What to eat during extreme heat?

Centar za nutricionizam i dijetetiku inga markovic

The food that ‘makes you warm’ should be consumed during colder days, while the food that ‘cools down’ the body should be eaten during warm summer days. Hot soups, broths, and meat stews will heat the whole body during cold winter days, while cold teas, fruit juices, cold salads, and meals with a lot of vegetables will cool down everyone during hot and steamy days. We should eat groceries that make as cold when we have a high temperature as well, no matter the season.
During extreme heat, the needs of our organism decrease when it comes to preservation of temperature, while our daily calory intake goes through the same process. For every increasement of temperature above 10 ºC above the average annual temperature in the moderate climatic region, it is necessary to reduce the energetic value of the meal, calculated based on the body mass, for five percent.

The basic recommendations based on everything stated above would be:
-Decrease the total energy intake, which means that we should opt for a hypocaloric diet with decreased intake of proteins, carbohydrates, and fat.
-Avoid eating fatty and heavy food
-Avoid eating simple sugars from baked and confectionery goods
-Avoid drinking energy drinks and sweetened or fizzy drinks
-Avoid alcohol
-Drink 2,5l of water a day
-Eat more of leafy green vegetables like cabbage, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, lettuce, as well as fruitful and root vegetables like bell pepper, tomato, eggplant, carrot, radish, parsnip, celery, and beets since this vegetable has a low caloric value because of the high content of water and low levels of proteins, carbohydrates, and fat.

These types of vegetables have a high content of mineral salts like potassium, phosphor, calcium, magnesium, iron, copper, and other trace elements. They are also full of soluble vitamins (vitamin C in leafy vegetables, carotene and vitamin B complex in root vegetable), as well as organic acids, and a significant amount of plant fibers. It would be good to consume it as a salad, which contributes to the preservation of its biological values.

Potatoes are not a great choice during summer days because of the small percentage of water that they contain and a lot of starch, especially fried in oil or baked alongside meat products.
We should avoid legumes during extreme heat as well because they contain a lot of proteins and starch.
Bulbous vegetables are great during this period because of its low energy value and significant antioxidant and bactericidal potential.
An increased intake of vegetables is extremely important during summer months with patients that suffer from chronic diseases.

-Increase the intake of fruits that are full of water like cherries, apples, pears, grapes, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, watermelon, melon, peaches, lemon, oranges, figs, etc. because they contain up to 91% of water and have low energy values, low amounts of fat, and proteins, but a lot of vitamins and minerals. People who suffer from diabetes should be careful since they need to take care of the amount of type of fruit they eat. Fruits high in fat like walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, peanuts, and sunflower or pumpkin seeds are not good during extreme temperatures because they are high in fat, proteins, carbohydrates, and energy levels.


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