10 Summer Vegetables to Add in Your Diet

10 Summer Vegetables to Add in Your Diet

Summers can be an uncomfortable time of the year when it is so hot; you find yourself scrambling towards the AC or the fan every chance you get. The scorching heat could make you wish for a never-ending supply of cold fizzy drinks. We can’t control the temperatures outside, but we can keep cool on the inside by eating healthy, hearty vegetables. In this article, we list the top 10 cooling vegetables for the summer season.

Cool and Vitamin-rich Vegetables to Eat This Summer

Here are 10 summer vegetables in India to help you manage the tropical heat. Remember these names of vegetables for the summer, as they will help you keep your body cool and beat the heat.

1. Cucumber

One of the most popular vegetables during summer times, cucumbers are not only nutritious but also versatile. Most often, they are consumed raw in the form of salads, or as part of beverages. Some varieties of cucumbers are added in curries like rasam.

Cucumbers

Why You Should Eat It

Cucumbers have a high water content, which makes them perfect for hot days. In addition to this, they are rich in antioxidants, Vitamin K and Vitamin C. They are 96% water and serve as a good option to keep yourself hydrated.

2. Tomatoes

Though technically a fruit, tomatoes are most commonly identified as a vegetable in India. Irrespective of its ‘identity crisis’, tomatoes will always be an important part of the Indian diet. Consumed raw in salads and in juices, in curries, and sauces, tomatoes are heroes when it comes to combating the summer heat.

Tomatoes

Why You Should Eat It

Tomatoes are a great way to stay hydrated, particularly if it is eaten raw since 94-95% of it is made up of water. Tomatoes are also rich in antioxidants like lycopene and serve as an excellent source of vitamins (C and K), potassium and calcium.

3. Bottle Gourd

Popularly known as lauki, bottle gourds belong in this list. This vegetable is worthy of the first place in the vegetable kingdom for its taste and nutritional content. It has a long shelf life in the fridge and is often added as the vegetable component to curries.

Bottle gourd or lauki

Why You Should Eat It

Aside from having a high water content, bottle gourds are also rich in calcium, which makes them good for the bones. For ages, it has acted as a home remedy for treating stomach issues, high cholesterol and to regulate blood sugar.

4. Brinjals

Brinjals, or eggplants, may seem like an unlikely addition in a list of vegetables good for the summer. This wholesome vegetable is popularly consumed as a side dish in India and pairs well with almost all combination of spices.

Brinjals

Why You Should Eat It

Brinjals are rich in fibre which makes it essential for gut health. In addition to this, brinjals contain flavonoids, vitamins and potassium and more, all of which contribute to the overall health.

5. Pumpkin

With over 40 varieties, pumpkins are a popular vegetable all over the globe (for good reasons). In India, this sweet vegetable is often a savoury side dish and serves as an accompaniment to chapattis. They can also be incorporated into sweet dishes like pumpkin kheer.

Pumpkin

Why You Should Eat It

Pumpkins are very rich in Vitamin A that strengthens your immune system to fend off diseases. Additionally, pumpkins are a good source of the antioxidant, beta-carotene, which helps you combat heart disease and keeps your body temperature cool.

6. Bitter Gourd

An unsung hero, the bitter gourd may not be on anyone’s favourite list, but it should be, considering its health benefits. Historically, bitter gourd juice has been used as a popular home remedy to treat various ailments of the stomach and heart.

Bitter gourd

Why You Should Eat It

Don’t let the bitter taste of this vegetable put you off; it’s loaded with nutrients such as calcium, vitamin C, iron and potassium. It aids digestion and regulates blood sugar, which in turn, helps the body tackle the hot weather.

7. Green Leafy Vegetables

Spinach, amaranth leaves and mint are just a few examples of the leafy vegetables that are good for you, especially during summers. These are versatile ingredients in the kitchen and can be eaten as soups, in daals, parathas, salads, juices and loads more.

Green leafy vegetables

Why You Should Eat It

Green leafy vegetables (the darker, the better) are an excellent source of minerals such as iron and calcium. They are excellent for the summers also because they have a high water content, rich in folates and are very light on the stomach.

8. Peppers

Perhaps India’s most favourite vegetable, peppers include different types of green capsicums; green, red and yellow capsicum. Used in almost all the dishes across all regional cuisines, peppers not only spice up your food but also have a lot of health benefits.

Peppers in the summer

Why You Should Eat It

Peppers are loaded with capsaicin (hence the name capsicum), which is a phytochemical that gives the peppers its spicy and distinct flavour. This chemical boosts your metabolism, improves digestion, aids weight loss and is often considered to relieve pain. Peppers are also rich in vitamins and antioxidants which makes it an essential addition to your summer diet.

9. Green Beans

Green beans or just beans are a staple in the Indian cuisine. Steamed, stir-fried or even raw, this tasty vegetable is a popular addition to various weight-loss diets for its low-calorie count. It is one of the most easily available vegetables in the market as it is grown all year round.

Green beans

Why You Should Eat It

Green beans are ideal for the summers. Not only are they light, but they are also rich in fibre which improves digestion. They are also rich in Vitamin K that is required for good bone health, and also contain nutrients like protein, iron, zinc and antioxidants.

10. Carrots

Another staple, and popular all over the world, carrots are an important root vegetable. Similar to green beans, carrots are grown throughout the year and are reasonably priced (perfect for budget meals). Consumed raw, roasted, stir-fried or even as a juice, this tasty vegetable is loaded with tons of nutrients which are essential for the body.

Carrots

Why You Should Eat It

Rich in beta-carotene, carrots help synthesise Vitamin A which is extremely good for the eyes. Carrots are also rich in Vitamin B6, magnesium, folic acid and antioxidants. They are also high in fibre which makes them easy to digest, and are particularly helpful when you want something light on hot days.

Even though fruits are the more sought-after food during the summers, it is essential for us to consume a healthy amount of vegetables as well; which is why it is recommended we eat a good portion of both. This list contains only the top ten among the many vegetables that are good for the human body. Vegetables are versatile in the kitchen and can be included in a plethora of recipes (for the summers as well), and they’re perfect for the spice-oriented Indian palate.

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