We usually use unhealthy methods to keep cool in summer. We blast our air conditioners, guzzle on ice-creams, drink lots of iced tea, cold coffee, sodas and the like. But do these really help cool us down?
The body can cool down only when it is given the time and energy to do so. Consuming ice creams and sugar laden drinks further depletes energy. Our bodies require more energy to digest these acidic drinks. In addition, they pump up our body heat, instead of cooling it.
So, what should we actually do? Here are a few simple tricks.
Bathe and Swim:
We should have showers, swim if we can and bathe frequently. Water is most relaxing and acts as an air conditioner on our body and skin. Also use a cold, wet towel on your neck, abdomen and feet to quickly drop internal temperatures. Add a few drops of lemongrass, sandalwood, lavender or your favourite oil to the water you soak your towel in.
Take some good quality rose water. Put it in the fridge and chill it. Take some eye pads and soak them in the rose water to make a compress. Close your eyes and apply the compress for five minutes and breathe deeply. It will deactivate you and calm and cool your body.
The quickest way to generate energy is through fruit. Nature provides us with the choicest fruits in the summer. Since fruits are pre-digested, they do not trigger the secretion of acid in the gut and therefore provide body energy without heating up.
Enjoy Cantaloupe and Mango smoothies, Watermelon and Mango salads and later in the season, Peaches, Apricots and Plums. The range of options is extraordinary.
All the watery Gourds (Tori, Tinda, Lauki) are created by Nature to keep us cool. The body loses many minerals in the process of sweating. This loss of minerals is quickly and efficiently made up by these watery vegetables. Juiced, they can be a great thirst quencher and nourisher. Add lemons to it and you are truly set for great health.
Tulsi seeds or Sabza are great for cooling down the body. Add 1 tablespoon of soaked Sabza seeds (which have innumerable benefits) to your nimbu pani or your lemon shots and you will reap the rewards.
Hydration is most important for our bodies. Make sure you drink 35 ml. of water per kilo of body weight and more if you are out in the sun. You can add Lemon, Cucumber, Mint, Citrus fruits to your water and have infused water.
If you feel like ice cream, blend Melons, Watermelons and Mangoes and freeze it in your ice trays. If you feel low on energy, suck on these ice cubes. Perfect and healthy. Will do the trick.
Eat foods that are easy to digest in summer. Avoid heavy sauces, rich curries and processed foods. Have lots of fruits, salads, lightly cooked vegetables and legumes. Heavy meats are incredibly difficult to digest in the summer months. Eat as alkaline as possible and add more raw foods to your diet. Include good probiotics such as dahi, lassi, thin buttermilk and chaas. Mango panna and bael sherbet and sattu are good summer coolers.
Sleep helps our bodies repair and rejuvenate. So make sure you sleep well.
Hope all these simple tips really help all of you stay cool and well through the summer.
Remember, eat regional, seasonal, local and organic.