This summer like every subsequent summer, seems to be the hottest ever. With temperatures soaring to around 45 degrees Celsius, the heat wave is badly affecting the entire population. In lieu of these extreme temperatures, there are some measures that need to be taken to overcome certain common problems that we may face from a nutritional standpoint. Most notably, we need to protect ourselves from dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat strokes and in some cases, sun burns.
Here are some tips to help keep you protected from the scorching heat:
I think we are all aware of this one but do tend to forget about adequate water consumption because of work etc. Do not wait till your mouth goes dry, by that time your body has already reached a state of dehydration. Another way to check for normal water levels is via the urine colour. It must at all times be transparent to pale yellow in colour. The moment is starts getting darker, that’s another red flag for you.
Our body comprises of almost 70% water, never underestimate its role in your life!
Dehydration can lead to fatigue, heat exhaustion, mental fog, it may affect your blood pressure and can cause damage to your organs in extreme cases.
2. Cooling Drinks
Besides water, there are some ingredients that can really add flavour or just quench your thirst better than plain water. Consume refrigerated water but it must not be very cold. Lightly cooled water should suffice. Water that has been naturally cooled in a clay pot (ghada) would be the best. Having said that, we may only get refrigerated water most of the time so ensure it is not chilled, but cooled.
Some popular ingredients that may be added are powdered jeera (Jal Jeera) & lemon (Nimbu Paani). They may be used in combination as well. These two drinks will act as coolants. Moreover, they will help improve digestion and aid in weight loss as well. And the best part, both ingredients are in your kitchen right now!
One of my personal favorites and my own creation is the Iced Green Tea. Simple, instead of consuming the green tea warm, we leave it in the refrigerator to cool for a while, and add a dash of lemon while serving. You can look up both the recipes on my site.
And lastly, the good old coconut water! Loaded with electrolytes, not only will it quench your thirst, but it will help you replenish the lost electrolytes. Ideal for consumption post exercise.
3. Cooling Foods
Im sure the first item that comes to mind are fruits. Yes you guessed it right, but you would be surprised that some vegetable options also make the list. You may add the following to your grocery list this summer- cucumber for its watery content, mint leaves for its cooling effect on the stomach, tomatoes (which in case you were not aware, is actually a fruit) for their anti-oxidant properties, fruits such as watermelon and musk melons. Don’t worry about the high fructose content of the water melon because its glycaemic load is low.
You can throw all of these together in a bowl as well to make yourself a nice salad. And again, the focus is to use ingredients that are readily available in your kitchen, and guess what, we’ve managed to do so!
4. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera has strong therapeutic use. It may be consumed as well as used topically to treat burns. My tip here is to consume aloe vera in the raw form to facilitate better nutrient absorption. If faced with burns, it may be applied on the affected area to counter the effects of the burn. Moreover, it naturally helps us cleanse the liver and improve the quality of our skin.
Always remember, look for natural remedies to help improve your health, in this case, tackle the summer heat better. Nature has all the answers for us, we just need to be aware and not fall for mass psychology and marketing gimmicks.
Have a query about nutrition or just want to talk about your eating choices? Just drop it on my Whatsapp and i'll get back to you.