Summer is coming soon; in fact it is already here in some regions of Mauritius.
The scorching rays of the sun along with the tropical heat are enough to drain one of his or her energy and consequently leads to dehydration and fatigue. Needless to say, Mauritians need to fortify themselves from yet another torrid summer.
One salient way of surviving would be by Clean Eating. As the word itself hints at, the latter leans more towards a healthy way of life while renouncing unhealthy habits and rich, processed food. Clean eating is not only a habit and a way of life but it also renders a person into a better version of themselves. After all, you are what you eat, right?
1. Go green
The first step towards clean eating would be increasing the consumption of fruits & veggies whilst also consuming them on a daily basis.
Fruits and vegetables are essential to any diet and help in several ways. A few benefits of fruits and vegetables are, reducing obesity, fighting off infections and ensuring that the human body stays cool & well hydrated. Vegetables such as greens, cucumber, radishes, zucchini, squash, broccoli, and tomatoes can be consumed in the form of a “salad-in-a-jar”, steamed or as a quick stir-fry.
Additionally, one of the perks of summer, is our local, tropical fruits which can help replenish and hydrate. Between mangoes, watermelons, lychees, and coconuts; these don’t only add up to our healthy well-being but they also taste like heaven.
2. Starting the day with a substantial Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and helps jumpstart our minds and bodies. Having a clean breakfast routine can yield to a more productive well-being, whether physical or mental.
We often have quite a few processed foods in the morning, from flavoured yoghurts, cereals and breads. These add unnecessary chemicals and sugars to our body, whilst also digesting quickly, leaving us drained.
By implementing plain yoghurt, avocado, toast, eggs (boiled, poached or scrambled), cheese, naturally sweet fruits, oatmeal and chia seeds into our breakfast, we lean towards a more healthy way of eating. Clean eating during breakfast will hence help us fight dizziness and constant fatigue from the upcoming heatwave, whilst still keeping us alert throughout the day.
3. Cutting down on sugar
Summer time usually equals ice cream and fizzy drinks. This means that during summer, most people increase their sugar intake. An excess in sugar level, is not only a general drawback for our health, leading to diabetes and whatnot, but it also causes dehydration and is a hindrance to health, especially in summer.
Fruits can be consumed for energy, as they are naturally sweet and packed with fibre, which helps maintain a good digestive system and cleanses the body of all toxins. It also helps get rid of excess sugar in the bloodstream, though as all foods, should be consumed in moderation.
Substitute ice cream and for frozen yoghurt. Plain yoghurt should be considered more often as it boosts energy and one can have it with frozen fruits, instead of added sugar.
4. Drinking a lot of water
You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again- drink plenty of water.
The Mauritian summer heatwave leads to dehydration, sweating and unnecessary, persistent fatigue. We lose more fluids than we know and often wait until we feel thirsty. It is important that we replenish lost fluids before symptoms of dehydration kick in.
Drinking a lot of water goes with clean eating as water is a good form of cleansing, detoxification and it restores the water lost from the body. Detox water is also suggested for those who are looking for something besides plain water or those looking to improve their body and health. For example, lemon, mint, citrus fruits or any fruit or vegetable can be infused into water.
5. Increasing your intake of fruit Smoothies
Smoothies are fresh, full of fibre and vital nutrients that are needed by the body, especially during a hot climate. Smoothies are also a great alternative to breakfast. If someone is in a rush and has no time for breakfast, a fruit smoothie comes in handy.
Fruit smoothies can be a part of the clean eating routine as they tend to be less sugary than juices, milkshake or soft drinks.
This being said, the ingredients used in the smoothie will be the deciding factor as to whether it forms part of a Clean Eating Diet. Try to use organic milk and plain yoghurt instead of skim milk and flavoured yoghurts. Additionally, smoothies are not only hydrating to the body but also to the skin. Looking for a summer glow? Have a fruit smoothie.
6. Eating seafood and avoiding meat
Summer is a great time for seafood, especially fresh seafood like fish and shrimp.
Consuming red meats, especially in excessive amounts is generally not recommended due to the health risks, especially associated with the heart. Deli and cured meats are known to cause dehydration. Clean eating would require to cut down on excess intake of ‘bad’ protein.
Seafood is light and contains good fats, as opposed to red or lean meat. It is a great source of lean protein and some types of fish have the fatty acid, omega. These fatty acids are found in cold-water fish and act as a good hydration source for the body. In addition, it also reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases and nourishes the human body.