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Are Indians ditching biryani for healthy meals?

Swiggy’s Health Hub shows 20 per cent more Indians ate healthy in Jan 2021, a trend that is deemed to rise through the year.

While online Yoga, Zumba and Pilates kept people in India going through the pandemic induced lockdown and remote working lifestyle, there is another fitness habit, which has gained prominence. Swiggy’s recently launched Health Hub, shows that eating healthy meals is now in vogue in the country especially with new year resolutions.

Health Hub, a dedicated healthy food discovery section on the Swiggy app, offers over 90,000 healthy dishes. The dishes are curated and verified by certified nutritionists. The Health Hub service is currently live in Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Bangalore with plans to expand to ten other major cities through the year. Below are some key trends and findings from Swiggy Health Hub.

Healthy feat for the New Year: Between December 2020 and January 2021, healthy food orders saw a 20 per cent jump clearly indicating a resolve to start the year on a healthy note. Most consumers played it safe and stayed home on New Year’s Eve and continued to party as they welcomed 2021. While most binged-on biryani and pizza on New Year’s Eve, Swiggy witnessed a rise in healthy meals and even healthy desserts being ordered on the first day of 2021.

Dishes such as Millet Khichdi, Multigrain Masala Dosa, Mexican Burrito Bowl, Caesar Salad, Corn Sandwich, along with Belgian Bites and Sugarfree Ice Cream made for the maximum orders. Health-conscious Indians also ordered sugar free versions of Roasted Almond Ice Cream and the Muesli Yogurt Parfait.

Make way for high protein and Keto diet: Most health-conscious consumers in the four cities ate high protein meals and Keto emerged as the most popular diet. Swiggy has positioned the dish selection on Health Hub to suit the special requests for various discovery options such as High Protein, Low Fat, Low Calorie, Fibre Rich, and Keto dishes. The platform has also worked with nutritionists and restaurant partners to create healthy items across cuisines which generally aren't associated with healthy eating and are closer to Indian consumers' taste palette truly becoming a one-stop-shop for all those wanting to follow a healthy eating habit.

City with the healthiest orders: Bangalore was crowned as the city with the maximum orders for healthy food in the country. A look at city-wise preferences for health meals shows that Hyderabad ordered the most Barbeque Grilled Salads, Protein Guacamole Bowls and healthy breakfasts. Mumbaikars went for Burrito Bowls, Caesar Salads, Homestyle North Indian Khichdis and combos. And healthy eaters in NCR ordered healthy breakfast items such as Poha and Upma; Protein Salads and Bowls for other meals.

Timely and measured meals: Undeterred by the unreasonable demands of work from home, consumers have made it a point to eat healthy and timely meals with orders for lunch peaking at 1 pm and for dinner at 8 pm. The average calorie count per meal was higher for lunch orders at 360 calories with people ordering meals with 335 calories for dinner orders. Consumers also ate more healthy meals on Mondays and Thursdays to beat their work blues at the beginning and the middle of their work week.

Top 5 restaurants in cities where most of the healthy meals were ordered. (Data based on lakhs of orders received on Swiggy Health Hub.)

Are Indians ditching biryani for healthy meals?