Everyone looks forward to the season we all love – summer! It is a season for rest and recreation. It is the best time to have fun in the sun, enjoy recreation and sports activities or simply indulge in favorite foods.
Foods that we truly enjoy during summer are the tropical fruits, such as ripe or green mangoes, papaya, chico, pineapple, melon and watermelon, among others. Fruits should be a regular part of our diet. Fruits provide vitamins and minerals needed in the improvement of the body’s immune system. Just like vegetables, fruits also provide dietary fiber that helps regulate bowel movement, thus preventing constipation which is a common problem to some people, particularly among elderly and pregnant women. They also play a role in the prevention and control of certain diseases like cancer and coronary heart disease.
Fruits have natural unique tastes and sweetness that most people like. There are many ways by which they can be prepared and truly enjoyed. Some can be eaten as whole, sliced and used as topping for cakes and pastries, or salads. Some can be chopped or blended to make refreshing drinks, such as fruit shakes and juices, which can be sources of additional fluids that our body needs during summer.
In these times of economic difficulties, many people have learned to forego things that are not their priorities. Fruits on the table to some people are luxury. Despite the delightful taste and the benefits they provide, some people do not avail of fruits because of budget limitations. Expenses should be prioritized according to needs, and fruits are additional expense, so to speak.
However, there are actually more fruits to enjoy during summer! Aside from being abundant at this time of year, their prices are relatively cheaper than in any other months. If we only take advantage of buying and eating fruits during summer, we can also enjoy the health and nutritional benefits of fruits to the maximum! More importantly, we follow message #3 of the 2012 Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos which recommends eating of more vegetables and fruits everyday to get the essential vitamins, mineral and fiber for regulation of body processes. So, why not take a double dose of fruit treats this summer?
Here is a delightful and satisfying concoction that will surely be a refreshing treat for everyone!
pcs banana, medium-sized, lacatan, sliced
2 pcs mangoes, medium-sized kalabaw, ripe, scooped into balls
2 cups melon, scooped into balls
2 cups papaya, ripe scooped into balls
1 cup pineapple, tidbits, slightly boiled in syrup
2 cups watermelon, scooped into balls
2 tablespoon calamansi juice
syrup to cover fruits
Prepare thick syrup by boiling 1cup sugar and 1 cup water. Cool, set aside. Mix fruits gently. Add syrup and ice cubes to chill. Serve cold.