“Pure” vegetarians in India – as some units of my family are – do not use onion and garlic in their food. The rationale? According to Ayurveda, onions and garlic are classed with rajasik and tamasik food like meat and intoxicants. Rajasik food is considered passion-inducing and tamasik food sin-inducing – both are never offered to the Gods.
Ayurveda recommends sticking to the satvik variety of food – fruits and vegetables, nuts, whole grains. Satvik food is said to keep you fitter in body and calmer in mind.
How does a no-onion-no-garlic person eat Indian-style chhole (white chickpeas), then, you might ask. The popular Punjabi preparation needs an onion-based gravy of course, but there are other ways of preparing chhole without onion and garlic.