As the summer season approaches, the mercury levels rise, and the scorching sun makes us hunt for soothing foods which can comfort us in the heat. It’s a natural trend to opt for low calorie foods and interests shift from the high calorie diet of the winter.

Abhilasha Bagaria, Clinical Nutritionist, SKULPT, says “Different ingredients act differently on our metabolic system. All foods are divided into 2 categories i.e. foods that generate heat in the body and others which have a cooling effect on the body. On the other hand, foods that are high in water content help in hydrating the body and keep you cool from within. Also, alkaline foods and beverages are more hydrating than as compared to others. They are high in water content, low in calorie and aim at balancing the acidity and pH levels of the bodily fluids.”

Below are enlisted the foods we should consume and avoid for staying healthy this summer:

Body cooling foods:

Fruits: Mango, papaya, pear, berries, apricots, grapes, plums, melons (watermelon and musk-melon), tomato, kiwi, pineapple, avocado, tender coconut

Vegetables: Zucchini, pumpkin, all kinds of gourds, mint leaves, onion, lime, cucumber, mushroom, sweet corn, green leafy vegetables, eggplant, basil leaves

Others: Yoghurt, coconut water, fennel seeds, basil seeds, barley.

Foods to avoid:

  • Caffeinated, Carbonated and Alcoholic beverages
  • Drinks high in sugar content like readymade iced teas
  • Dry fruits
  • Very hot and spicy foods
  • Foods high in salt content and Fried foods
  • Heavy salad dressings and extremely cold foods and drinks

Healthy drinks which help replenish bodily fluids:

  • Fruit and vegetable juices (no added sugar or salt)
  • Aam Panna
  • Lemonades
  • Buttermilk
  • Sattoo water
  • Jaljeera
  • Wood apple water (bale water)
  • Cold green tea
  • Barley, Fennel and Fenugreek water

Since, the mango season has started in full swing, Abhilasha tells us how to go about this high-calorie ‘king of fruits’. Mango is one of the richest tropical fruits and is abundantly found during the summers. Many of us shy from consuming mangoes because of the high calorie content. But in the process, we miss out on the various vitamins, minerals and antioxidants present in mangoes.

The best way to consume mango is to soak it for several hours in water, for it to cool down from inside out. This way it will not produce heat in the body which leads to acne and digestive discomfort. Also, since the fruit is high in calories, one should try to consume it during the first half of the day, so that one has plenty of time to work off the calories by performing our daily activities.

Low calories mango dishes which can be consumed include: Mango Salsa, Mango and Greek Yoghurt Smoothie, Mango Coconut and Chia Seed Pudding.