In many of my live sessions on my YouTube channel We R Stupid, I have consistently asked all my viewers and clients in India, to study nutrition from the Indian perspective. I mostly refer to many amazing Indian textbooks on nutrition and believe me they are as good as their international counterparts. But the best thing is that, you get to study nutrition from the perspective of the Indian diet, which is the most important but extremely neglected information.
Just like other things, we Indians have an innate attachment to anything western, even if it is of inferior quality. We always think, that is it is international, it would be automatically better. But, this is far from the truth. We should evaluate and analyze each thing individually, not based on our preconceived perceptions.
The best part about Indian textbooks on nutrition is not just the good content, but the extremely affordable price, as compared to international books, which may cost a bomb, sometimes as much as eight to twelve thousand for a single book.
Also, I would be limiting my recommendations initially to textbooks on nutrition, not diet books. Nutrition is first studied from proper books, not from popular diet books.
Here are my top recommendations:
Dietetics: This book presents latest information and exhaustive and up-to- date exposition of nutrition and food requirements during different stages of life cycle and during various disease conditions. It describes in detail the nutritional and food requirements for adults, infants, children, adolescents and ageing persons. It explains the nutritional and food requirements of expectant and lactating mothers. It highlights the correct diet in cases of fever, obesity, anaemia, diabetes mellitus, ulcers, food sensitivity and diseases of the gastrointestinal disorders, heart, liver and kidneys .Includes chapters on diet in cases of cancer and genetic disorders. Importance is given to adjuncts to diet therapy like physical activity for all age groups and conditions in line with lifestyle modifications. Food is valued not only for its nutritive value but also for its health value. The role of functional foods is discussed in all the chapters. It also gives recent advances in food, nutrition and drug interaction and a special emphasis on nutritional management in aids. Over all preventive nutrition is emphasised along with therapeutic nutrition. With all these features this is an essential textbook for undergraduate and postgraduate courses on nutrition and dietetics. This book is ready reckoner for practicing dietitians and a reference book for medical and paramedical. This book would also be extremely useful to the general public as an authoritative reference source.
Food Science: The study of Food Science emphasises on the composition of foods and the changes that occur when they are subjected to processing. The amount of nutrients present in different foods and the effect of cooking are part of the study of food science. As the demand for processed food is increasing, knowledge on food additives, convenience foods, packaging and labelling of foods is essential for a student of food science. Since the harmful effects of fertilisers and pesticides are being realised, the importance of ‘Organic Food’ is brought out as a separate chapter. To improve the nutritional status, food fortification and biofortification are essential. Indians are getting exposed to foods and recipes of foreign origin. Some have already crept into the Indian kitchen. A new chapter ‘World-wide Cuisine’ is given in this edition to familiarise the students
with global cuisine. This book focusses not only on the basic facts but also reflects the recent advances in food science. The topics cover the syllabi of all Indian universities. With its detailed coverage and simple style of presentation, this is a text book for BSc. Food and Nutrition students and a reference book for MSc. students.
Nutrition Science: Nutrition is the science of food and its relationship to health. This textbook covers syllabi of basic and applied nutrition science of all Indian universities. Nutrients and the effect of deficiency are discussed in detail. Antioxidants which are essential for preventing degenerative diseases are explained well in this book. The chapter ‘Nutrigenomics’ explains how dietary chemicals affect the balance between health and disease by altering genetic makeup.Challenges of Millennium Development Goals, National nutrition policies and organisations and programmes related to Nutrition are discussed.This book serves as textbook for basic as well as applied nutrition science for those specialising in Nutrition Science at graduate and postgraduate levels. This book is valuable for medical and paramedical students and foradministrative authorities who are interested in getting authentic information on Nutrition Science.
2. Food Science and Nutrition – Sunetra Roday – provides complete and exhaustive coverage of topics related to food science, food safety, and nutrition. It is aimed at students of undergraduate, diploma, or certificate courses in hotel management, hospitality studies, and catering technology. The book is designed keeping in mind the changing trends in hospitality and food business operators. The Food Science section of the book covers carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables, browning reactions, and evaluation of food, etc., whereas the Food Safety section covers food microbiology, food processing and preservation, and regulatory agencies and food quality standards. The text ends with a section on Nutrition covering vitamins, minerals, proteins in nutrition, new trends in food and nutrition, etc.
3.Nutrition & Dietetics – Shubhangini Joshi –this is one of the most extensive Indian textbooks on nutrition & dietetics, which encompasses all the fundamentals of the subject—role of nutrients,balanced diet, diet therapy for cardiovascular, kidney, and liver diseases; food safety measures, along with case studies for students, teachers, practicing nutritionists and dietitians
4.Fundamentals of Food, Nutrition & Diet Therapy – Sumati R.
Mudambi – this book has consistently been used by students studying the first course in Food Science and Nutrition.In several universities, diet therapy topics have been added in the curricula of this course. Therefore, diet therapy has been added in this revision, with a hope of meeting the changing needs of the readers in this area. This book incorporates topics which are related to useful subjects, like nursing, education, art, social sciences, home science, medical and paramedical sciences, agriculture, community health, environmental health and paediatrics etc.
The book is intended to be an ideal textbook encompassing the following aspects: Introduction to the Study of Nutrition, Nutrients and Energy, Foods, Meal Planning and Management, Diet Therapy Various modifications have been done along with clear illustrations, charts and tables for visualised practical knowledge. Appendices include abbreviations, food exchange lists, recommended dietary allowances for Indians and food composition tables..
5.Principles of Therapeutic Nutrition & Dietetics – Dr. Avantika Sharma
– this is one of the most extensive and must have texts on nutrition and provides a 360deg perspective to management of chronic diseases. This book has been written in a manner as to provide useful information to a layman as well as an undergraduate or a postgraduate students pursuing specialized courses in nutrition & dietetics.
6.Nutritional Guidelines for Sportspersons – Geetanjali Bhide & Subhadra Mandalika – this book equips a nutritionist, student, coach, fitness trainer, and an athlete with all the information needed to devise a diet plan that helps to train, sustain, perform and excel in sports.
It is a comprehensive book divided into two sections that describe concepts in sports nutrition and sports specific nutrition and dietary guidelines, which are further divided into 15 chapters. First section begins with an introduction of the reader to the basics of nutrition, exercise, physical activity and also gives a broad classification of different sports(endurance, power/strength, team, weight class, racket sports). The second and third chapters explain bioenergetics of exercise and fuel utilization, body composition assessment, its need, methods used and factors influencing the same. Classification, functions in relation to exercise or sport, requirements, metabolism, factors influencing use in exercise and sources of macronutrients are broadly discussed in three chapters. The second section focuses on the practical aspects of nutrition and begins with the essentials of dietary planning for athletes. The present book will definitely be an important resource of reference for academicians, students from nutrition and sports related fields, coaches and sportspersons.
Apart from the above recommended textbooks, one must also have the reference textbooks published by various Indian nutrition authorities like the National Institute of Nutrition & Indian Council of Medical Research.
Here are the books you must have:
Akshay Chopra is a renowned fitness professional, a speaker , a writer and the owner of Indias research based platform, Werstupid. He has been transforming lives, and has addressed many a people with motivational words. Known as the Encyclopaedia of Fitness Industry, his knowledge is unparalleled.
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