Our appetites generally take a dive in hot-humid or dry climates. Luckily, the summer brings with it an array of delicious, cooling and refreshing fruits. Marketplaces in India are lined with the freshest produce of the season such as sweet limes, pears, watermelons, papayas and of course mangoes.
Benefits of Eating Seasonal Fruits
Fresh fruits are the best way to replenish electrolytes lost due to perspiration. It is healthier to consume fruits that are in season, because they will not be treated with preservatives or chemicals to induce artificial ripening. Another incentive for picking seasonal fruits is that they are more affordable and you can easily purchase them at your local vendor for a fair price.
Also, fruits are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, fibre, vitamin C and folate. Fruits provide nutrients vital for health and maintenance of your body. Most fruits are naturally low in fat, sodium and calories.
Summer fruits give you energy and nutrients your body needs, help cool you down and stay hydrated. It is believed that people who eat fruit as part of an overall healthy diet generally have a reduced risk of chronic diseases.
Getting Creative with Summer Fruits
Including a variety of fruits in our summer diet is a great way to improve vitamin C levels in our bodies. Here are some ideas to help you get creative with summer fruits.
1. Fruit Smoothies Fresh fruit smoothies are a great beverage to have during the summer. Freeze any of your favourite fruits and then blend them in a mixer until smooth. Season this with some rock salt and serve cold.
2. Fresh Fruit Salads Fruit Salads make for a healthy alternative to desserts packed with sugar and carbs. Dice up a fresh ripe mango. Add some grapes, chopped papaya, melon, pineapple and kiwi. Garnish the salad with fresh mint leaves and some rock salt and dig in. You could also add a dollop of whipped cream.
3. Fruity popsicles Fruity popsicles make a fun summer treat for both young and old. Juice up any fruit of your choice, mix in a bit of rock salt, pour the juice into ice cream moulds, freeze until solid and voila!
4. Fruit pudding
For Mango-chia pudding:
• Add some fresh mango to a blender and make it into a purée. Then add chia seeds, milk, maple syrup [optional] and the mango purée to a mixing bowl and whisk it together until smooth.
• Then add in some chunks of fresh mango and stir in.
• Place into the fridge for 15 minutes and then bring it out and give it a stir, and then put it back into the fridge for another 15 minutes and your pudding is ready.
Salt and fruit have an age-old relationship. Sprinkling rock salt over cut fruit is a common practice in many households. Research by Gary Beauchamp and Paul Breslin found that salt diminishes our ability to taste bitterness and thus enhances our perception of sweetness.(1) In addition to enhancing the flavour of the fruit, rock salt is packed with essential nutrients and trace elements that add to the nourishment of your meal.
Uses of Rock Salt for Health
● Rock salt, when added to food, helps to improve digestion, relieve stomach pain and fight infections.
● It can be used to stimulate the body’s metabolism and improve overall functioning.
● It helps reduce sugar cravings.
● It regulates our sleep cycle by regulating melatonin levels.(2)
While it is important to choose fresh seasonal produce, it is also necessary to choose the right ingredients to accompany your meals. For your fruit salads, smoothies and more, use Rock Salt by Tata which is sourced from the Himalayas and contains essential minerals like calcium, magnesium and potassium. Eat right, stay healthy!
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