Beat the Heat: Best Foods to have this summer
With the mercury hovering warmly over the 45 degrees mark in many parts of India, are you wondering about the natural ways to beat the heat this summer? Well, here is a list of secret and traditional body cooling foods inspired by Ma’s and Grandma’s kitchen.
The list is based on ingredients that were found easily in our grandma’s kitchen when the more recent modes of cooling like the Air conditioners and cold aerated drinks were not available at our disposal. At that time, our elders used to depend on natural substances and home cooked recipes to manage their health. Also, the focus at that time was on strengthening the body from inside rather than just popping a pill and subsiding the symptoms. Of course, the traditional lifestyle had an array of its own benefits and needs to be visited and referred to in this age of quick fixes and immense health issues.
Body Cooling Foods:
- Gond Katira: It is also known as the “Tragacanth Gum”.It is a natural gum also known by other names like Shiraz Gum, Gum Dragon. It contains calcium, magnesium and some percentage of proteins too. There are many other benefits of Gond Katira but here we will focus on prevention from Heat Stroke and prevention of nose bleeds in summers. It is one of the best body colling foods available to us.
- Cold Milk - 3.5 glasses
- Gond Katira (soaked overnight in water) - 1.5 tble spns
- Roohafza syrup - 6 tble spns
- Take the Gond Katira, wash it with water and soak it in water at night. (Soak in a big container as it swells and becomes a lot in quantity)
- Next Morning, add roohafza/thandai to cold milk, add soaked gondkatira and crushed ice.
- Serve chilled.
You can also enrich roohafza based drink with vanilla with icecream, thandai based drink with traditional kulfi ice cream.
Where to find it: You may find “Gond Katira” at a local grocer however the easiest way is to amazon it.
2. Sabja Seeds, Tukmaria Seeds or Sweet Basil Seeds: I got introduced to these seeds about 2 years back at a friends place when she used some of these in a faluda drink. The sabja seeds are cooling in their nature and are used to get the body temperatures down in the scorching summer heat. Apart from their cooling nature they are also very good for one’s gut health and aiding blood sugar control. Sweet basil seeds are a source of iron, calcium, and magnesium too.
After soaking in water, one can use it in milk-based or water-based cooling drinks. Few ideas are to use it in your regular lemon water, roohafza/khus sherbets, also in sweetened coconut milk, sabja seeds with fresh cut mangoes/kiwi/lychee or fruit of your choice.
Where to find it: You may find “Sweet Basil seeds” at your local grocer however the easiest way is to Amazon it.
Bael Sharbat: Bael or wood apple fruit is abundantly available on our streets in India. It is one fruit that can be used to make jams, sherbets, etc and is rich in fiber, iron, phosphorus, protein and calcium content. The recipe to making the sherbet is easy, soak the fruit in some water and mash it after some time to get the pulp in the water. Discard the seeds and add sugar and lemon to the pulp water mixture and serve cold. A refreshing & body cooling drink is sure to do your body good.
Where to find it: At your local vegetable /fruit market.
Sattu powder also called as the Roasted chana flour is a great drink for summers. you can either enjoy it sweet by adding sugar and water to it or savory by adding the rock salt, roasted cumin and coriander leaves to it. Apart from its body cooling nature, it is also rich in proteins.
Where to find it: You may find “Sattu” at your local grocer however the easiest way is to Amazon it.
The fresh sugarcane juice is an elixir for the body which is trying to fight the heat wave. Apart from its anti-oxidant properties, it helps replenish the body fluids and does away the exhaustion and hence one of the good body cooling drinks to have this summer.
Where to find it: At the local markets
Additionally, Soaked Fenugreek Seeds, Coconut Water, Cucumber, Watermelon, Lemon water, and plain water are some other foods that have amazing cooling effects on our bodies. We should add these abundantly to our diets in summers.
You may also like to see this article on Summer cooler drinks by Supriya Gujar Mehta of www.littleduniya.com