Herbs to have during monsoon to boost health & immunity

Gone are the days of scorching heat, bright sunny days and warm winds as we welcome the monsoon. Nature-nourishing showers, soothing cool breeze, washed green flora and cool mornings and evenings. But what the season also brings with it is a bundle of seasonal ailments. During this period, there is a major imbalance of our doshas, which is why Ayurveda recommends a seasonal purification or Panchakarma during the monsoon season. Environmental change profoundly impacts our body, immune system, strength and energy levels. Ayurveda recommends practices that help deal with these bodily ailments and dosha imbalance to maintain a healthy general well-being.

While the weather asks for a change in our wardrobe, there's a similar ingredient upgrade that our kitchens need too! Our diet and the monsoon food we eat plays a vital role in protecting us from various ailments, strengthening our immune system and keeping the monsoon woes at bay. We asked our in-house Ayurvedic Vaidyas to suggest monsoon health tips & some ingredients from our pantry to beat the monsoon flu. Read on to know more.

1. Ginger - Ginger is a wonder herb to incorporate into your daily diet during the monsoon season. It pacifies the aggravated Vata in the body, improves digestion that keeps you active, and improves overall blood circulation, preventing fever, sweating and chills. A great anti-bacterial and antiviral herb, Ginger helps deal with cold and flu, a common occurrence during the monsoon and simultaneously strengthens the immune system. Try to drink ginger tea once a day to utilise its benefits.

2. Garlic - Another superfood to include in your daily diet, Garlic is excellent for boosting immunity and metabolism. Its’ antioxidant properties reportedly increase the number of T-cells in your blood, thereby preventing flu and cold. The best way to have them is by adding them to your lentils and curries.

3. Mint - While it is advisable to stay away from greens during the monsoon, intake of Mint leaves is quite beneficial. Not only does it boost immunity, but it also relieves abdominal gas and bloating. Add mint leaves to make a cool drink, or use it in teas and salads to battle cold and flu.

4. Honey - A boon to those with weak digestion, Honey is an instant energy booster, improves digestion and provides natural relief for seasonal allergies such as sneezing, runny nose, cough, cold, and more. Drink it first thing in the morning with lemon juice and warm water to extract its benefits.

5. Turmeric - An age-old spice found in every kitchen, Turmeric is one of the best immunity boosters & keeps sore throat, flu, cold and cough at bay. Great for having throughout the year, add the spice to your daily curries or simply have turmeric milk before bed.

6. Tulsi - The sacred plant acts as a natural antibiotic and powerful antiseptic. It effectively fights germs, viruses and bacteria, keeping the immune system strong. As per Ayurveda, you can add a few leaves to your tea, drink a Tulsi concoction or simply swallow the leaves to avail its full benefits.

7. Ashwagandha - One of the most potent herbs to have during monsoon to pacify Vata dosha, Ashwagandha's rejuvenating properties boost immunity and fight against seasonal cough, cold and respiratory ailments. The herb promotes deep sleep, energy and stamina to beat the monsoon lethargy. Take it with lukewarm milk and honey at night for a good night's rest.

8. Triphala - A power-packed combination of Amla, Bibhitaki and Haritaki, these fruits have antioxidant properties along with vitamin A and C that are great for boosting immunity. With the humidity, our digestion process also slows down and thus, it is advised to have a spoonful of Triphala before your meals with water for better digestion. Triphala also helps in weight loss, enhancing vision and oral health.

9. Mulethi - Mulethi is another such herb that is beneficial to consume during the monsoon season. Wonderful to treat a sore throat and congestion, Mulethi also helps strengthen bones and muscles. Chew on a stick or boil it with your tea to benefit from its antibacterial properties.

10. Neem - Powered with exceptional antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant and medicinal properties, Neem is great for boosting immunity and balancing your Pitta dosha. Being a blood purifier, it keeps the skin clear, healthy and free from acne issues. Consume by crushing or directly boiling them in water and drinking the extract.

Monsoon food tends to rot more quickly because of bacteria and viruses in the moisture, so follow these monsoon health tips for a better and healthier you.

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