As much of the country sweats its way through a steamy heat wave, we wanted to share some tips on summer treats that taste good and help our bodies tolerate the heat. The folks at Food Republic have shared a handy list
of food ingredients that actually help the body to stay cool in warm weather, and we wanted to share some of the highlights.
Foods rich in water.
There’s a reason watermelon is such a summer staple, and it goes beyond taste. It takes a lot of energy to raise water just a single degree of temperature – so the more you consume, the cooler your body can stay. Foods rich in water, like cucumbers and melons, add water to your body – and staying power to a lower body temp.
As the Food Republic piece explains, astringency is the characteristic that gives some foods a “dry, almost puckering feeling” – common to red wine as well as beans, lentils, bananas and grapes. Astringency contracts the tissues in your body as you consume it, leading to increased water absorption that helps keep your body cool.
Leafy green veggies.
Yummy veggies like broccoli, spinach and kale come packed with calcium, which is crucial to your body’s ability to regulate its temperature. The more calcium-rich foods you eat, the better your body’s ability to help you stay cool during hot weather.
We at Van’s are on record for our unabashed love of whole grains (which we happen to use pretty frequently in Van’s products). In addition to whole grains’ association with longer life and better health, they also provide protection against summer heat. Nearly all whole grains contain high levels of magnesium, which helps to relax muscle and nerve cells – and to help the body absorb the crucial calcium we mentioned above.
For more ideas on stay-cool summer eating, check out Cooking Light’s 7 Stay-Cool Foods.