Winter is the season where fresh fruits are the sweetest and juiciest like lemons, oranges, kiwis, strawberries.
This is the season when the markets are brimming with all sorts of root vegetables, tubers and leafy greens that are robust with natural goodness. No wonder then that in India we eagerly wait for winters to make our favourite seasonal dishes such as a hot bowl of gajar ka halwa cooked with red carrots, sarsoon ka saag, mooli ke paranthe etc. Winter is all of this but did you also know that winter is the best season to improve health! During winters, people feel hungrier. Amazingly, the body engine works better in the winter and foods are better digested. This aids in providing more nourishment to the body.
In winters our body craves for foods which provide warmth along with nourishment. Including ‘winter special foods’ fulfil such cravings and also help balance serotonin, a brain calming chemical that prevents low blood sugar-induced hunger pangs. The cold weather can interrupt your workout routine and can even send you on a mood roller coaster that can lead to overeating due to stress and boredom.
Here’s the list of winter foods that will bring warmth and make your winter soothing.
• Include energy sources such as whole grains, cereals, pulses and millets, beans and peas in every meal.
• Eggs white, soup, should also be included in the diet for proteins. High energy and protein foods provide the required fuel to combat the cold.
• Mix cereal dal laddoos, makai ki roti, bajra ki roti provide you the required energy, proteins, calcium during this season.
• Potatoes, Sweet potatoes, Starchy fruits, and vegetables provide much-needed energy.
• Enjoy most famous and favourite delicacy gajar ka halwa! The beta carotene present in carrots is an excellent source of Vit A and powerful antioxidant.
• Leafy greens like methi, palak, sarso good source of Vit A and C, both help to fight diseases and build immunity during winters.
• White radish, onion, and garlic are rich in isothiocyanates, indoles, and other phytochemicals. Their strong flavour helps pep up the taste of foods.
• Spices are a valuable remedy for winter colds and coughs. They stimulate appetite, digestion and improve blood circulation. Mustard, Ajwain, Hing, pepper, Methi is very beneficial in bone and joint problems occurring in winter. Turmeric especially the golden yellow variety is a potent anti-bacterial immunity builder.
• Some herbs like basil, lemongrass, tulsi help protect against cold, fever, cough by increasing immunity.