Why Indians Do Not Consume Food During An Eclipse

By: Chandana Rao

If you are an Indian, regardless of the kind of a societal background you come from, you would surely be able to vouch for the fact that India is a land of hundreds of traditions and beliefs, right?

As it is rightly termed, the "subcontinent", India is a country which houses a whole array of different cultural backgrounds, religions, castes and sub-castes, so one can imagine how many traditions are born out of all these different cultural backgrounds.

Every state is culturally different from the other and has its own set of traditions that are still being followed to this day.

solar eclipse facts

For example, most states celebrate the beginning of the new year differently and even at different times of the year.

While the new year is celebrated as 'Ugadi' in Karnataka, it is called 'Pongal' in Tamil Nadu, and the rituals involved in the celebrations can be very different.

Now, with traditions come a number of beliefs too and while some beliefs have a solid basis that pertain to the health and well-being of a person, the others may simply be meaningless.

For example, many families in India still believe that only women who give birth to male children can attain a place in heaven; this belief has no basis and could be a pure myth.

Other beliefs such as a woman having to wash her hair on the third day for her period, could have some scientific evidence. A woman's body produces a lot of sweat and oil during the menstrual cycle, so a hair-wash nearing the end of the cycle could be a hygienic practice!

Now, even when it comes to certain natural phenomenon such as the full moon, eclipse, etc., people in India have certain beliefs.

Many people here say that one must not consume any food or go out, during a solar eclipse.

Let us now find out some of the reasons why many Indians do not consume food during an eclipse.

solar eclipse facts

Reason #1: Radiations May Cause Health-hazards
As we know, a solar eclipse occurs when the moon comes in between the sun and the earth, partially obscuring the sun from the earth, until it lasts. Astronomers and scientists alike, believe that during an eclipse, certain radiations reach the earth through the atmosphere, and these radiations may lead to the health-hazardous bacteria in the food to multiply faster.

So, this could be one reason why Indians do not consume food when there is an active eclipse.

solar eclipse facts

Reason #2 Can Cause Indigestion
Yet another reason why many Indians do not consume food until an eclipse is over is because of the fact that the radiations which fall on the earth during the eclipse can interfere with a healthy digestion.

A number of research studies have been conducted on this subject and scientists claim that consuming food during an eclipse could cause indigestion.

There have also been a few studies in which experts claim that foods which have been exposed to direct radiations from the eclipse could also be potentially toxic!

So, there are some of the reasons why a lot of Indians do not consume food during an eclipse.

Read more about: eclipse, food, radiation
Story first published: Sunday, August 20, 2017, 15:30 [IST]
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