Food that Beats the Heat

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Summer’s kicking in, and with the sunshine and picnics come sweat, grime and a whole host of weather related diseases. As much as people wait for winter to end and summer to begin, very few are physically prepared for the toll these couple of months takes on you. Personally I prefer to warmth to the cold any day, but I still need to make sure my system is equipped to stay healthy and fight bacteria right through the season.

Some of the common issues people face in the summer are heat stroke, dizziness, dehydration and gastrointestinal problems like vomiting, diarrhea and food poisoning. Because of the heat, the body experiences excessive sweating which leads to loss of water from the body, but also a loss of electrolytes like sodium and potassium.

food-beats-heatTherefore it is vital to supplement your diet in the summer with liquids, fruits and vegetables that will replace the nutrients that your body is losing. My personal favorite drinks for the summer are coconut water, lime juice, lassi (deconstructed curd) and of course plain drinking water.

To eat vegetables like cucumber, tomato, Okra (lady’s finger), pumpkin are excellent for easy digestion during the summer. High in water content or light on the stomach, it’s important to choose fruits and vegetables that keep your system balanced.

While it might be hard to adapt your lifestyle to suit the seasons, the payoff is well worth it. Luckily for me, as I frequent the Akshaya Patra kitchen for my afternoon meals, my diet is well taken care off. At the Akshaya Patra headquarters in Bangalore we are beneficiaries of the mid-day meal programme, and I was delighted to find an array of healthy summer food like raita (Indian yogurt sauce) containing cucumber and carrot, pumpkin dishes, Okra laden with tomato, along with curd to wash it all down.

This very food is made available to children in government schools all across Bangalore, and I was thrilled to see that their summer diet already includes everything they need to take this beautiful season head on. With the mid-day meals feeding them right, it’s time for these children to do what children do best – Play.

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