Beef is no more the sole food culprit that has our politicians concerned. Forget war and other crisis, food is what gets them wide awake and aware and drives them to save the human race. The biggest irony is that the call for ban on a north-Indian staple food momos is coming from a Jammu legislator Ramesh Arora. Not just the place where he hails from is the hub of momos but also we are sure that Jammu has better problems to pay heed to rather than raise concern on what one should eat to stay healthy and what not.
Politics of food aside, momos is sold all over the nation mostly as street food which brings us to think if they are really healthy enough to be consumed largely by the entire population.
Monosodium glutamate or ajinomoto has permissible limits but there are chances that the makers who are usually street food vendors are ignorant of the facts and could increase the limits to enhance taste. It is a cancer causing agent if consumed above the limits hence a ban should be called for.
It is made from processed all purpose flour which gives acidity, belching, constipation and flatulence. Regular consumption leads to obesity and related disorders like diabetes and coronary. Most importantly, they are prepared under low hygienic conditions which can lead to food poisoning. It is addicting and even though once or twice a month will not hurt, people get used to eating it more regularly.
Ban the harmful ingredient:
If ajinomoto is the real culprit, the usage of this Chinese ingredient should be banned on all dishes served across the country in both street food as well as restaurant food. Banning select dishes like momos which is loved by the people is like declaring war on food. A strict ban could be instead implemented on the usage of the harmful ingredient.
Why on a particular food?
Ajinomoto is added in most Chinese and Japanese cuisines to enhance flavours. On street food, the permissible limits could easily be crossed. What is unusual is that the MLC decided to start the campaign for ban only against momos, as if it is real culprit of unhealthy eating and obesity in India. Surely there are better issues for a legislator of J&K to concentrate on rather than the ill effects of unhealthy eating. Leave that to the dieticians, please!
No solid evidence:
There is no documented evidence to prove the health hazards of ajinomoto. Chinese and Japanese have forever been using the ingredient in their cuisines and surely they are not the ones suffering the worst number of health hazard diseases. Carcinogen is predicted in a lot of other things of general usage too. There has not been a ban on tobacco or alcohol for that reason. Spare the innocent momos!
Distracting as always:
When a legislator of a war-like zone is declaring war on food rather than seeking solution to the forever spawning enmity in the locality, people will have no better words than distraction for the politician doing what he can do best – distract the people from the real issues by banning a food. There are surely more important issues that should have interested the legislator instead of momos.
They are steamed:
Yes, like all other street food they are unhygienic and have health concerns that come with junk food but they go easy on oil and are steamed instead of those deep fried delicacies we devour on. There are also healthy versions of momos made from whole wheat and sans ajinomoto which are guilt free too.
A ban on momos after beef and maggi row is simply a waste of time and concern. If the minister is concerned about the health implications of MSG, surely he could have raised the ban campaign against ajinomoto but it seems he was ill prepared to handle the pouring questions of his real intentions which pretty much aims at food policing and not healthy eating.
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