A Summer Diet for the Sunny Days
From the crisp winter chill to the warm summer breeze, seasonal changes are magical transformations. The comfort sought in a steaming cup of tea is replaced with refreshing and colourful thirst-quenchers and popsicles. We begin to reach for foods that will rescue and energise us from the prickling heat. When you itch for juicy foods during rising temperatures, know that it isn’t merely because of taste preferences but it might be your body’s way of requesting a switch in diet.
To maintain a cool and hydrated body during summer, we’ve curated a list of the following summer foods that you must include in your daily meals:-
As the heat intensifies, we feel an inherent need to balance the body’s metabolism and digestion. To do the same we can take the help of certain spices that are renowned for their powers to internally beat the heat. Hence, we recommend making these aromatic ingredients your kitchen cupboard staple:-
- Cardamom: The active compounds in cardamom detoxify the body, aid in digestion and fight nausea and heartburn which are common occurrences in summer.
- Fennel seeds: Drinking a glass of fennel water before stepping outdoors can keep the body cool and hence, prevent heat strokes. Fennel seeds also help maintain a healthy gut.
- Cumin: Cumin water has hydrating properties that refresh your body on a hot day.
- Coriander: Owing to its diaphoretic properties both coriander seeds and leaves can restore high body temperatures to normal.
- Ginger: Contrary to popular belief, consuming ginger during summer has a cooling effect. The essential oils present in ginger help reduce the body’s temperature.
As per Ayurveda, the right cereals for summer are ones that are high in kapha (coolness and moisture) and ones that balance your body’s pitta (heat). The grains that fulfil these criteria include:-
- Rice: Natural rice has several benefits to its name however, because it is high in water content, it is specifically good for the summer. Consider opting for healthier rice alternatives such as brown rice, or rice flakes, or enjoy warm idlis and crisp dosas made from rice batter during summer months.
- Barley: Renowned for its benefits in aiding digestion, barley is a summer cereal that is a great source of phosphorus, calcium, and iron.
- Amarnath: This is a gluten-free grain packed with plenty of fibre, protein and micronutrients. It helps with weight loss and can be added to a variety of dishes including smoothies, soups, breakfast cereals, and even pasta.
- Oats: As the health benefits of oats are popular world over, they are a promising summer meal that can be enhanced with summer berries for a refreshing start to the day.
Several health advisors celebrate pulses as they are loaded with vitamins and minerals and are a rich source of protein and fibre. Here are the pulses that are essential for the months of summer:-
- Moong: Aside from being high in minerals, moong is celebrated during the summer for its cooling properties. For a healthy lunch, you can make a salad out of sprouted moong.
- Black Chana: A traditional staple in places where the temperatures soar, black chana is highly nutritious and yet not too heavy on the stomach.
A cool hydrating drink is enough to paste a smile on your face when you are fatigued and sweaty during summer months. Here is a list of tempting thirst-quenchers that are the perfect summer requisite:-
- Aam Panna: This sweet and tangy summer drink is made with mango pulp blended with cumin, jeera, mint leaves, and jaggery.
- Lemonade: As the most sought-after summer drink, lemonade can be made quickly using mint leaves, lemons, sugar, salt and water. You can opt for our organic brown sugar for a healthier alternative.
- Sattu Sherbet: This drink originated in Bihar and is made from sattu powder (roasted black chana) and is a great source of energy during the summer months. Aside from cooling your body from within, it aids in weight loss as it keeps you full for long.
When you are unsure of what to eat, reach out for seasonal foods. Nature automatically provides us with hydrating foods in hot places indicating what will be healthiest for us to consume. Make the most of the sunny days with a refreshing diet, summer-ready body, and a sunshine smile!
Written by Siddhi Latey (Weloquent)