Friday, July 13, 2012

Escape Summer's Heat Through Healthy Living

Today's post is by guest blogger Nili Abrahams.
Summer is upon us, and thanks to climate change it feels hotter than usual all around the world.
Are there any secrets to staying cool when the temperatures are reaching record highs? Is there a better way to eat or exercise for heat relief?
According to an ancient medical science called Ayurveda the summer is the fire season or the Pitta season. This science teaches us what to eat and how to act to balance this Pitta element so that we will feel cooler and more comfortable all season long. The summer or Pitta is made of fire and water, and its qualities are hot, sharp, oily, and light. During summer season you can reduce the heat within your own body by eating a diet of cooling foods and moving in a cooling manner.
So what is this cool way of eating? The best food choices to stay cool include: sweet, juicy fruits like melons, plums, and peaches. Add bitter and astringent vegetable such as cucumber, mint, collards, kale and cilantro while including digestive spices to your food such as cumin, coriander, fennel and turmeric.  You should limit hot, spicy, fermented, salty, oily, fried foods as it will increase the heat in your body and make you feel hotter. And finally reduce or eliminate alcohol and caffeine as they are both sharp and hot keeping you hot when you want to cool down. Please remember to drink plenty of cool, fresh water.
It is always important during every season to exercise regularly, but the type of exercise you do should also be in balance with the time of year. During the heat of summer, it’s best to swim and do gentle yoga. If you prefer biking and running, try to save doing these activites in the early morning and evening when the temperature is slightly cooler.
Many people love to do Bikram’s hot yoga, but I would encourage them to switch to a cooler type during the heat of summer. Specific yoga postures and breathing exercises are more cooling than others.
So follow these simple changes and feel comfortable this summer.
About the Author: Nili Abrahams, Certified Holistic Health Coach, MBA has 25 years experience in academia, corporate training and institutional food sales.  She currently has a Health Coaching practice in Israel where she offers workshops, group programs and one-on-one consultations. Hear her on Arutzsheva Radio each Wednesday on the hour, every half hour at

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