Winter is the perfect time for cosy blankets and hot chocolate. But winters can also be a difficult time for our bodies as we are more susceptible to chills and cold during this season. Cold tires the heart and reduces the body’s defense. It is no coincidence that heart attacks and strokes are more elevated during the winter months. The easiest and most delicious way to stimulate our cardiac system is the fruits. Winter fruits are beneficial since they have high nutritional value, vitamins, and antioxidants.
In India winter sets in by November through most parts of the country and stays till the end of February and some part of March. Different regions produce different fruits in the winter and fresh harvest of these fruits for the season offer wide variety of choices to stay healthy. Here are six fruits that will keep you from getting a runny nose!
An Apple a day keeps the doctor away.
Apples are widely harvested during the winter months and for this reason are easily available. Rich in fiber and antioxidants they support the digestive system, blood sugar levels and heart health. The high phytonutrient content means that apples are an excellent fruit to include to help protect against cancer. They are also proven to be anti- asthmatic because of the presence of high levels of quercitin which can be particularly helpful in calming inflammation of the airways.
Wake up and smell the Guavas!
Guavas are a powerhouse of nutrients. This humble fruit is extraordinarily rich in vitamin C, lycopene and antioxidants that are beneficial for good health. Since it contains about 80% of water it helps keep your skin hydrated. The magnesium present in guavas helps to relax the muscles and nerves of the body. So after a hard workout or a long day at the office, a guava is certainly what you need to relax your muscles, combat stress and give your system an energy boost.
Orange juice has become an integral part of a healthy breakfast thus promoting a healthy start to the day. Like all citrus fruits, oranges are rich in vitamin C which increases the production of white blood cells boosting immunity. Getting adequate amount of vitamin C daily reduces your risk of developing cancer and heart ailments. Their thick skin prevents them from bruising and so you can easily toss one in your bag for a quick mid-morning snack or add orange wedges to your grilled chicken salad.
The forbidden fruit
It takes a lot of trouble to get to the red crystal like berries of a pomegranate! But they are worth the effort because pomegranates are a rich source of potassium and vitamin C which are useful in cleansing your body and building immunity. Pomegranates help in the supply of iron to the blood, thus helping to reduce symptoms of anemia, which include exhaustion, dizziness, and weakness. The fruit has been known for its benefits since the time of the ancient Egyptians and was found buried alongside King Tut, ” in hopes of a second life.” Some scholars go as far as to suggest it was a pomegranate, not apple that tempted Eve.
A berry for your thought
Cranberry is a versatile fruit that can be consumed in various either in raw or dried form. It is rich in antioxidants and helps keep your body cool, as people tend to consume less water due to cold resulting in excess body heat. Known for their pleasing, pucker-inducing tartness and ability to enhance a wide range of dishes, cranberries are a welcome addition to almost everything. They’re great with trail mix or alone as a snack. Cranberry juice is renowned for its effectiveness in treating urinary tract infections because it inhibits bacteria from attaching to the bladder and urethra. Cranberries are also a great stress reliever and help with concentration skills by tackling anxiety and depression.
The Versatile Bite
In India strawberries are synonymous with winter. They are a great source of fibre and help in bowel movements. Many beauty gurus swear by the magical properties of strawberries. This is because strawberries contain anthrocyanin, which is a powerful antioxidant that protects us from the damaging effects of UV rays. These antioxidants also help prevent cataracts and fight free radicals, that are responsible for early ageing. Strawberries are an amazing source of folate (the folic acid found in food), which can help prevent depression and is also essential for pregnant women.
The Chinese Gooseberry
The vibrant green slices specked with little black seeds have always worked wonders in sprucing up desserts and fruit bowls. Kiwi is an exotic fruit and is loaded with dietary fiber, which helps in the prevention of numerous diseases. This wonder fruit contains lutein ( a type of phytochemical) that can also help in preventing eye problems and macular degeneration in adults. This fuzzy brown powerhouse is also rich in vitamin A, K, E and B, potassium, and copper. The health benefits kiwis provide translate into protection against several cancers, coronary heart disease and the risk of stroke, potential relief from irritable bowel syndrome, and support for pregnant mothers, fetuses, and small children.