Summer is finally here and time for children to make merry, play, enjoy and eat all they can. However, the season can be uncomfortable for people and especially for children. The Indian summers can be brutal and punishing forcing people to run toward refrigerator once in a while and washing their thirst down with glasses of artificial juices and cold water, both of which are bad for health. Although the temperature outside cannot be controlled, you can certainly what your children eat in the weather.
Here’s a list of top fruits, vegetables, and juices that will keep your children cool.
Musk melon and watermelons
Who doesn’t like biting into cool and juicy watermelons and healthy musk melons? Both the fruits are available round the year and known for their excellent body cooling properties. Unlike musk melons, watermelons are 92% water and hence are loved by everyone because they are good for keeping the body hydrated. Sliced or juiced, they both would still taste great.
Just like melons, tomatoes are known to keep the body cool. You can chop and add them to a mixed salad or slice them. You can even juice them. Tomatoes are nutritionally dense and are loved by people of all ages. Fun fact: Tomatoes are fruit and not vegetables. There’s a popular quote on tomatoes: “Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.”
Cucumbers are fresh and sweet and a great source to keep the body hydrated. Although not very nutritionally dense, cucumbers, like watermelons, are good to keep the body hydrated as they are more than 95% water. There are several benefits of cucumbers: hydrates and detoxifies the body and promotes weight loss, soothes and refreshes the skin, and reduces dark circles.
- Curd, buttermilk, and lassi
Nothing goes better than a cup of fresh curd on a hot day. Eat it with roti or rice or just as a side dish, the curd will always keep your body cool. As good as curd, if not better is buttermilk, often considered as the country’s original cold drink. Drink it all day and you will feel as fresh and hydrated as it can get. If you are in the mood for something thicker, then go for lassi. Add flavors of your choice like rose syrup, mango pulp, banana puree or other flavors or drink plain, lassi must be your drink of choice on a hot summer day.
Made with almonds, poppy seeds, cardamom, and other ingredients, thandai is a wonderful body cooling drink that should be had with chilled milk. Go buy a bottle of thandai at your neighborhood provision store.
- Coconut water
Coconut water is like an elixir for people. The water is nutritionally dense and rich in potassium and electrolytes. Buy the fresh ones and drink immediately. Don’t buy bottled or packaged water available in stores as they are preserved. Drink two or three per day to keep your body hydrated and nutritious.
- Lemon juice
No one says no to a glass of fresh lemon juice. Give your children a glass of freshly made lemon juice when they come back home after a long day’s play or visit relatives/friend’s homes. Squeeze in fresh lemons in a glass of cold water, add in some jaljeera to make it tasty or just go plain with water, sugar, and salt. Vitamin C in the lemon helps build their immunity, cleanses the body from within, and helps with digestion.
Another vegetable you should give your children are carrots. Eat them raw or boil them or just add them to your vegetable pulao, carrots are a nutrition powerhouse, rich in beta-carotene, and very helpful for the eyes. Carrots are also a rich source of Vitamin B6, magnesium, folic acid, and antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body. Carrots are a wonderful addition to your salad bowl on a hot summer day lunch.