There's nothing better than getting home after a long day, throwing on your baggiest pair of sweatpants, and ordering takeout. Sure, the convenience and comfort of Pizza Hut and Panda Express are undeniable. However, neither cheesy-filled crust nor sesame chicken are very good for you.

My #1 takeout favorite is Indian Food— it fills me up with warm, nourishing, and wholesome ingredients. But what makes indian food so healthy?

1. Indian Spices

cereal, pepper, herb, cumin
Sarina Raman

Ginger, used in many Indian dishes, helps cure an upset stomach, combats pain and heart disease, and boosts your immune system.

Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory agent and antidepressant. It adds the vibrant, yellow-orange color you see in indian dishes.

Cardamom not only fights bad breath, but also improves skin complexion. 

Cinnamon helps fight bacteria in your body, is rich in antioxidants, and speeds up your metabolism.

Need I say more?

2. Benefits of a Vegetarian Diet 

split peas, legume, parsley, vegetable, soup
Rachael Piorko

Vegetarianism has been an essential part of indian culture and cuisine from the get-go. Foods like beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, and soy replace chicken or beef. While indian restaraunts still serve meat, there is no shortage of options for vegetarians.

A diet sans meat has been proven to lower cholesterol, and reduce the risk of stroke, obesity, and heart disease.

3. Protein 

chicken, bread, falafel, meat, vegetable
Mira Nguyen

These legumes (beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, etc.) are packed with protein. A serving of green beans, for example, is eight grams of protein (and is loaded with fiber). A serving of tofu comes out at about 10 grams. A typical indian dish has over 15 grams of protein, while pizza has less than 12.

4. Added Fiber 

onion, pork, chicken, meat, pepper, vegetable, rice
Vinita Saggurti

What's so great about fiber anyway? Well, fiber makes you poop and pooping is key to a healthy-functioning body. Indian dishes are very vegetable-heavy and most desserts (the most popular being kheer) are garnished with fresh and dry fruits. 

What's more, indian breads typically use whole wheat flour over white flour, which contain added fibers.

5. Spiciness

herb, cilantro, turmeric, curry, cinnamon, condiment, chili powder, cumin, pepper, relish, chili
Sarina Raman

Spicy foods are proven to boost your metabolism while simultaneously burning fat. While too much chili powder can make you break out in sweats, a little bit has its benefits. It adds a good kick to your meal without any added sugar or salt. 

The next time you think 'takeout,' you're opening yourself up to a world of possibilites.

Not only can generic takeout like pizza and chinese be unhealthy, but it's also not very adventurous. We currently live in a flourishing food culture; It's time to take advantage of the accessible foods and resources in your area.