Arjun Kapoor Shares His Emotional Battle With Obesity on ‘Star Vs. Food’
Arjun Kapoor with chef Gulaam Gouse Deewani. (Weber Shandwick photo)
By R.M. VIJAYAKAR Special to India-West
MUMBAI — Arjun Kapoor cooked up a storm in the kitchen on “Star vs Food.” After having personalities like Kareena Kapoor Khan and Karan Johar grace the show, Arjun Kapoor joined the star-studded line-up for the third episode of the celebrity cooking show on Discovery+.
Under the mentor-ship of Gulaam Gouse Deewani, head chef at The Butler & The Bayleaf, Kapoor entered the kitchen for the first time to try his hand at cooking the flavorful Laal Maas and Chapli Kabab to surprise his uncle and aunt, Sanjay and Maheep Kapoor. As the Kapoors enjoy royal Mughlai flavors and believe in the tradition of having more food on the table than people, the new chef decided to prepare dishes in which his folks would love to indulge.
Taking up cooking as a challenge, Kapoor said, “The trickiest thing about today’s cooking is the fact that I have to enjoy myself while still learning something new, and that’s not always easy.”
While showing off his cooking antics, Arjun Kapoor also revealed his weight transformation from P.H.A.T. (Pretty, hot and tempting) to fit over the years and recollected how his indulgence in food was uncontrollable as he weighed 150 kilos by the time he was 16.
Talking about his parents’ separation he said, “I looked at food for comfort. I got caught up in the way I felt emotionally… so I started eating and then I really enjoyed eating, and fast food culture came into India at that point of time and fast food is ‘fast food’, so you can go after school and keep eating.”
“It is very difficult to let go, because eventually, there is nobody to stop you beyond a point. Your mother loves you; she will reprimand you, but you are still a kid, and they give you benefit of the doubt ki yeh umar hai khaane ki, theek hai (this is the age to eat, it’s alright).”
With time, Kapoor developed asthma because of his obesity. Talking about the transformation phase, he said, “I literally, one Diwali, just ate biryani and had a tub of ice cream, and then I said Bas! Is Zindagi ke liye bohot kha liya, ab apni agli zindagi ke liye nahin khaunga! (I have eaten enough for one life, I will not eat for the next!). And that’s where the new phase of my life started, where I learnt how to let go.”
Reminiscing about his good old days, Kapoor mentioned how with the turntable or the ‘Lazy Suzy’ as the family called it, he was always the first one to hoard on the chicken legs especially when they were homemade. To which uncle Sanjay playfully added about his domestic help Leela hiding food from Kapoor to rescue his post-meal hunger pangs!