This summer stay away from those sodas and health drinks. Instead try some of these natural and healthy age old coolers that are not just delightful to the tastebuds but also good for the body.
Nimbu pani/Shikanji/Lemonade- we’ve been chugging them since our childhood . Probably one of the easiest drinks to make, the fact that my kiddos can make a lean lemonade proves it. Lemon also helps us detox and perks up our metabolism which otherwise slows down as the heat rises.
Tea- It does not necessarily have to be ice tea, the regular Chai also is a coolant. The hot brew causes sweating and that is why it’s on the list of coolers. Not to mention the caffeine element gets one up and going. If the idea of milk and ginger in your tea does not excite you, then opt for green tea.
Mint tea- Mint is a perennial herb that’s easy to grow as well. The menthol in this herb helps lower temperature and also creates a cooling sensation on nerves of throat.
Chaas or buttermilk- Contrary to its name, this is actually far from being buttery. The frothy light chaas is also a good digestive aid and has very few calories. Season it with some crushed green chillies and cumin for that extra flavor.
Tamarind water- An old Ayurveda concoction that is terribly delicious. Mix tamarind pulp with some water , sugar, add some coriander powder to this and voila it’s ready. It helps soothe ulcers and also combats heatstroke.
Aam panna -I remember how this used to be a household staple in every fauji house and I learnt to make it too as an army wife. It was a good way to use those mangoes that flourished on trees planted years ago by sensible occupants.
Sattu – Nothing but ground roasted chickpeas and heals stomach infections. This is mixed with water and traditionally this water was cooled in earthern pots.
Jaljeera- Is there anyone who hasn’t had this cumin based drink, even kids love it .Did you know Cumin also possesses cancer fighting properties?
Solkadi- A coastal favourite from the Konkan region , this kokum based drink is usually had post meal. This rose pink tangy flavoured drink is made from kokum with coconut milk, some cumin seeds and chilies. Yes this is a savoury cooler!
Fresh fruit juices- Juice up those colourful fruits that flood the orchards - watermelon, mango, etc and use some innovative ideas to zest it up.
Coconut water. –this naturally sweet nectar helps replenish the electrolyte which is lost through sweating. It’s very rich in potassium and has many fans in athletes who prefer this to regular sports drinks.
Woodapple or bel sherbet.- My ancestral land, Uttar Pradesh, loves this fruit and it blooms abundantly in this season. It’s good for digestion which otherwise gets affected during summer, besides it also perks metabolism and is a great source of energy .
The pics used are not my own.