Vox popli: Good food, chit-chat and obesity!
From past many years, Kashmir has witnessed upward trend rise in the establishment of fast food outlets. While this food culture is new and exciting for the people of Kashmir, these outlets have also opened many opportunities for employment here too. However, the very idea of fast food invokes two main feelings in anyone’s mind- one that the food is tasty and quick to get and second that it comes with a set of hazardous effects on health. In this regard, Kashmir Images reporter UFAQ FATIMA talked to some people from different walks of life to seek their opinion on the proliferation of fast food outlets in Kashmir.
Fast food is great for occasional consumption and adds fun to parties. However, excessive consumption of fast food to the extent that they replace the normal nutritious diet of a person can lead to various metabolic disorders including obesity, diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke etc. The employment opportunities these outlets have opened in Kashmir are appreciable. However, awareness about the health hazards of fast foods must be spread to decrease the rapidly growing rate of metabolic disorders in Kashmir and around the globe.
Jasim Rashid, MBBS Student
Fast food restaurants have dramatically changed our way of eating and therefore our Life. Besides being a time-saving thing it has many other things to offer that we as a society are collectively happy of having “any time tasty food”. In addition to this, these outlets are also emerging as socialising hubs and are also generating employment in Kashmir. But everything that comes with so many good things is also bound to have drawbacks too. Not to put the whole blame on fast food restaurants but they are, to a large extent, responsible for the unhealthy lifestyle that we Kashmiris have gradually adopted over these years. However, I feel we should embrace this trend with open arms and a balance can always be made which is where we Kashmiris mostly fail at.
Mir Tabish, Engineering Student
Mushrooming of fast food restaurants in Kashmir has paved way for economic growth and employment opportunities but at the same time, hygiene factors are must to be taken into consideration. These food items usually are processed ones and are prepared very quickly which is definitely not a healthy way of preparing any food. Moreover, regular inspection of these outlets is a must to check on the hygiene and pricing of the products sold.
Saqib Majeed, Photographer
In my opinion, these fast food outlets are directly contributing to the increasing obesity rates across Kashmir. Adolescents are tempted by the food items being provided by these outlets. It has become an easy choice for teens not even realising its adverse impact on the health. It is the duty of government to be vigilant enough on these outlets so that they the health of people remains first priority.
Aliya Jeelani, Arts student
Most of the restaurants in Kashmir are influenced by Western or Indian food and thus demeans the Kashmiri local delicacies. The foods they serve usually have a high content of cholesterol and fats. These food habits have led to an increase in diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart problems. Besides this, cooks of these outlets are usually non-local which again is not helping the locals here. Looking on the brighter side of this, these outlets are more than just food junctions and many restaurants here organise debates, discussions, music and book launching functions which brings people closer at societal level and such activities also create awareness about many social issues.
Basit Alam, Engineer
Recently I saw more than three fast food restaurants being opened in our locality. It definitely has generated a good employment opportunity. Besides this, these outlets are a good place to chill with friends and eat the tasty food. But I am cautious enough to keep check on the ingredients used in food items to avoid any health issues.
Yamin Pandit, Mass communication Student