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Own your health this monsoon

Do away with the monsoon blues with these tips to have a safe, healthy, happy and stylish monsoon. NT BUZZ dishes out the dos and don’ts…

NT BUZZ
Monsoons are a time that one can catch the worst of the influenzas and colds. Here are some tips that can get you through the monsoons unscathed by viruses and bacteria.

General health and food

With the monsoons comes the tragedy of urbanisation – water logging and spilling over of garbage choked drains. This filth and damp atmosphere often leads to the breeding of many disease causing germs. Allergy, chronic diseases and skin health specialist, Vishal Verenkar states that serious health issues like dengue, malaria, conjunctivitis, typhoid, viral fever, pneumonia, gastro intestinal disturbances, diarrhea and dysentery are very often caused by this occurrence. The immune system is what needs the boost to combat such illnesses. “If your immune system is weak you will catch these diseases instantly. So it is really important to build your immunity to stay away from these diseases,” says dietician and yoga trainer, Deepika Rathod.

The food we eat can boost our immunity against these diseases. Ensuring your immunity runs smoothly can be attained by filling your plate with plenty of colourful servings of fruits and veggies, plus ample amount of water per day, she advises. Her list of go-to foods this monsoon includes: curd/ yoghurt as it contains healthy bacteria that keep the gut and intestinal tract free of disease-causing germs. Oats and other whole grain cereals like wheat, rye, barley and brown rice that provide important B vitamins such as vitamin B6, pantothenoic acid and folic acid are also important as these vitamins support the immune system.

Garlic, says Deepika, contains the active ingredient allicin, which fights infection and bacteria and will prevent you from cold and cough: “I highly recommend my patients to include raw garlic chutney in their daily diet.” Antioxidants rich food are all the fruits, vegetables and nuts also need to be a part of the daily diet as they boost the system. “They also increase the number of white blood cells and provide a sort of cell coating which acts as a barrier against viruses,” she adds.

Tea drinkers have a thing to look forward to. Not only does it warm you up when the temperatures drop, but also certain varieties boost the immune system. “Drink herbal tea that has anti-bacterial properties like chamomile, peppermint as they may help to improve your immunity and help you develop strong immunity against germs and bacteria,” says Deepika. She also stresses that even though it is the monsoons water should not be negated from your daily routine. She advises to drink more than three litres of water per day.

Allergies

With all the foods that can boost the immune system, there are others that can harm it too. Especially in the case of people suffering from allergies, monsoons are a time when you have to go that extra mile to ensure that you don’t fall prey to such reactions. “People who face skin allergies during rainy seasons must avoid spicy foods. Spicy foods raise body temperature and stimulate blood circulation and it leads to allergies and skin irritation. Also avoid eating fried items, fast food, pre-cut fruits and juices from roadside vendors and stick to high quality and hygiene,” shares Deepika stressing that this is the best way to avoid stomach infections.

“Allergies and asthma are triggered by humidity and presence of pollen and moulds in the atmosphere. Excess water in the environment can promote dampness and the growth of fungus on walls which can aggravate asthma. House dust mites are more in damp places thereby increasing asthma symptoms,” says Verenkar. He further directs people to avoid contact with damp walls, use an umbrella or proper rainwear to stay dry, clean bathrooms regularly and keep indoor plants out of bedroom. “Bacteria are active and attack damp and moist skin. They can lead to eczema and dandruff. Fungal infections of body and athlete’s foot are also common in monsoon season. Hair turning dry and brittle with increased incidences of hair loss is very common in this season,” says Verenkar.

Always follow your hygiene routine like cleaning your house, washing hands before and after having a meal, washing feet properly to avoid infections, doing proper exercise and eating mindfully. “Use mosquito repellent, keep your surroundings clean and ensure there is no stagnant water and add a few drops of kerosene oil to stagnant water to ensure mosquitoes don’t breed in it,” advises Verenkar.

Exercise:

Though the gloomy weather outside can make you want to switch the alarm off and curl up in your bed, it is not the best thing to do. The expert agrees that it becomes virtually impossible to follow routine exercise in the gym or just going for a walk, but she asserts that there are some simple substitutes that can enable you to stay fit and healthy. “Stretching not only feels wonderful, but also helps in reducing stress and muscle tension along with increasing blood circulation, skipping ropes is a good cardio exercise which can be done at home without going out in rains. Planks can be done at home to improve your body strength and to tighten your core, also the stairs in your house are a superb exercising device. You can simply start doing stair climbing up and down for a 15-20 minutes,” says Deepika.

Read this article on Navhind Times: http://www.navhindtimes.in/own-your-health-this-monsoon/

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