Healthy eating is the talk of the town. From eating raw food to reducing sugar and salt intakes, people are beginning to get cautious about what they eat and are looking for new ways to get healthy. So it’s not surprising that when we asked Chef Arimbi Nimpuno about this topic, she had a lot to say—she’s a big proponent of healthy eating.
A celebrity chef who is well known for her popular cooking show on the Asia Food Channel, Chef Arimbi is also known for her private dining and cooking classes at Tree Food Concept, which caters to a high-end clientele. Read about her take on healthy eating.
How do you define healthy eating?
Healthy eating is all about balance. If you’re planning to eat healthfully, you need to do it slowly. You can’t go from one extreme diet to another in a matter of days because you still need your proteins, carbs, and fruit and vegetables, as well as your sugar and salt. Start slow and make sure you still get all the nutrients you need and adjust it accordingly along the way.
What are the healthy food trends in 2016?
I think people are now looking for alternative foods from other countries; for example, Mediterranean cooking is a trend because of its healthy ingredients, like olive oil, fresh vegetables as well as herbs like basil and oregano to enhance the flavours. This also makes it adaptable to Indonesians’ taste buds. Meanwhile, Nordic cooking is also a trend because of its simple style, since it makes use of fresh seafood but reduces salt. Interestingly, I have seen more and more people in Indonesia start to alter their cooking choices. They don’t use coconut milk, for example, and opt instead for yoghurt or sour cream for Indonesian dishes.
Share with us your favourite healthy recipes.
I believe that healthy meals don’t need to be boring: you can still be creative. For example, I’m inspired by my daughter’s breakfast regime: she likes to mix yoghurt and fruit and various seeds like chia seeds and flax seeds. And for bigger meals, we could use hummus or garbanzo beans, plus olive oil, lemon and garlic, and eat it with grilled fish or chicken or meat. For Indonesian dishes, I like to use ayam woku and mix and match it by using ginger and coriander instead of coconut milk.
What are the common misconceptions about healthy eating and lifestyles?
First of all, you need to know your own body and its limits. You also need to have the right mindset because you can’t lead a healthy lifestyle if you don’t want to live healthfully in the first place. It requires a lot of discipline and for certain habits to be altered. Age also needs to be taken into consideration. If you’re a young person trying to be healthy then your body can adjust easily, but if you are older you need to take into consideration the time it takes in adjusting your diet and exercise plans. I have seen few people who went extreme and cut down their salt intake and then did extreme sports without letting their bodies rest, and they suffered major consequences afterwards. People want instant results when they try healthy lifestyles but it takes some time for the results to show.