The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a heat wave warning for the northern states of India, alerting people to be prepared to combat temperatures of 45 degrees Celsius or above. According to health experts, it is essential to take preventative measures to reduce the risks associated with extreme heat. As mercury levels rise, your digestion can suffer. This happens because the bacterial composition of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract changes, leading to gastrointestinal flare-ups that cause more stomach upset and diarrhea than normal. Therefore, it is important that you know how to manage your digestion in the summer. Following certain diet and lifestyle tips can help you beat the potential adverse effects of heat waves on your stomach.
Health Shots spoke to Deepti Lokeshappa, Senior Consultant, Nutritionist and Dietitian, Motherhood Hospitals, Indiranagar, Bengaluru, to understand how you can manage your digestive system in the summer.
Thejaswini says: “The heat of summer can affect a person’s immunity and digestion. Due to this, the resistance of the digestive tract and digestive capacity are decreased, leading to symptoms such as loss of appetite, constipation, heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome, dehydration symptoms, and heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion. ”. You can control these health problems by maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle!
Tips for better digestion in summer
Follow these 8 diet and lifestyle tips to keep digestive problems and indigestion at bay in the summer:
1. Stay hydrated
During the summer season, hydration is important to ensure that the body functions smoothly. Drinking enough water helps to balance the loss of body fluids in the heat, as well as to solve digestive problems by improving the absorption of nutrients. Sometimes switching to coconut water is helpful as it allows the body to combat the scorching heat effectively.
2. Add probiotics to your diet
Adding probiotics like yogurt or kombucha to your diet during the summer helps ease the digestion process as it contains good gut bacteria.
3. Maintain physical activity regularly
The incorporation of exercises or physical activity can improve digestion and general well-being, since it reduces stress levels.
4. Avoid fried foods
The type of food and its amount contribute greatly to the digestion process. During the summer season, eating lighter portions of food at regular intervals helps ease the digestion process. It is good to avoid oily or greasy foods which may not be easy to digest and may lead to bloating or heartburn.
5. Maintain a balanced diet
Food can help ease the digestion process or pose difficulties in your digestive health. Therefore, consuming the right food is crucial during the summer season. Adding in-season fruits and green vegetables like tomatoes, apples, watermelon, cucumber, and pineapple aid in hydration and troublesome digestion. Also, add more fiber to your diet as it can make your digestion smooth and easy.
6. Avoid dairy products or coffee
Milk has the ability to heat up the body, which causes problems in digestion, so dairy products such as butter, ice cream, and cheese should be limited in the summer season. Aside from dairy products, coffee, alcohol, and other carbonated beverages can cause stomach irritation because these products cause dehydration.
7. Stay away from spicy or oily foods
Spicy food produces heat, which can cause digestive problems, since in some cases it causes heartburn, bloating and stomach inflammation. Therefore, in the summer season, it is recommended to avoid spicy and greasy foods to avoid abdominal discomfort.
8. Eat frequent meals
Apart from eating spicy, fried and junk food, overeating is also one of the main causes of indigestion in summer. Always prefer to eat frequent meals, especially if you already have digestive problems. It will put less pressure on your stomach and make digestion easier. Also, focus on eating light foods.
The digestive system becomes sensitive during the summer season. To avoid digestive problems, it is important to consider lifestyle choices and eating habits.