The rainy season is finally here bringing an end to the hot sweltering summer-time. We all love the romantic rainy season but the change in season, the humidity and the wet environment brings with it a host of health problems. During this time our digestion gets weakened and our immunity is affected.

To keep all kinds of viral, bacterial and fungal infections at bay, here are some dietary do's and don'ts:

1) Drink tulsi, mint, black pepper and ginger tea everyday. These can also be added to your daily cup of chai. These herbs/spices help improve digestion and protect you against viral infections.

2) Eat well-cooked and seasonal vegetables like Dudhi (Bottle Gourd), Karela (Bitter Gourd), Gavaar (Cluster Beans), Parval (Pointed Gourd), Suran (Yam), etc.

3) Non-vegetarian foods if and when consumed should be thoroughly cooked.

4) Water should be filtered, boiled and stored in clean and closed containers. This simple step will help you to stay safe from water-borne diseases like Cholera, Typhoid, Jaundice, Dysentery, etc.

5) Zinc is an essential trace element necessary to build our immunity against cold and cough. Toddlers and adults prone to frequent bouts of cold and cough should take in foods rich in zinc such as whole grains, milk and milk products and eggs on a daily basis to develop their immunity .

6) Cook food in small batches to avoid leftovers. While using leftovers, heat them thoroughly and check their colour, texture and taste before consuming them.

Spices enhance our digestion

7) Use ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric, peppers, carrom(ajwain), jeera, asafoetida(hing) liberally in cooking to enhance your digestion.

8) Have fruits like papaya, pomegranate, plums, apples, pears, cherries to get your daily dose of vitamins and anti-oxidants.

 Things to avoid:

1) Stay away from road-side food stalls, food sold uncovered and food stored in unhygienic conditions to avoid all food borne diseases.

2) Avoid spicy, oily and heavy foods so as not to overburden your weakened digestion.

3) Green leafy vegetables, pre-cut fruits and veggies and seafood are a big no-no as these may contain high levels of contaminants during the monsoons.

4) Decrease or avoid the use of aerated/fizzy drinks as these reduce the absorption of minerals thereby lowering our immunity.

5) Avoid fruits with high water content like muskmelon, watermelon and easily perishable fruits like jamun.

Water quality is of utmost importance

6) Avoid drinking water from sources that lack sanitation. In public places like schools, colleges, hostels or offices, be sure to check the water quality before consuming it.

After having returned from a high spirited ,fun-filled summer holiday, et the monsoons not dampen your spirits.S Stay safe, healthy and active this rainy season to enjoy the bounties of rains.