Chaas - the best drink for summers.
Is summer making you tired and dehydrated? Do you find yourself wondering if there’s a healthy alternative to soft drinks, which will refresh you and boost your health too? Look no further than your own kitchen where you can make yourself a glass of buttermilk in no time. Buttermilk is popular in many countries around the world - be it a hot or cold nation. The method to make buttermilk and the garnishings may differ from place to place, but the basic ingredients - curd and water remain the same.
In India, Buttermilk has been the drink of choice since time immemorial. In ancient Sanskrit literature, it was referred to as “Takra” or nectar of the Gods and Goddesses. It is a Sattvic food and Ayurveda recommends it both to maintain health and to treat diseases. Traditionally, buttermilk was the liquid left over after churning butter. The buttermilk available now is churned and watered down curd garnished with various spices.
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What are the benefits of drinking chaas (Buttermilk)?
#1. Cools down the body temperature in summer:
Buttermilk has amazing cooling properties. A glass of buttermilk in summer brings down the body’s temperature. It is also known to help bring relief to menopausal women experiencing hot flushes.
#2. Prevents dehydration:
Buttermilk which is salt, water, and curd all blended together is loaded with electrolytes. This makes it a perfect drink for a hot summer’s day as it helps maintains the fluid and electrolyte levels in the body.
#3. Healthy Gut:
Buttermilk being a curd based drink, is full of probiotics. Probiotics are essential for regulating the healthy bacteria in your gut. Research is increasingly linking the importance of a healthy gut to a person’s overall health including the digestive system, immune system, and hormones.
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#4. Aids digestion:
Feeling too full after a heavy meal, feel the pangs of acidity coming on? Buttermilk is the perfect drink for you to wash down your meal and avoid acidity too. It’s not just the buttermilk but the spices added to it like asafoetida (hing), cumin (jeera), ginger which act as great digestives.
#5. Prevents vitamin and mineral deficiency:
Buttermilk is a great source of Vitamin B complex (riboflavin), potassium, and proteins. Riboflavin especially is essential for converting food to energy. So, drink a daily glass of buttermilk to avoid any vitamin deficiency.
#6. Helps in weight loss:
Buttermilk provides you all the benefits of milk - calcium, minerals, and vitamins without the fat. A glass of buttermilk will also give you the feeling of being full and satisfied. If you are watching your calories, buttermilk is the perfect drink for you.
#7. Can be given to lactose intolerant children and adults:
A large number of kids and adults are diagnosed as lactose intolerant. Parents of kids especially worry about them becoming calcium deficient in the absence of drinking milk. In these cases, buttermilk is the perfect and tasty replacement for milk to meet the calcium requirements.
#8. Lowers cholesterol and blood pressure:
Research has indicated that Milk Fat Globule Membrane (MFGM) found in buttermilk is a bioactive protein which has cholesterol-lowering and blood pressure lowering properties. You need to drink one glass of buttermilk a day to reap these benefits.
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#9. Eases Constipation:
Buttermilk reduces bloating in the stomach, prevents stomach ailments and aids in relieving constipation. To relieve constipation and aid bowel movement, you need to drink a glass of buttermilk on empty stomach every morning.
Healthy and glowing skin: Is the summer heat making your skin oily and dull? A glass of buttermilk can be the perfect drink for you. The lactic acid and alpha hydraulic acid (AHA) in buttermilk helps restore summer skin. Not just that, the acidic and astringent nature of buttermilk make it a perfect face pack (without salt or spices) for brightening and tightening skin.
Easy chaas recipe
Traditionally buttermilk was the derivative of the process of making butter. It was the watery liquid left behind after milk was churned into butter and is still made this way in many traditional households.
What is available these days as buttermilk is churned yogurt made thinner by adding water.
- 2 tablespoons of yogurt.
- Cold water
- Salt to taste
- Pinch of spices like jeera, black salt and hing
- Garnishing of choice
- Churn all the ingredients to a smooth consistency.
- Adding more cold water to get the desired consistency.
- Add salt to taste and garnishing of choice and enjoy!!
A variety of garnishing can be added to enhance the taste and make it more beneficial. These include:
- Roasted cumin
- Rock salt / Black salt
- Black pepper
- Grated ginger
- Chopped coriander leaves
- Mint leaves
- Chopped green chillies
- Curry leaves
This time when summer beats you down, put down the glass of aerated drink and pick up a glass of natural, goodness filled buttermilk instead. Not only will you feel immediately refreshed, your body will be restored and rejuvenated too.
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