Health benefits and other advantages of using earthen pots in your kitchen

benefits of using earthen pots

Randomly go to your or any of your known people’s kitchens, what material utensils you will find? Ceramics, glass, silicone, steel, aluminum, Teflon, etc. How many of you will find earthenwares? What, earthenware, that our nani ki nani used to cook food! Don’t be silly, this is the modern era, and how come so-called modernized people use that old-fashioned, outdated, and boring thing? Do you think the same? Then most probably now or shortly you would love to spend your time running to hospitals and medicals. Today we will be talking, about how this so-called urbanization is slowly ruining our lives and how important it is for us to go back to our culture and practices. 

What are Earthenwares vessels or earthen pots? 

Earthenwares or earthen pots; something which was inseparable from our kitchens, something which was a reason for tremendous health in our parents and grandparents and theirs. But due to westernization, from the last 3-40 years we have forgotten and discarded this gem! Earthenwares; or things/vessels made of rough clay. They are often shaped by hand and come in different varieties like terracotta, clay pots, porcelain, etc. Earthenwares are porous, opaque, and coarse in texture. 

Which Earthenware or earthen pot is best for use?

Mostly all the earthenwares are best, as they are made of natural things and less artificial glaze and other substances. Black clay pots of jugs are better for preserving water, they keep the liquid cool, Whereas red clay vessels are best for cooking and other. Black clay vessels are nothing but heat for a prolonged period than red ones. They get different colours and textures making them different. Overall all the earthenwares are good and better than any other materials like aluminum and others. 

earthen pots

Earthen pots over other materials:

Many of us may find this statement bitter as most of us fall into this category only! Our 90% of the vessels we use are like time bombs! They will not explode now, but as it will come to an extent our whole health system will deteriorate and we won’t even understand what the causative factors were! Let’s begin with the commonly used vessels now; steel and ceramics! 

Although steel is not so bad for health, it is stainless, durable, and tough. But, the preparation of steel vessels matters! If it is not made in the right way, with the right proportion then it can be very harmful. It may lead to metal leaching, which over time may damage organs. So while buying steel utensils, make sure they are of good quality and assured ones.  

Coming to ceramics which are very popular these days. Ceramics utensils may give a very modern and high-class look; but is this same with health too? Ceramics are highly glazed and thus over time can result in glaze/lead leaching which may lead to food poisoning, stomach disorders, and many more. Ceramics looks beautiful because of its lead glazing, if the glazing is proper and done under high quality then it may not harm much but most of the porcelain can link to major illnesses like thyroid, BP, cancers, and all such. 

Aluminum is too widely used mostly as saucepans, pressure cookers, aluminum foils, voks (kadhai), etc. According to recent studies, regular use of aluminum may lead to Alzheimer’s disease, eczema, kidney disorders, urinary infections, arthritis, weaker bones, etc.

When we cook food in aluminum vessels, it reacts with acidic ingredients like tomato, vinegar, lime, curd, etc. Due to this the aluminium ions dissolve and go inside our body through the food. 

Same with Teflon coatings, under a certain temperature it is safe but in high temperatures, it begins to break and releases harmful fumes which are very fatal for health. Teflon contains perfluorooctanoic acid or PFOA which can be also found in high-quality Teflon utensils. 

Shall we wholly switch to Earthen pots? 

When speaking practically, it is not 100% possible for us to switch to earthenware. This can be a time-consuming process to adjust and use. So what can be done, to avoid any more damage from these? One thing we can do is that you by today itself. Instead of full-on switching, you can get an earthen pot or handi to prepare dals, curries, etc. It will be a wise switch to kadai and pans. Over that, we can also use earthen tawa and earthen pan as well. At first, it may look a little different and a very new experience, you may burn your food or may feel it’s too time-consuming, but trust me when you experience its magical taste and know about its benefits you would like to replace all sorts of cooking ware with earthen ones! 

earthen pots sets

Now we shall be moving to the most important point, the Health benefits of using earthen cookware. Now this is gonna be a complete game changer! It’s not just that we are putting ice on the cake, and telling all such true and untrue things. Following we will discuss the benefits that actually exist and are proven by different studies and research done. 

Proven Health benefits of using Earthen pots:

  1. Balances the pH of the food-  Clay is a substance that in its original form is alkaline in nature. It neutralizes the acid present in food, keeping its pH levels in balance. Thus our food becomes easy to digest and abides by any toxins that are produced due to alkalinity of the food. 
  2. Keeps the nutrition in its wholesome form- You know when we cook our food in vessels of aluminium, steel, or Teflon,  50% of its nutrition is burnt due to heavy temperatures and overheating and hardly we get 13-20% of food nutrition, but the same is opposite with earthenware. When we cook our food in earthenware, it maintains the temperature allowing the food cooked to be fully nutritious and healthy. Additionally, food cooked in earthenware has a high ratio of calcium, magnesium,  zinc, iron, and other minerals which are very important for the wholesome growth of the body.  
  3. The secret ingredient in flavor- Take two vessels, one iron kadai, and one clay handi. Cook similar curry in both following the same steps. Do you know which one will taste better? Of course, the Handi one. That is the secret ingredient. When we cook our food in earthen things, it adds the taste of nature and authenticity. Also due to maintained temperature and slow cooking properties, it allows the heat to circulate all over the food. The aroma generated in earthen cooking is unbeatable and nutritional as well. 
  4. Low oil usage– When cooking in earthen handi, you don’t need to put all those extra oils and fats. It retains the heat and moisture thus making your food ready in a slow-cooking way, that too without any extra oils and fats. 
  5. Retains heat/cold for a longer time-  Earthen vessels are porous in nature, meaning they have numerous small holes in it’s surface which circulates the heat and moisture evenly throughout the pot, maintaining the temperature. Due to this quality, hot remains hot and cold remains cold for a long time. 
  6. Environment friendly– Clay is natural and environment-friendly. It is free from toxins, colorings and other additions. When using earthen pots, we don’t have to worry about metal leachings and their harmful fumes. It keeps our environment safe without polluting in any way. When the earthen pots are broken, they can easily be discarded without polluting the environment.  

How to use Earthen pots:

Earthen pots are quite delicate and they need some tips to last long. Following are some of the ways through which you can keep your earthenware last long. 

  1. If you cook vegetarian food with no extra oil and fat, you can just use hot water to clean it. Also, put some salt baking soda or lemon peel to clean the surface. 
  2. Avoid using soaps or detergents to clean, as earthen things absorb the things.
  3. Also use jute or coconut husks instead of steel scrubbers. 
  4. Avoid cooking in high flames, keep the flame between low to medium.
  5. Get the clay vessel from a nice potter and also verify its quality. 
  6. First, you have to season it. Put the newly bought vessel into the water for 24 hours, then take out and sundry for the next 24 hours. Now your pot is ready to use. It will last long. 
  7. Instead of glazed ones, try to go for fine earthen ones.

Hope you got all your answers regarding earthenwares and their usage. Many people may say, for so long we have been using these metal ones? But still the question remains the same, if the metals are so good then why each and every one of us are suffering from so and so deficiencies? 

These earthenwares are also pocket-friendly and can be easily found anywhere around your local markets. It will give you a taste of culture and authenticity. You will also feel satisfied that now you are not using all such harmful things, that are nothing but an invitation to life-threatening diseases like cancers, kidney issues, liver problems, and many more. 

In the present era, health is scarce! Try to save it. Take care and live well! 

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