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Cool food choices
Rita Date | Sunday, 19 March 2017 AT 07:34 PM IST
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We make a list of food items that will keep your body light and hydrated in the hot season.

The Holi festival marks the unofficial start to summer. The mercury has begun rising and it is time to pay attention to what we are putting in our bodies to remain cool. Dehydration and low energy are common in the season. Spicy foods, fried foods and heavy desserts should be avoided during this season.

Eating the right foods will help balance your diet and keep you energy levels stable. Here are 10 cooling foods you should be eating more of in summers.

Dahi is exceptionally good for you all year round, but in summer you can feel its goodness when you take a bite. Spice it up with mint and drink it as buttermilk. Have it with fruits as a snack or for breakfast, make a raita, or just eat it plain.

The expression ‘cool as a cucumber’ holds true. Cucumbers have plenty of water content which help keep you hydrated. They also have plenty of fibre and are low in calories which helps keep the body light in the

Our good old limbu paani is wonderful for the body all year round. However, in the summer, it has an incredible cooling effect. With its citrus properties, lime promotes detoxification. Adding lime to your water is good for your skin and immune system, and it also encourages you to drink more liquid overall.

Leafy greens
Is there anything leafy greens cannot do? Since greens have a high water content, they are easy to digest which puts less pressure on your body. Spinach, methi, lettuce, rajgira all are highly nutritious, and healing for your body. In the West, “green” smoothies made with spinach and some added fruit is very popular.

Find smoothie recipes online using spinach. Don’t fret if you don’t have all the ingredients — the most important ingredient is the spinach! More importantly, ensure that you include these vegies in your thali at least four-five time a week.

Both watermelon and musk melons are super fruits for the summer months. Melons should be the go-to snack during this season. Keep them cut in the fridge to eat anytime. Both are 90 per cent water, low in calories, and full of good nutrients.

Coconut water is refreshing and the drink you should consume, especially when you are on the road. However, the entire fruit is excellent to consume during the summer months.

When you eat coconuts, you get the benefits of not only the coconut water but also the nutrition from the fruit as well. Coconut meat is filled with electrolytes, which help keep you cool and hydrated. Home-made coconut chutneys should be on your thalis in the summer.

Summer would not be fun without ice-cream! The sugar and cream make it heavy on the stomach and its calorie content is high so it is not something you can eat everyday. However, it is the go-to dessert of the season. Try lighter sorbets, make fruit juice popsicles, and add some fruit to your ice cream for healthier options.

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