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Eat Right: Complete guide to summer diet for kids

“Avoiding unhealthy foods and protection from heat is the health mantra for children during summer,” a doctor says



As the summer heat increases, it is time to adjust children’s diets to ensure they stay cool, energised, and properly nourished during the sweltering months. To keep them protected from illnesses, parents must prioritise hydration and choose foods that offer essential nutrients to support their growth and development. Let us explore the best practices for crafting a summer diet for kids, focusing on refreshing beverages, hydrating fruits and vegetables, and nutritious snacks that will keep them active, healthy, and happy throughout the season.

Keep spicy foods at bay

Spicy foods may tempt children, but they can lead to dehydration and acidity during the summer. Dr Shiva Khurana, a child specialist at Max Hospital, Saket, whose child studies at Apeejay Rhythms Kinderworld, Greater Kailash, advises parents to limit their child’s intake of spicy foods. If your child enjoys spicy dishes, balance them with cooling foods like mint, cucumber, coconut water, and yogurt. These refreshing foods will help combat the heat and prevent any potential digestive discomfort.

Bid adieu to unhealthy foods

“Avoiding unhealthy foods and protection from heat is the health mantra for children during summer,” Dr Khurana asserts. Fried snacks, sugary treats, and carbonated beverages can exacerbate dehydration and drain energy levels. Instead, opt for nourishing alternatives like fresh fruits, vegetables, and homemade snacks. Healthy eating habits not only promote overall well-being but also provide the necessary nutrients for growth and development.

Also Read: How to protect your child from common summer illnesses

Embrace hydration

In the scorching summer heat, dehydration is a significant concern. To combat this, ensure that your child drinks an ample amount of water throughout the day. Additionally, incorporate hydrating fruits into their diet. Dr Khurana recommends eating watermelon, muskmelon, oranges, pineapples, strawberries, and mangoes, which are excellent choices due to their high-water content. You can also offer coconut water, yogurt, and refreshing mango shakes to keep them hydrated and refreshed.

Sleep and Diet-the dynamic duo

Adequate sleep is often overlooked but plays a vital role in a child’s overall well-being. During the summer, it is important to establish a consistent sleep schedule for your child. Sufficient sleep helps in maintaining energy levels, boosting immunity, and improving cognitive functions. Combine proper sleep with a balanced diet to provide your child with the necessary fuel for a vibrant summer.

Emphasise energy-boosting foods

Dr Khurana advises avoiding energy-draining foods, such as caffeinated drinks like coffee, tea, and energy drinks. Although these beverages may provide temporary alertness, they can lead to dehydration and fatigue. Instead, focus on energy-boosting foods that are rich in essential vitamins and minerals. Encourage your child to indulge in a variety of fresh fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, and dairy products to fuel their active summer days.

By following these summer diet tips, we can ensure that our little ones stay cool, hydrated, and full of energy. 

Disha Roy Choudhury is a Principal Correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. She has worked as a journalist at different media organisations. She is also passionate about music and has participated in reality shows.