With winter upon us, now is the time to start looking at your daily routine. With the change in season and temperature it is important to change our drinking, eating and bathing habits. Below are some helpful tips for surviving the colder months, from certified clinical naturpath Kush Vatchha.
Drinking plenty of water in winter is just as important as in the warmer months to ensure our kidneys work efficiently. Warmer temperatures inside your house and car, wearing extra layers of clothing and engaging in winter sports means your body is still sweating and if you don’t get enough fluids it can lead to under hydration. We also lose water vapour through our breath (that steam that comes out of your mouth on a cold day). Eat plenty of winter fruits and vegetables, as they are a natural source of water as well as drinking fluids such as warm water with lemon or clear soups.
There is a reason nature outputs certain fruits and vegetables in a particular season. By eating fruit or vegetables at their prime time you’re getting them when they’re at their seasonal best. There is no nutritional value in eating foods that have been sitting in cold storage for months. By eating seasonally your body gets the warming fruits and vegetables in winter, and in summer eat the fruits that will keep your body cool e.g. watermelon and strawberries. Buying at farmers markets or homegrown vegetables and herbs give you extra flavour, extra crunch, extra juiciness – all super-fresh and at great value prices. Home grown and organic is better as you do not have the pesticides that are harmful to your health.
Rotate your grains
Don’t just eat the same wheat-based products (breads, pasta/noodle, biscuits) day in and day out. Wheat is one of the most highly sprayed crops in the world and gluten, a substance found in wheat disagrees with some people. Shake up your eating habits by trying new types of gluten-free grains such as kamut, quinoa, millet, brown rice or buckwheat.
Add Garlic and Ginger to your diet
Most people avoid garlic because they are worried that they will end up smelling of it. Garlic is a natural antimicrobial, which has been used for many years to help treat the common cold and flu. Your immune system will benefit if you give it a daily boost of garlic. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties, adding a slice of fresh ginger with lemon and honey in a tea is very warming and helps with your digestion too.
Skin brush with a Loofah
When you perspire all the toxins that are eliminated from your body sit on your skin. Skin brushing stimulates the lymphatic system helping to release toxins. Lymphatic congestion is a major factor leading to inflammation and disease.