Eat light and right! This season, consume vegetables, fruits and cereals which are light and highly nutritious. Bitter and astringent vegetables and cooling foods like corn chickpeas, green gram, gram flour, oats, barley and brown rice are considered best to combat the season’s health grievances.
The reason being, heavy foods like meat generate heat in the body which is undesirable in this weather. Though light in consumption you need to also steer away from eating fish, as it is their mating season, hence consuming fish now can lead to severe allergies.
Oil spoils Heavy oils like mustard, peanut and sesame oil need to be shunned this season. “Instead, use corn or olive oil to cook food as they are light and easier to digest” says Dr Ujwala, a nutritionist at Nutralite. “Avoid fried food as much as possible as your digestive tract will find it hard to digest oil-based foods. Instead, opt for grilled corn or tandoori veggies with very less oil, so that your stomach is light yet satisfied,” suggests Dr Ujwala.
Steamed salads over cold salads Avoid cold salads as they contain traces of pesticides along with worms that thrive especially in this season. To play safe, opt for a steamed salad as it will get rid of all the harmful micro-organisms.
Check your salt consumption Avoid high intake of salt because digestion is at its lowest in this weather, as the humidity levels in the atmosphere are high. “This leads to water retention and bloating which are two crucial enemies for women all over,” explains Dr Ujwala,
Soup siesta Soups are great mood stimulators that tackle the dreariness of the weather. Spinach, green gram or even lentil soup with a dash of cinnamon or cloves acts as a buffer against unwarranted cold, fever and body aches. Add vitamin C rich foods like tomato and lemon juice while cooking green leafy vegetables to improve iron and calcium absorption of your body.
A dash of bitterness Consume a lot of bitter vegetables like bitter gourd, basil leaves, fenugreek seeds and grandmother’s all-time favourite germ-killer- turmeric, which you can incorporate in nearly all Indian recipes. These prevent infection during the monsoons and also boost your immune system against harmful diseases. In addition, include ginger and onion in your recipes as much as possible as they have properties that can fight diseases effectively.
Occasionally, there’s nothing wrong in sipping on a hot cup of masala chai with an overdose of ginger and homemade onion pakoras! If you are cravings for pani puris, choose a restaurant that prepares them with mineral water and high hygiene standards. Just make sure you don’t overdo it!