Foods to Rebuff Winter Chills

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.”

Edith Sitwell

Winter is the mood roller coaster season. Itis the best time of the year to pep up the immune system of your body. It’s the time when local markets get flooded with healthy and colorful veggies and fruits, like crisp florets of cauliflower, rosy red tomatoes, plum brinjals, green spinach, carrots, pumpkin, papaya, apricots, etc.  During these chili months, enjoy steaming spicy bhajias, hot curries, fried foods, coffee, hot soups and cups of masala chai under a blanket.

Here is the list of foods which you should intake and avoid during these cool months.

Foods to Intake:

Spices and Herbs

Don’t hold your cravings for spicy food this winter. Add following spices in your diet.

  • Ginger

Cut ginger into small slices and add it to your vegetables and tea. It not only increases the flavor of the food, but also improves the digestion.

  • Basil (Tulsi)

Wash 2-3 leaves basil leaves and chews them in the morning. You can also crush them and add to the tea. It provides you warmth and protects against fever and cold.

  • Other Warming Spices

Include mustard, pepper, ajwain, cloves and cinnamon in your diet and get rid of chill spells of the winter.

Grains

  • Sorghum (Jowar) and Pearl Millet (Bajra)

Enjoy bhakri (a meal made up of jowar and bajra flour) with zesty garlic chutney! These millets absorb calcium and helps in strengthening muscle tissues.

  • Eat gruels and chapattis of corn, oats and barley. You can also have them boiled.

Seeds and Nuts

  • Seasame Seeds

Til (seasame seeds) is a good source of copper, calcium, iron and magnesium. It aids in digestion and produces heat in the body.

  • Peanuts

It contains mono-saturated fats which is good for your heart. Besides vitamin B3 and E, it is also rich in antioxidants.

  • Fennel and pumpkin seeds also warm up your body.

Veggies

  • Sweet Potatoes

You can have them in a soup, grilled, baked or boiled. It contains carbohydrates, fibre, Vitamins A and C.

  • Spinach

Begin your day with spinach juices and soups. Spinach contains antioxidants that keep winter melancholy at bay. It is also rich in calcium and iron.

Also include following veggies in your diet:

  • Carrots and radish
  • Onion and garlic
  • Methi
  • Turnips
  • Beets
  • Pulses (chana, moong and soyabean)
  • Green beans

Dry Fruits

Snack on following dry fruits. They take long time to digest, thereby checking your appetite.

  • Almonds
  • Apricots
  • Raisins
  • Walnuts
  • Cashewnuts
  • Date

Fruits

Don’t forget to incorporate following fruits in your diet plan.

  • Peach
  • Papaya
  • Amla
  • Pineapple

So, beat the winter blues by having these warm foods.

Foods to Avoid:

Did you know that in winters, food is better digested? You feel hungrier during this season. But, don’t overeat. Otherwise, it will disturb your metabolism and burns off those extra calories which is required to warm your body.

Avoid eating following foods:

  • Processed chips
  • Cold drinks
  • Ice-creams
  • Cucumbers
  • White breads
  • Rice
  • Butter (in excess)

Happy winters!

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