We are habituated to serve health drinks to our kids for their better nutrition. But commercial health drinks are actually loaded with preservatives, artificial sugars and many other chemicals. It is better to avoid these health drinks and to prepare health drinks for your kids with investing little efforts, time and energy.
Advantages of home-made health drinks
Home made health drink has many advantages over the commercially available health drinks which are listed below-
- It is fresh and pure
- It does not contain any preservatives
- It is not supplying too much sugar
- It does not contain ultra processed foods
- It is loaded with the goodness of natural foods.
- Pocket friendly
- Tasty and nutritious
- Variety can be introduced tweaking the recipe
The disadvantages –
Home made health drinks also few drawbacks which include-
- Take certain time and effort
- Since the home-made drinks do not contain any preservatives, it has a lesser shelf life.
How can you overcome these drawbacks?
- Please store your prepared health drink mix in the refrigerator, it can be kept for more than 2 weeks.
- Prepare the mix for 15 days, not more than that.
- Select easily available, nutritious foods as ingredients.
How to prepare home-made health drink for all ?
You should follow the five basic steps–
- Selection of Ingredients
- Processing of ingredients
- Mixing of ingredients
- Ensuring proper storage of the health drink mix
- Serving the health drinks to your kids on a regular basis
Preparation Time: 8 to 10 hours (Don’t worry!! it include soaking time)
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Step-1: Selection of Ingredients
This is the most important step for preparing a home-made drink. The list of ingredients is mentioned in table-1.
Table-1: List of ingredients
|Whole milk powder||20%|
Table-2 clearly explain the nutritional contribution and other roles of selected ingredients.
Table-2: Selection of ingredients based on their nutritional contributions
|Selection of Ingredients||Nutritional Contribution||Other roles|
|Whole milk powder||Protein and fat||–|
|Oats||Carbohydrate: Polysaccharides||Rich in fibre|
|Almond||Carbohydrates, Proteins and fats||Impart good flavours, texture and colour|
|Watermelon seeds||Rich in proteins and fats Supplies dietary fibre||Improves general health and boost immunity|
|Honey||Carbohydrate: Simple sugars||Helps in preservation|
|Turmeric powder||Rich in minerals||Rich in antioxidants Imparts colour|
|Elaichi or cardamom||Rich in antioxidants Imparts good flavour|
You can introduce more variety in the home-made health drinks by replacing one or more ingredients.
Table-3: Alternatives of basic ingredients to be used to introduce more variety
|Basic Ingredients used||Replacing the basic ingredients with alternative ingredients||Advantages||Disadvantages|
|Whole milk powder||Skimmed milk powder||Contain more protein||Contains less fat|
|Oats||Germinated wheat or barley||Introduce variety||Require more time and efforts for the processing|
|Almond||Groundnuts||Reduces the cost of the health drink||It is comparatively less tasteful|
|Watermelon seeds||Pumpkin seeds||Introduce variety||Increases the cost of the product|
|Honey||Jaggery||Introduce variety||Typical smell and colour of the jaggery may reduce food acceptability|
|Turmeric powder||Kesar||Improves the colour and aroma||Make the drink more costly|
|Elaichi or cardamom||Artificial flavour like vanilla.||Introduce variety||It is a chemical ingredient which is better to avoid.|
Step-2: Processing of ingredients
All the ingredients should be processed properly for obtaining good quality health drink mix. Detail processing methods are mentioned in the table-3.
Table-4: Detail processing methods of individual ingredients
|Basic Ingredients||Processing and/or cooking||Reason for processing|
|Whole milk powder||No processing is required||–|
|Oats||Roast the oats on the dry tawa for 2 minutes.Grind them finely using a mixer grinder.||Roasting reduces the water content and emits good flavour.|
|Almond||Soak the few almonds overnight.Remove the outer skin.Roast them on the tawa at low flame for 5 minutes with constant stirring.Grind them at slow speed for 2 minutes.||Soaking the almonds helps to remove the outer skin. Roasting at low flame reduces the water content of the nut without imparting any burning flavour.|
|Watermelon seeds||Dry roast these seeds for 2 minutes at low flame.Grind them at slow speed.||Improves aroma|
|Honey||No processing is required||–|
|Turmeric powder||No processing is required||–|
|Elaichi or cardamom||Remove the green coloured outer skin of the elaichi.Grind them at low speed for 3 minutes to get a fine powder.||Cardamom powder has an excellent aroma.|
Step-3: Mixing of ingredients
Mix the processed ingredients in the following manner-
- At first mix the two powdered ingredients, whole milk powder and roasted oats powder.
- Then add a pinch of turmeric powder and one teaspoon of cardamom powder to the mixture.
- Mix well using a spatula.
- Add the almond paste and honey to it.
- Stir, stir and stir. Mix very well without allowing the formation of any granules.
Now your home-made, ready-to-eat health drink mix is ready.
Step-4:Storage of the health drink mix
Fill an air-tight glass bottle with the home-made health drink mix, tightly cover the lid.Store the container in the refrigerator. The ready-to-eat mix can be stored in good condition in the refrigerator for 2 weeks.
Step-5: Serving the health drinks
- Take a glass of warm water or milk, add two scoops of ready to eat health drink mix, stir well. Serve to your kid with love. He/ she will enjoy it.
- Otherwise, you may prepare porridge with it. Such porridge with little suji and /or milk is appropriate for the toddlers (1 to 3 years of age).
- You may also serve the porridge to the elderly with some fresh fruits.
Caution: There is no need to add extra sugar because already honey is there to make your health drink/ porridge tasty.
Nutritive value of home-made health drink
The nutritive value of thehome-made health drink is calculated based on the values given in the “Nutritive value of Indian Foods by c Gopalan”.
Table-5:Nutritive value of 100 g of Home-made Health Drink
|Crude Fibre||4.73 g|
The nutritive value of the health drink shows that
- It is a high calorie food, satisfying the energy needs of growing kids.
- It is rich in protein, satisfying the high protein needs for ensuring the rapid growth of the kids.
- It is a combination of 1/3rd of animal protein (milk protein) and 2/3rd of plant protein, ideal for the growth of kids. There is also a mutual supplementation of cereal proteins (oats protein) with nuts protein and seeds protein. Overall, the health drink contains good quality protein.
- The fat content of the health drink is also satisfactory, not too high, not too low. The fat present in the health drink is mostly coming from the plant foods whereas some amount is supplied by animal sources (milk fat). So, there is a balance of all types of fatty acids.
- The health drink also rich in many minerals.
- Spices like turmeric and cardamom are rich in antioxidants.
- Since, the basic ingredients, like oats, almonds, watermelon seeds, honey, turmeric, cardamom etc. have certain medicinal benefits, they are helpful to prevent diseases and maintain good general health.
- It is rich in fibre, which is helpsto ensure regular elimination.