16 July, 2019
With the onset of Monsoon, there are some typical foods that we Indians we reach out for. The variety of Pakodas, Samosas, other fried savories, etc. is common. With all this, Monsoon also brings with it, its share of diseases; apart from the viral fever, Chikungunya, Dengue (because of the rise in mosquitoes due to stagnant water puddles), you also find malaria, diarrhea, and food infections, cold and cough, etc. However, if one takes certain precautions, many of these Monsoon diseases can be avoided.
Apart from taking precautions to avoid mosquitoes and their bites, one should also pay special attention to diet during Monsoon. Immunity can go down otherwise, and with many contagious diseases in the air, you may find yourself ill. A good, healthy, and balanced diet can keep you healthy, and fit. Here are a few tips that you can follow this Monsoon.
Avoid outside food
To the extent possible, avoid taking food outside, especially from roadside vendors. Water, especially, should not be had from outside, and this also includes, all kinds of fresh fruit juices, etc. The water that these vendors may use can be contaminated, and you may end up falling sick. Besides, these vendors may keep the cut fruits exposed to the cold weather for long, and this too is harmful.
Even at home, you should avoid cutting fruits and keeping it aside for long. Consume fresh, after washing the fruits thoroughly, if required, with a little, lukewarm water.
Typically, people, especially the seniors, are told to include leafy greens in their diet, as it is highly helpful for their immunity and strength. However, only for the few months when the Monsoon is highly active, it is best to avoid these, as the dampness in them is more susceptible to all kinds of germs. However much you may wash them, some of it will be left behind and, these can make you fall ill, on consumption. So, it is better to avoid spinach, cauliflower, cabbage, amaranth, etc.
Include more vegetables like bitter gourd, bottle gourd, ridge gourd, or apple gourd. All these gourds are highly nutritious and good for health, and in the Monsoon, they are seasonal too and can keep you healthy. Care should be taken, though, to wash them thoroughly and cook them as well. It is best to avoid eating raw salads in the Monsoon.
As mentioned above, the tendency in Monsoon is to reach out for the fried foods like the Pakoda and Samosa. But, sadly, you should not; they are not good for you, anyway; and especially so during the Monsoon! Fried foods take a lot of time to digest, and in the Monsoon, more so. Also, they can cause more intestinal discomfort like gas, bloating, pain, cramps, etc. Hence, it is best to resist the temptation to make and eat pakodas, except maybe as a little treat just once or twice during the Monsoon.
Seafood is also available in plenty during the Monsoon, and typically, many of the Omega 3 fatty acids, that are good for health. However, during Monsoon, it is best to avoid the seafood as well, as it is the breeding season, and eating seafood can cause you discomfort. It can even make you ill, as the fish, especially with the eggs in them, are not suitable for health.
Also, the fish may have been around in muddy and sewage water during Monsoon, and this can cause it to be harmful to you. If at all, you are eating, you need to make sure that it is fresh and not frozen stuff. Also, please note that in many parts of the country, trawling is banned during this time. This is done to protect the fishermen from coming to harm by going out into the rough sea caused by the Monsoon. Besides, the other reason is also to protect the breeding of fishes that happen during this time. Also, with less fresh available, there will be fewer people eating it and falling sick as well.
Apart from the above, you should also make sure to drink only filtered or boiled water as may be the case. Also, you can have warm or hot foods like soups, broths, etc. Stay hydrated, even if you do not feel thirsty like you do in the Summer. Include Citrus fruits that help you fight infections like Orange and Gooseberry. Include spices like ginger, turmeric, pepper, cumin, etc. in cooking, and use some anti-toxins like Tulsi while making tea.
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