For anyone who has lived here in Vista during the summer, you know it can get hot here in Southern California. And on the hottest summer days, it can almost feel too hot to eat, let alone slave away in a tasty kitchen to feed the family. One of the easiest ways to get around the issue of cooking when it’s too hot is to plan nights out to visit a local restaurant with air conditioning or a patio with a good breeze. Whether you choose to eat out every night or save the restaurant for date night, your food choices can also help you stay cool. Going out or staying in, keep these tips in mind for keeping cool with food this summer:

Heavy vs Light

During the middle of winter, the idea of a hearty stew probably seems like the best idea (whether or not there’s snow on the ground). The thick rich concoction is full of hearty, filling components and retains heat well, so it warms you as you eat and sticks around to give your body the energy to keep warm. So, with that in mind, it’s no wonder we tend to eat more salads and avoid the thick stews once temperatures start to rise. Trying to combat the heat is great, and as an added bonus, many of the foods we tend to gravitate toward in the summer are healthier options! During the summer, help your body stay cool by choosing lighter options: go for the grilled chicken salad instead of a heavier chicken parmesan, the fish entree instead of beef, or choose a pasta with pesto or herbs and olive oil rather than marinara or alfredo. These easy lighter options won’t weigh you down and leave you feeling full and hot for quite as long.

Choose Spice

That’s right, go for the extra-hot salsa or the face melting wings if you want to cool down on a hot summer day. It probably seems illogical; spicy foods generally make us feel hotter, not cooler. In this case, however, that’s entirely the point. Where heavy foods just weigh you down and make you feel the heat, they don’t affect your internal temperature as much as it feels like; on the other hand, spicy foods actually increase your internal temperature. Initially, this will make you feel hotter, as you’ve probably realized if you’ve ever eaten something spicy. However, when your internal body temperature rises, your blood circulation increases and your body starts producing more sweat. And, as any high school health class can tell you, our bodies sweat to help us cool down. So, while you’ll get that initial rush of heat from the spice, your body is working to cool you down.

When you need a night out, away from your hot kitchen, come visit Vista Village Pub. Our restaurant menu has light options to help you feel cool, and plenty of spicy options to help you sweat away the heat. Contact us today for more information or to reserve your table!