It’s summer—that amazing time of year when fresh produce abounds. We need to relish the fresh produce as summer brings in lots of nutrient rich, healthy choices.
But, what about the scorching heat and associated dehydration, perspiration, rashes, itchiness, tiredness which we experience in summer. Well, of course drink more water!!! Everyone knows that, also, add some lemon juice and watermelons to keep you hydrated. Have you ever tried any other natural coolant? Let me remind you of these food products our grandma used every summer to keep the heat at bay.
- Kokam: Kokam juice is a very refreshing drink with cooling effect on the body. It not only quenches the thirst, but also prevents dehydration and sunstroke due to summer heat. Kokam has other health benefits like, garcinol present in kokam is an excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory hence inhabits cancer cell growth. Also, hydroxyl acetic acid helps reducing the conversion of carbohydrates to fats, so it prevents fat deposition.
- Dried black currents: Dried currants are also an excellent source of nutrients that are essential for health, including dietary fiber, copper, manganese and potassium. Potassium allows electrochemical balance that allows muscle contraction and nerve cell impulse transmission to occur properly. Because of water loss potassium becomes important.
- Fennel seeds: Fennel is an aromatic and flavorful herb that has several culinary as well as medicinal uses. In addition to its popular use as a breath freshener, it helps relieve a number of ailments and facilitates better health due to its anti inflammatory, antimicrobial,expectorant, diuretic, anticarcinogenicand antioxidatIt contains vitamin C, potassium, manganese, iron, folate, and fiber. It is also rich in phytonutrients and has a high concentration of volatile oils. It cools the body off by increasing perspiration and maintaining body temperature.
- Rock sugar candy or Mishri or khadishaker (in Hindi): Mishri or Rock Sugar is crystallized sugar, sweet candy is packed with numerous health benefits. Mishri is widely used as a refreshing drink during summers, Fennel seed powder with ground mishri makes a refreshing drink to fight harsh summer heat. It exerts a soothing effect on the mind and body and relaxes you from stress.
- Sattu or barley water: Sattu has extremely good properties for your health. It is extracted from barely, wheat or gram. Mix sattu, little lemon juice drops, salt and roasted cumin powder to get a very healthy drink.
Consuming foods that are not in season may come with a risk of chemicals and preservatives that are applied to fruits and veggies to keep them fresh. With these food one can also use:
- Curds or buttermilk.
- Raw mango
- Coconut water
- Bottle gourd
- Salad leaves, especially mint leaves.
With all these food always go for light diet which can be easily digested by our body without much effort. Oily and junk food should be avoided.Avoid too much of tea and coffee as it contains caffeine which results in dehydration.
Restrict tea and coffee to two cups a day. You can switch to green tea as it contains antioxidants which are great help to body during summer seasons.Do not eat spicy, hot and extremely salty food as they are hard to digest and will have ill effects on the skin.
So keep cool and Have a happy summer!!