Food Therapy: Eating for Winter

Posted by on Jan 16, 2012 in Blog | No Comments

Winter is a time for rest and introspection. Slowing down in the winter allows the body to rejuvenate and consolidate energy for the active months of spring and summer. Because you can’t skip school or work to sleep and meditate all day, the foods you eat during the winter are especially important to the quality of your health. Here are some winter eating tips to help keep you healthy and happy into spring.

Best Winter Foods Foods have energetic temperatures.  For instance, cucumber and watermelon cool the body, and hot peppers make us sweat. Here are some foods to gently warm your body, from the inside out:

  • Cinnamon, ginger, aniseed, cloves
  • Oats and millet
  • Fennel
  • Leeks
  • Lentils
  • Lamb, beef, poultry, duck, venison
  • Root vegetables like beets, carrots, yams, sweet potatoes, parsnips
  • Smoked fish, lobster, salmon, tuna, prawns, oysters

Avoid raw food It is widely believed that salads are always a healthy choice. But in the wintertime, raw vegetables are too cold for your body and can hinder digestion. When your digestion is compromised, you absorb nutrients less efficiently, which can lower your energy level, mood, and immunity. Luckily, wintertime brings an abundance of delicious vegetables that are wonderful cooked. Root vegetables, such as beets and parsnips, as well as squash, are excellent roasted in the oven. Dark leafy greens, like kale and collards, are easy to cook up in a little vinegar with black eyed peas, beans, or beef.

Warm it up Drink fluids and eat foods that are physically warm. Soups and warm teas are ideal winter foods. The body breaks food down by heating it up; thus, chilled foods take more energy to digest. If you are eating something that is coming out of the fridge, heat it up or wait for it to get to room temperature. If you really need a sweet treat, have a warm slice of pie and hold the ice cream.

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