5 benefits of ghee in winters and best ways to add it to your diet
In Ayurvedic medicine, ghee is considered to be warming and grounding, making it beneficial in cold weather. Here are ways to add it to your food.
Winters are incomplete without ghee. The aroma and flavour of this desi superfood can enhance the taste of almost any winter delicacy. This healthy fat and immunity-booster is even recommended by Ayurveda in your winter diet considering it is warming and grounding. The ancient holistic healing system also considers ghee a 'samskaraanuvartana', which means it not only retains its own goodness but also health benefits of whatever it is cooked with. Ghee has benefits for skin, memory, strength and immunity. It also helps to detox the system and improves gut health. It also treats cough and cold in winters. (Also read: Is ghee for everyone? Ayurveda expert on who should avoid it)
"Winter is almost here and the preparations for the cold season have started. We're getting ready for the cold weather by putting on our warmest clothes and preparing our homes for the upcoming months. Our ancestors included ghee in their diets especially in winters as it helps to keep our winter woes away. In Ayurvedic medicine, ghee is considered to be warming and grounding, making it beneficial in cold weather," says nutritionist Nupuur Patil, Founder of Nupuur Patil Fitness.
BENEFITS OF GHEE
Patil also lists some wonderful benefits of ghee in cold weather and also ways to add the desi superfood to the diet.
1. Keeps you warm: Ghee is known for its ability to keep you warm in winters. The high smoke point of ghee makes it ideal for cooking in cold weather. It also has a neutral taste that allows the flavours of your food to shine through. You can put a teaspoon of it on rotis or use it in your sabzis.
2. Improves gut health and digestion: Evidence strongly suggests that the nutritional value of ghee includes gastric juices that help facilitate digestion. Gastric juices contain enzymes that help break down food into simpler compounds. So, adding a teaspoon of ghee to your roti will not only soften it but also ease your bowel movement.
3. Treats cold and cough: Ayurveda believes that ghee has both anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, which makes it effective in treating coughs and colds. Putting a few warm droplets of pure cow ghee in the nostrils can provide instant relief.
4. Moisturises your skin from inside: Not only is ghee a great natural moisturiser when applied externally, but it also works to moisturise your skin membranes from the inside out. Ghee is made of essential fats that help to keep your skin supple and soft. It also moisturises dry scalp and hair.
HOW TO ADD GHEE TO YOUR DIET
Ghee is a wonderful addition to your diet in any season but in winters it's extra beneficial. Here are some ways to add it to your diet.
- On chapatis: Brushing your roti with ghee is a good starter but be cautious of the amount.
- Swap refined oil with ghee to cook vegetables. Cooking your vegetables in ghee might be another healthy measure to try. Ghee has a high heat point, making it good for absorbing fat-soluble nutrients found in vegetables. Stir fry veggies in ghee for a delicious and healthy side dish.
- Use ghee as a healthier alternative to butter in baking recipes. You can use it to make homemade popcorn for a special treat. Drizzle ghee over oatmeal or pancakes for added flavour and nutrition.
- You can grind raw turmeric and one teaspoon ghee and make a morning drink. You can also add ghee to your morning coffee or tea. You can also spread it on your morning toast or oatmeal.
- Stir a spoonful of ghee into soup or dal just before serving. You can also add it to cooked rice, quinoa, or other grains for extra flavour and nutrition.
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