Dramatic changes in circulation by late spring help your body adapt to the brutal summer sun. A red, flushed face on a hot mid-summer afternoon reveals how your body keeps cool - by circulating more blood close to your skin. More blood in your skin means you radiate more heat away and encourage evaporation of sweat.
Heat also increases your heart rate, bringing with it courage, boldness, and a sense of summer adventure. It also relaxes your muscles, which feel heavy during the dog days of summer. Dilation of blood vessels lowers blood pressure and causes swelling in the hands and feet on warm days.
Sweat: Water or Blood?
Although sweat cools the body, it depletes vital fluids, making dehydration a serious concern this time of year. But sweat is more than mere water. It also contains electrolytes and oils, and is more like blood plasma. That's why Ayurveda equates sweating to bleeding. While summer sweat is inevitable, it shouldn't be encouraged.
As it depletes electrolytes, the summer sun withers your strength. Electrolyte loss causes fatigue and eventually muscle spasms. Leg cramps, often called "charlie horses" is a common sign of low electrolyte/potassium levels. A pounding headache may accompany your fatigue and the feeling that you've been cooked beneath the summer sun.
You can prevent dehydration by paying attention to your tongue: a dry tongue or palate is one of the first signs of dehydration. When fluid loss is sufficient to dry up saliva, stomach glands are also too dry to produce the 2/3's of a liter of hydrochloric acid necessary for digestion.
Refresh, Replenish & Keep Cool
Apples, bananas and limes are juicy. They replenish electrolytes and restore energy after sweating or whenever muscles are tired in the afternoon. Bananas are especially high in potassium and also contain Tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin, known as the "happy and relaxed" hormone.
Apples, bananas, and limes are also refreshing. They cool the blood. The sourness
of apples and limes gently releases bile from the liver. Since bile is a hot and oily substance, its release reduces general irritation and inflammation in the body. Apples are crunchy and leave a rough feeling on the roof of the mouth, both signs of astringency
. Astringency tightens and tones tissues that are loose and lax from hot summer day
Light for Summer Digestion
When too much blood moves into the skin, there is less blood in the chest and abdominal organs. Reduced blood supply to digestive organs causes appetite to wane by summer. You might also have acid reflux, or other signs of indigestion. Lime and ginger coax blood back to GI tract, stimulating appetite and digestion. Whereas oatmeal may be too heavy for breakfast this time of year, an apple and banana smoothie in the morning provides fiber without heaviness.
On hot & lazy summer mornings, start your day with a refreshing, thirst quenching breakfast that replenishes your strength and vitality.
This delicious smoothie is loved by kids and adults alike, and it's easy enough to blend up when friends and neighbors drop by. It's ideal for breakfast or to replenish electrolytes during an afternoon lull. Best of all, it's dairy and ice-free.
Peel, core and chop a raw apple. Peel the skin from the fresh ginger by scraping it with a knife. Select a banana that is ripe but not too soft. Under ripe bananas are too grainy for smoothies. Add with remaining ingredients and 1c water into a blender and puree. You may also substitute 1/4 tsp ground ginger for 1/2 inch fresh ginger root.
All freshly blended raw drinks are best consumed immediately. They lose a great deal of their antioxidant power after about 30 minutes. Fruits in general should be eaten on an empty stomach and at least a half hour before a snack or meal.
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(4.00 out of 5 stars) 5 reviews
Juice the lime or use the pulp?
- Kay, Birmingham, AL, 06-22-11
May I please have the nutritional guide for this recipe, if available?
- Joyce, Forty fort, PA, 06-22-11
You may use the pulp as well.
Can I substitute coconut water for plain water
- Leah Willis, Cleveland heights, OH, 04-25-12
Are apples ok to use for Vata constitution or can I substitute. If apples are ok, what type is best?
- deb loftus, Leechburg, PA, 06-23-12
Boy, am I glad to have this recipe! I wish I had known about it last year - I was seriously dehydrated and suffered from heat exhaustion during a brutal NYC summer. Thanks, John!
I love this website and all of the vital information it provides.
I can't digest raw apple. Can Applesauce be substituted?
I thought combining bananas was a no no? I'm not sure where I read that.
- jade, Paris, 04-25-14
Susan....of course you can. Experiment....noting is written in stone. :)
- David McKaig, Asheville, NC, 04-28-14
Not a no no here.....see how you feel.
- David McKaig, Asheville, NC, 04-28-14
This was a great start to the morning for me and even rib-sticking, considering there's no dairy or other protein source. I may try substituting cardamom for ginger next time. The combination of lime and ginger was slightly burning to my ulcer.
Good stuff! Refreshing and surprisingly filling.