We all enjoy witnessing the seamless climatic transition from winter to summer to the much-awaited showers. While these seasonal changes might amuse us, we do dread the impact of the changing climate on our immunity. Our physique becomes susceptible to contagions and allergic reactions throughout this time and that is one of many explanations why a lot of people continue to fall prey to winter chills, cough, and seasonal flu. To guard our immunity from these seasonal intruders it is often advised to eat and follow a healthy lifestyle, but end up following making diet mistakes that pose further challenges for our immunity.
Following are some diet mistakes that you may be inadvertently making and are not helping in sustaining your immunity in any way:
Fail to stay properly hydrated: During winter and monsoon, you don’t feel as thirsty as you do in summer. But you must ensure to drink sufficient amount of water throughout the day to facilitate your body to stay hydrated. Dehydration can make you feel weak, thus taking a toll on your immunity. For an instant immunity booster, ensure that you are drinking warm water, and avoiding chilled water. Blending ingredients like ginger, lemongrass and tulsi in your water or tea will help reinstate your immune levels.
Failing to clean veggies prior to cooking: In order to avert contamination, you must get habituated to properly clean your greens and meat before you cook them.
Eating uncooked meals: This will offer an instant entry to pathogens that will ultimately take a toll on your well-being. Cooking meals help kill harmful bacteria. Eating uncooked and raw veggies like carrots and cucumber is recommended, but ensure that is not representing nearly all of your eating regimen.
Consuming a protein-deprived diet: Protein is typically referred to as the constructing block of your life. This is an extremely crucial nutrient to uphold one’s immunity.
Not consuming meals at regular intervals: Your diet plan should be designed in a way that you eat healthy at least five times a day. Starving yourself to shed kilos will do no good towards sustaining immunity. This is because starving or not eating at intervals might lead to over-eating, which will further increase the peril of obesity. Never skip meals during a climatic transition. Doing so might have an extreme effect on your health, which might additionally deteriorate your immunity in the long run. Instead, you must consider adding essential nutrients in your diet to stay healthy.
Increased intake of junk edibles: Binging on junk food might contribute to weight problems, which have an ability to trigger different metabolic issues. Hence you must keep edibles that have excessive trans-fats at bay.
Consuming a sugar-rich diet: Sugar-rich edibles are likely to alter blood glucose and offer satiety for a transitory time interval. They fail to provide the body with the necessary vitamins you need to stay healthy during a climate change. A diet rich in sugars will slowly begin to affect your balanced immune system.
Excessive intake of salt: Consuming an excessive salt intake can lead to health issues like hypertension and water retention that will result in declining immunity. You keep yourself away from meals rich in sodium.
Limit intake of spices: When consumed in a small quantity, spices can do wonders for boosting your immunity, however, once you go overboard, you might be doing extra bad than good.
Not eating a diet rich in vegetables: Vegetables are low-calorie, nutrient-dense substitutes to other edibles. Being super nutritious and wholesome; these are much recommended throughout all the seasons.
Increased intake of meat and dairy products: It has been researched that meat and dairy consumption tend to have an adverse impact on climate change and indirectly tend to affect our immunity. Livestock is accountable for about fifteen per cent of the global greenhouse gas emissions. Cattle seem to be the biggest culprit. Raised for milk consumption, cows tend to represent about sixty-five per cent of the livestock sector's emissions, followed by pork (nine per cent) buffalo milk (eight per cent), and poultry and eggs (eight per cent) respectively.
The livestock production is also liable for other greenhouse gas emissions, such as nitrous oxide (N20) and carbon dioxide (CO2), mainly through their feed production, which often involves large applications of nitrogen-based fertilizers. These, when consumed, can have undesirable health impacts. A diet without meat products can condense the emissions of greenhouse gas by 49 per cent. Hence it is recommended to go slow on meat and dairy consumption and instead up the intake of plant-based diets during climatic fluctuations.
We can end the impacts of climatic fluctuations on our well-being but we can surely safeguard our immunity through correcting our eating habits.
(Dr Siddhant Bhargava is Fitness & Nutritional Scientist, Co-Founder, Food Darzee)