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Hot Off the Menu

An expert guide to hot weather food and drink faux Pas

21 July 2022 2minutes

Nutritional researcher Dr Torsten Bohn from the LIH’s NutriHealth Research Group gives his professional opinion on food and drink do’s and don’ts when the summer temperatures edge into the unpleasant.

It’s summer, it’s hot and unless you can afford to turn on the air conditioning in a time of soaring energy prices, that’s not going to change any time soon. What’s more, you’re probably slightly dehydrated. Even if you are not participating in an Ironman where you can lose 15 litres of water a day, a warm climate can easily result in water losses of 4 l a day. So what are the options for trying to keep cool as heatwaves and other extreme weather events look set to become more common features of our day-to-day lives?

One answer is perhaps not the most obvious, but could be a real game changer when it comes to meal times. Dr Torsten Bohn, group leader of the NutriHealth Group in the Department of Precision Health, has given his top tips in a comprehensive guide to hot weather eating and drinking published in the Luxemburger Wort.

The article entitled “Eating and drinking in the heat: Ten questions to an expert” not only covers the basics, such as how much water we need to be drinking, but the crucially important topics including whether a nice cold beer is a good idea and if a spicy curry can cool you down (the answer may surprise you). This isn’t just a list of commandments as is often the case with media ‘diet tips’, but gives a scientific basis drawing on Dr Bohn’s professional expertise in our bodily responses to food and drink.

It’s not just a question of ‘feel hot, eat cold’. The way we experience and regulate temperature draws on many different factors, from quantity and frequency of food and drink consumption to its caloric content. And this is before we even get into the chemistry of the food itself and how our bodies interact with it,

explains Dr Bohn.

So put down that ice-cold fruit juice and chuck away the isotonic sports drink (unless you’re in the middle of a triathlon). Get summer smart with your menu and take a look at some expert advice.

Scientific Contact

  • Torsten
    Group Leader, NutriHealth

    Department of Precision Health



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