Lincoln Indian restaurants switch to healthier curry

The Passage to India was the first Lincoln restaurant to join the project

Six Lincoln Indian restaurants are taking part in an initiative to reformulate their menu so that their dishes have fewer calories, salt and saturated fat.

The health by stealth pilot began in June 2011, when only one Lincoln Indian was on the scheme, and now expands to six outlets in Lincoln and over 20 county-wide.

A local chef is working with the restaurants to make changes to their menu by offering an alternative healthier option to customers, without compromising on taste.

Some dishes have reduced their fat content by over half, and it is hoped curry lovers won’t be able to tell the difference in taste.

The food outlets are now in the second stage of the project, reformulating their menu and establishing discounts for customers on the healthier food choice.

Along The Passage to India on 435 High Street, who was part of the pilot, the six other Lincoln Indian restaurants to have joined the initiative are:

The Raj in the Birchwood Shopping Centre, Royal Tandoori on 118 High Street, Mowgli Indian Takeaway on 115D High Street, Burton Spice on 113 Burton Road, Moe Indian Restaurant & Takeaway on 445/446 High Street, and Castlegate Indian Restaurant on 11 Union Road.

The healthy Indian meals project is facilitated by NHS Lincolnshire, Trading Standards East Midlands & Lincolnshire, Social Change UK and Cook Connect.

Kelly Evans from Lincoln-based Social Change UK explained: “A Lincolnshire based chef will be working with over 20 Indian restaurants and takeaways in Lincolnshire to introduce healthier options.

“We are also hoping to ‘nudge’ customers towards choosing healthier dishes on restaurant menus by introducing special discounts such as 2 for 1 vouchers on healthier dishes.”

Joanne Hart from NHS Lincolnshire added: “Most people already know that takeaway food can be unhealthy and we need to look at ways we can make it easier for people to eat more healthily but still enjoy takeaway food.

“This project really is innovative because we are trying to change the behaviour of those who supply the food, rather than directly targeting consumers to ask them to cut down or cut out.”

Photo by Samantha Fisher for The Lincolnite