Of Rains, Pains and Vitamins!
Hi folks! ‘njoying the rains!
I’m sure you’ll agree that no season brings back vivid memories as much as the monsoons do. As kids there were our paper boats in flowing streams, in our youth & as young professionals, those monsoon treks through green mountain trails and romantic walks with our date.
Surely, retirement does not dim the monsoon magic but only increases it, for you now have more time to savour its pleasures. Even Bollywood immortalized the rains, from Shree 420’s ‘Pyaar hua ikraar hua’ to Lagaan’s “Ghanan ghanan gir gir aaye badra”. To sum up, the season brings a welcome change from our monotonous, hot and fast-paced lifestyles. Sadly, all is not fun with just garam chai and bhajias during this season. There’s another side to the monsoon story, where rains disrupt daily schedules, bringing its own share of woes! There are the floods, waterlogging, disrupted daily commutes, and… the deadly monsoon diseases, with pools of stagnant water that become home to creatures spreading deadly diseases like dengue, malaria, etc. Food contamination increases and immunity goes low. And hey, you realize your medical bills have escalated. So where will you get your pep and vigour?
Come on, don’t get morose! For, there’s a way to cheer up and stay healthy. The magic word is – Vitamins. Equip yourself with the right diet, with the right vitamins, in the right proportion, and you have the magic potion for health, at hand. And vitamins come to you in the foods you eat. But how much do we know about them? Here goes…
Mr. Cool Vitamin C
The first vitamin discovered! Before the 18th century, sailors on long journeys had no fresh food intake and suffered from scurvy whose symptoms included bleeding gums, weakness, fatigue and rash. In 1912, the discovery of Vitamin C helped them to fight scurvy. For you see, Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that repairs tissues, is important for the immune system and is an antioxidant. It also lessens the time a person has symptoms of a fever. Well, the lack of Vitamin C in your diet can make you vulnerable to various illnesses like flu, chikungunya and typhoid. Sources – Potatoes, tomatoes, cabbage, leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, guavas, etc..
Athletic Vitamin A
During World War II, German bombers would attack at night, and the British would retaliate with a new secret radar. But to hide the radar’s secret, the British said that their pilots could attack in the dark because they had a high intake of carrots, rich in Vitamin A, to see better. Well… you’re not going to war, but you should know that Vitamin A benefits normal vision, the immune system and reproduction, besides helping the heart, lungs, kidneys, bone metabolism, teeth, mucous membrane, skin and cellular health, etc. It helps prevent diarrhoea, and makes you less susceptible to infections, viral fever, etc. Sources – Eggs, cod liver oil, orange & yellow vegetables and fruits, carrots, spinach, etc.
Brilliant B Complex
The building blocks of a healthy body! They are referred to by the specific number of name of each vitamin i.e. B1 is thiamine, B2 is riboflavin, etc. Vitamin B Complex has a direct impact on our energy levels, brain function and cell metabolism, prevents infections and promotes cell health and red blood cell growth. Lack of Vitamin B might put you into risk for leptospirosis and viral fever. Sources –Whole grains, meats, eggs, beans, lentils, dark & leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, bananas, etc.
Dynamic Vitamin D
This was the fourth vitamin to be named. Amazingly, it was discovered when scientists were hunting for a cure for rickets (soft bones) in dogs. But friends, what about us? Well, our body needs it to help absorb calcium and promote bone growth. You see, lack of it could result in soft bones in kids or fragile bones in adults. You can prevent flu, dengue, TB, HIV and asthma, because Vitamin D plays an important part in the immune system and help prevent viral infections. Sources – Cheese, egg yolk, fatty fish like tuna, mackerel & salmon, mushrooms, soya beans, etc.
So, you’ve realized we’ve become victims of a two-fold problem, one is the environment created for the spread of diseases and two, lack of proper nutrition in our diet, to reduce immunity. This makes us patients of monsoon-related diseases. But we have our vitamins to save us. Yet, there’s a slight problem. Granted, vitamins come to us in all our foods, but do they reach us in their pristine form? No. You see, the way our fruits/vegetables/meats are transported, frozen, fried and finally so intensely cooked, all vitamins are destroyed even before they reach our plate. One example is that delicious pav-bhaji that is so fried, smashed, buttered and served, that every living nutrient in it has said its last prayers. So, pray, where do we go for our vitamins?
Help is at hand in those wonderful saviours called supplements. Here’s something about them –
A regular diet, together with supplements that come with the necessary vitamins, provide your body with the necessary micronutrients.
Supplements fill in the lack of vitamins in your body, which your food does not provide.But let me correct you… supplements are not an alternative to regular food.
Have your regular food, in regular amounts, along with the right supplements.
So, you’ve got not only the problem, but a solution!
Take help from these supplements to ensure that your body stays healthy and strong enough to prevent any illness, every season, from summer to winter, through monsoon!
Stay healthy, wealthy and wow!
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