In summer, your health can take a serious beating if you don’t give it the necessary nutrients to tackle the heat. Here’s what you need.
Water: Our bodies are 2/3rds water and it’s an important component of food. Think of it as not just a fluid but also a source of essential minerals.
Barley: This is one of the more effective cooling foods. It is rich in minerals like copper, selenium, manganese and phosphorus. It is very good for treating kidney ailments, gastritis and ulcers. Barley-based beverages are very popular in summers.
Coconut water: It is rich in calcium, potassium and magnesium. Coconut water is very cooling for the body and also provides essential electrolytes that prevent you from getting dehytrated. It is beneficial for people with urinary tract infections and good for those who suffer from hypothyroidism and water retention.
Brown rice: The process that produces brown rice removes the outermost layer – the hull – of the rice kernel and is least damaging to its nutritional value. The complete milling and polishing that converts brown rice into white rice destroys 67 per cent of vitamin B3, 80 per cent of vitamin B1, 90 per cent of vitamin B6, half of the manganese content, half the phosphorus content, 60 per cent of the iron content, and all of the dietary fibre and essential fatty acids. Brown rice is very cooling and is recommended for almost all digestive problems. Brown rice khichdi is a must in summer to tackle heat-related ailments.
Bottle gourd/lauki: It is excellent for treating liver ailments, intestinal problems and heat-related problems. The vegetable comprises 96 per cent water and minerals. Lauki juice mixed with tomato and beetroot is an ideal drink for those battling weight issues. However, never consume bitter lauki as it can be toxic.
Melons: They are extremely rich in water and minerals. Melon juice is beneficial for those with liver disorders, stomach problems, fatigue and diseases connected to the nervous system.
Cucumber: They provide a variety of phytonutrients like flavonoids, lignans and triterpenes.Cucumbers are an excellent source of the anti-inflammatory vitamin K and a good source of the enzyme cofactor molybdenum.
They are also a good source of free radical-scavenging vitamin C, heart-healthy potassium and magnesium, bone-building manganese and energy-producing vitamin B5. Cucumber is rich in water, which is important in summer as it hydrates the body. It’s delicious too.
From HT Brunch, May 13
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