Summer has arrived and everyone wants to enjoy this wonderful time of year. You can go swimming, trekking, camping, play around the beach and enjoy a night outside grilling some of your favorite foods.
To be sure you can enjoy all the warm sunny days of summer, you’ll want to keep yourself free from common summer health problems, such as sun damage, dehydration, heat stroke and digestive problems. By making smart dietary choices, you can ward off these and other health issues.
The summer growing season produces an abundance of fresh, delicious and healthy fruits and vegetables in the market. These fresh and flavorful summer foods will keep your body cool from within and well nourished.
Here are the top 10 superfoods for summer.
Watermelon is a staple food for summer picnics. With about 92 percent of its weight coming from water, watermelon contributes to fluid intake to help keep the body well hydrated. By staying hydrated, you can keep your memory sharp and your mood stable.
Also, watermelon provides plenty of antioxidants including vitamins A and C and lycopene, which help reduce risk of complications from diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, high blood pressure, macular degeneration and arthritis.
To keep your body cool and well hydrated during the hot summer months, munch on fresh watermelon daily. The refreshing and sweet taste of watermelon is liked by all, including children.
Cucumbers are another ideal cooling summer food. They have high water content and help keep your body cool and refreshed.
The enzyme called erepsin found in cucumbers helps keep the intestinal tract healthy. This improves digestion and is especially helpful in summer, when people complain a lot about poor digestion.
Plus, cucumbers contain vitamin C that helps protect the skin from ultraviolet (UV) sun rays and prevents wrinkles, sun damage and more.
Enjoy a plate of cucumber salad as a cool and crunchy snack. You can even have cucumber soup or juice during the summer days.
3. Summer Squash
The nice flavor and creamy texture of summer squash go well with many summer meals. It is a great source of the antioxidant vitamins C and A. It also provides energy-boosting B-vitamins. Several components in summer squash also help keep insulin metabolism and blood sugar levels in balance.
In addition, summer squash provides vitamin K, choline, zinc, dietary fiber, phosphorus, potassium, folate, and magnesium, as well as omega-3 fatty acids.
Add fresh, raw summer squash to salads and wraps. You can also have baked, stuffed or sautéed summer squash dishes.
4. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is perfect in the summer for cooling the body and helping disperse body heat. Along with protein and calcium, Greek yogurt contains probiotics, the beneficial bacteria that keep your digestive system running smoothly as well as boost immunity and prevent yeast infections.
Greek yogurt can even help you slim down due to the unique protein and carbohydrate combination it offers.
You can eat a cup of Greek yogurt for a refreshing summer treat. You can also top it with fresh strawberries or raspberries for a tasty dessert.
Drinking buttermilk at the end of a long, hot day in the sun is a great way to combat dehydration and fatigue. Packed with electrolytes and lots of water, a glass of buttermilk can help rehydrate your body.
It also helps calm the stomach after a spicy meal and aids in digestion. Sweating, tiredness, muscle cramps, nausea and headaches can also be reduced significantly by adding buttermilk to your diet. Plus, buttermilk is a great food for healthy skin.
So this summer, avoid aerated drinks and start drinking one or two glasses of buttermilk daily.
Readily available throughout the summer season, mango’s soothing and cooling effect will keep you energized during the hot summer days. Plus, mangoes are rich in vitamins A, C and E that are essential to maintain good health.
You can eat both ripe and unripe mangoes to beat summer heat. Eat ripe mangoes as a fruit snack or add the pulp to milk or yogurt and blend it for a tasty smoothie.
You can boil unripe mangoes, extract the pulp, add it to a glass of cold water and sprinkle in some salt and roasted cumin powder. This drink is an excellent remedy for heat stroke and exhaustion that can occur in the summertime.