Foods recommended by Ayurveda to be consumed in winters
Ayurveda recommended foods for winters
Winter is a time to snuggle with your loved ones and eat & drink warm foods that not just warms you up, but satiate your soul as well. It’s the season when all we look forward to is, comfort food. From crispy chips to a bowl of hot & sizzling Maggi or even a warm brownie with some chocolate on top of it, comfort food can have different definitions for different people. When this kind of food is consumed, it drains one’s energy while bringing imbalance in the body that can lead to Vata, Pitta and Kapha dosha. According to ritucharya or the seasonal regimen integral to Ayurveda, from early winter (hemant) till late winter (shishir), there are more cases of Vata and Kapha imbalance. While a balanced Kapha helps in the lubrication of joints, immunity and softness of the skin and if this dosha is in excess, it can lead to mucus-related illnesses, weight gain, dullness and even negative emotions. On the other hand, if your Vata dosha is aggravated, it can lead to indigestion and joint pains. So, we talked to Dr. Vishakha Mahindroo, Senior Ayurveda expert who told us that one should consider eating such foods, which not only comforts & pacify the Vata and Kapha dosha but keep you warm as well. So, here is the Ritucharya diet one must follow in winter. (Image courtesy: Canva)
What is Ritucharya diet?
According to a study published in ‘An International Quarterly Journal of Research in Ayurveda’, ritucharya translates to rules or regimens that vary with the change of seasons. These rules serve as the seasonal guidelines that explain what kind of foods one must eat in winters to pacify the doshas and make us feel warm as well. According to these rules, one must have foods like gud, khichadi with ghee, warm golden milk, sesame seeds, sugarcane products, soaked nuts like almonds & walnuts, chicken soup, green leafy vegetables with ghee and green tea that’s made with herbs like basil, lemongrass and ginger. Each one of these foods has its benefits and must be eaten during this period. Below is a list of all such foods that can be eaten in Ritucharya diet with their benefits.
Made from sugarcane, jaggery generates heat inside the body while cleansing it of any kind of pollution. This is such wonderful food that it can also help in boosting your immunity while enhancing the production of digestive enzymes. So, all in all, one must include this food in their winter diet.
Khichdi with ghee
It’s a superfood that has been there in Indian cuisine for ages and is known to increase your immunity as well. It is for this reason that those who do not keep well, are advised to eat this superfood with some cow ghee. This combination of rice & lentils when combined with veggies provides essential amino acids to the human body and makes the dish protein-rich as well.
Sesame seeds (til)
Sesame seeds are naturally warm and full of good fats. These seeds are known to be rich in copper, iron, zinc and various vitamins. These seeds are so good that they can keep the winter flu away while helping you build strong immunity. It is for this reason that one can find sesame seeds in most of the desserts prepared in winters - Til Laddu and Til Chikki.
Green leafy vegetables with ghee
During this season, one needs extra protection to ward off the seasonal cold & flu. Thus, one must have green leafy veggies like palak, Sarson, chaulai, methi leaves, bathua in winters but with some cow ghee. This combination will provide you with an immunity boost, enough warmth while keeping you satiated as well.
Call it golden milk or turmeric milk, it provides you with the much-required warmth in the winter season. It is also suggested to drink this milk at bedtime to get relief from stiff joints, indigestion, winter sinuses and even the seasonal cold & cough.
During the chilly winter, a bowl of chicken soup is the best food to have for that ultimate comfort and of course warmth. The preparation of this soup has all kinds of spices in it, which generates heat in the body and thus increases the warmth.
Herbal green tea
We all look forward to hot drinks in winters to comfort ourselves and to get that warmth. How about having herbal green tea that has been made with basil, ginger and lemongrass. This green tea will provide you instant relief from the chilly winter while increasing your immunity. You can have this hot drink twice a day.