe. Do remember the 10 nuts a day rule though! Also you could also replace the cashews with tender coconut cream too!

Ingredients for crust

  • 1 cup raw almonds

  • ½ cup large dates, pitted

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • pinch of salt

Ingredients for cream

  • 1 cup cashews, soaked 2-4 hours and drained

  • 1/4 cup water

  • 1/4 date paste

  • 2 tbsp lime juice

Ingredients for topping

  • 2 cups sliced strawberries


In a food processor, pulse the almonds into a flour. Add the dates, vanilla extract and salt. Pulse until the mixture begins to clump together. Press firmly and evenly into a 9 inch springform pan. Set aside in the refrigerator. In a blender combine the cream ingredients until smooth. Pour the cream over the crust and assemble the strawberries.

Serves 5-6

Food for Thought

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Strawberries are health beauties in disguise!

Did you know that in ancient Roman literature, its mentioned that strawberries were used for medicinal purpose! Yes these juicy, attractive and delicious berries are nutrient rich too! They are packed with antioxidants like Vitamin C and have a whole load of surprising health benefits!

Plus they are low in calories, fat-free, high in water content and low on both sodium and sugar! Nature’s health is so sweet, so rosy and cannot harm but only heal (subject you buy organic of course). We just need to embrace it all and it works wonders for us…

Read 10 reasons why you should eat strawberries…

1. Boost immunity

Since strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, they are immunity boosters as well as powerful anti-oxidants!

2. Promote eye health

The Vitamin C factor in them also help to prevent cataracts and act as a protective shield, strengthening the eye’s cornea and retina.

3. Help fight cancer

The ellagic acid found in strawberries has anti-cancer properties like suppressing cancer cell growth. Also with the presence of anti-oxidants, they neutralize the potentially negative effect on our cells.

4. Are wrinkle fighters

With production of collagen, the skin’s elasticity improves and this results in younger and healthier looking skin.

5. Fight bad cholesterol

They contain powerful heart health boosters by counteracting the effect of LDL – bad cholesterol. This helps in diabetes prevention too.

6. Reduce inflammation

Research shows that women who eat 16 or more strawberries per week are 14% less likely to have inflammation in the body. This helps

7. Regulate blood pressure

Strawberries are a medium source of potassium which help in regulating blood pressure..

8. Boosts fibre in-take

Which in turn helps in digestion.

9. Pregnancy

Strawberries also have folic acid

10. Depression

Mood lifters indeed!

This newsletter was compiled by SHARAN Associate Reyna K Rupani, who is based in Mumbai. She facilitates the Six Weeks to Health & Weight loss program and also conducts Health talks for schools, groups, corporates and more. Find out how she has benefited in so many ways by going on a whole plant-based diet here

Sanctuary for Health and Re-connection to Animals and Nature (SHARAN) is a non-profit organisation with the goal of spreading awareness about holistic health and an ecologically sustainable compassionate lifestyle.

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