Summer’s almost coming to an end and grandmother is slicing up the last few mangoes for the season. With every juicy bite you take, you wish the mangoes lasted all year. Then again, what’s the joy of a mango if you didn’t wait all year for it?
Ever wondered why certain fruits and vegetables are only available in particular seasons? Nature is deliberately designed that way. This design has an impact on us in ways we do not fully comprehend yet. Afterall, we all belong to mother nature
The term ‘seasonal eating’ itself is new and ironic, considering that fact that humans, like all creatures, have eaten according to seasons since time immemorial. Though, while our ancestors ate healthy diets that were seasonally and regionally available, we have sadly moved on to preserved and inorganic food.
As we move farther away from natural habitats to cities woven in construction and concrete, we are losing out on the ways of nature. We are increasingly consuming a repetitive, dull diet. It is important to understand how and to what extent seasons affect our body and eating patterns.
So here is a guide on what to eat when.
Alright, have all the ice cream you want, but save some room for salads! Alongside our favourite summertime munchies, maintaining a healthy summer diet is essential. Our body requires lighter and cooler food during the hot season, so it is healthy to cut down on grains, meat and dairy products and shift to food that is fresh and raw.
Summers give us a great opportunity to incorporate all sorts of hydrating fruits and vegetables into our diet. Fruits like berries, summer squash and melons along with greens like lettuce, gourds and cucumbers are great to keep our bodies hydrated. Besides, our appetite largely depends on our mood and hot days are best for gluten-free breakfasts and noon-time refreshments.
Every season has something valuable to offer to our nutrient intake. Spring is the best time to go for an entirely organic diet. The season is all about change and newness, and this includes our body as well. So, go for a detox diet and cleanse your body of all toxins.
Lots and lots of leafy greens, roots, herbs and sprouts should do the trick. The minerals and vitamins from these vegetables will prepare our body for the rest of the year. It is also advisable to cut down on your intake of carbs and fat during these months.
Monsoon diets must be rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. We all hate the feeling of lying sick in bed when outside the window, beautiful rain clouds gather in the sky. Monsoon is when we are most prone to catching the flu, cough and other infections. So it’s best to work on our immune system and enjoy these rainy months.
While summers are for raw and fresh food, meals during monsoon must be cooked well. Build up on proteins with rice, seeds and whole grains, along with immunity-building citrus fruits like amla and oranges. Food is generally deep fried during this time. So go ahead and enjoy ma’s pakoras too!
Ever wondered why cold days make you so hungry? You want that chocolate pudding, and those chicken wings, and then a whole pizza. But hey, it is natural that our appetite increases during winters. This is because our body requires fat as it constantly loses heat.
So it is time to indulge in all your carb cravings. A high-protein and high-fat diet with wheat breads, dairy and meat is best for the long winter ahead. Food is usually baked and sauteed during this time. As for veggies, go for starchy ones like beans and lentils. Oh, and pumpkin soup. Lots of it!
The more we align to nature’s timetable, the healthier we stay. Besides, seasonal diets are not only healthy for our body, but also highly sustainable for the environment. Having food that is locally and seasonally available cuts down on the transportation and packaging of food items. So what more, when we can care for ourselves and our planet in one go!