EAT RIGHT – WINTER TIPS

Madhoo Salunkhe

Madhoo Salunkhe

Masters in Sports Nutrition & Clinical Nutrition

The weather seems to be fluctuating by the day!

In addition to bringing unpredictability in the climate, such changes bring a host of health problems too. Eating according to the seasons is what nature demands!

The real problem isn’t with the changes that occur around us in the climate, but our failures to change our dietary habits with the changing of seasons. In fact, nearly all functions in our body change when the seasons change!

Your Gut Bacteria turn over, your Immune system changes, and your Hormones and Moods change !

Our ancestors had it all figured out. They knew that changes in seasons were inevitable and that man must change his or her diet and lifestyle accordingly. They therefore, spaced festivals all the year-round, to signal specific changes that had to be ushered in at certain times of the year

Our bodies are really intelligent, and they work to keep us regulated and balanced when the world around us changes. This, is called “Homeostasis”, a big part of which is body temperature regulation.

A little bit of Science for the interested –

“The human body modifies itself to an insulin-resistant state during winters to be more fuel-efficient & perform optimally with a small amount of food. Our liver boosts fat production so that we are prepared for the ‘Winter’.

Similarly, during late winters and early spring, the body shifts back to an insulin-sensitive state to prepare for the summer and the abundance of food.”

FEBRUARY - WHAT TO EAT?

Winters are receding, but our bodies still have to work harder to keep us warm during February.  Our Immune systems will need an extra boost, to help keep us as healthy as possible.

Foods or supplements that are high in antioxidants may help, as will Zinc, Iron, and Vitamins C, A & E.

  • Diet with cereals, Dals and soybean which contain all the vitamins help increase immunity and prevent illnesses.
  • Freshly Harvested Fruits & vegetables add variety and give us a boost of multivitamins
  • Have plenty of Soups & Juices made from seasonal vegetables and fruits available in abundance in winter.
  • Carrots, beets, green leafy vegetables as well as other root-based vegetables are extremely beneficial and can be had steamed or otherwise.
  • Include Sweet, Sour, and Salty tastes more than the Astringent, Bitter, & Pungent tastes. Sour Amlas, for example, will give you the precious Vitamin C and also help you build immunity, ward off respiratory diseases and disorders. 
  • Avoid chilled beverages, processed or/and frozen food since it may have an adverse effect on the immune system.
  • Eat fresh, organic, easily digestible, and wholesome foods.
  • Avoid skipping meals, Your dinner should be your lightest meal of the day.
  • Have dinner at least three hours before going to sleep.
  • Munch on nuts and raisins soaked in water if you feel hungry in between. 
  • Most Importantly – Eat, Drink, Exercise & Rest at regular intervals.
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