The Malayalam Calender has a month by name Karkitaka which falls from mid July to August. Karkitakam brings with it the first showers of the year after a stinging and nerve racking summer. But even the fresh rain are at disadvantage because they tamper with ones health. Low immunity of the body plays host to ailments and illness and this negative factor needs to be taken care of to enjoy the essence of each raindrop to fullest.
Diet plays an emminent role in building up of immunity and sustainance against diseases. In kerala ayurveda
herbs and plants of medicinal value are found and used in abundance. A vegetarian diet is recommended for this season by ayurveda practitioners. Spinach, colocasia leaves and stem and other such greens are used commonly. Fresh grated coconut is added im mostly all dishes. But drumstick leaves which is an inevitable green used in Kerala cuisine is avoided during monsoon due to heavy lose of Vitamin A with exposure to rain. But drumsticks are not a taboo.
As most of the diseases are water-borne such as Hepatitis A, cholera, diarrhoea, utmost caution is to be taken about the drinking water. The water should be boiled to its boiling point and kept in an enclosed jug after cooling. Ayurveda prescribes certain herbs like holy basil, cumin seeds, coriander seeds to be added to water for medicinal and healing effect. In ayurveda, a medicated gruel, marunnu kanji is prescribed as an effective drug and diet in Karkitaka Chikitsa.