For some of you 22 degrees is a cinch (and I am envious of you all) but I have been fortunate enough to have lived three years of my life in Los Angeles and the rest of my life in the suburbs of New Jersey and Connecticut, where, sure! It gets really cold, but I have almost always had a car with seat warmers, or at the very least, internal temperature control!
Look at this little guy. He looks a little down, eh?
I spent the weekend in New York City. A place that I hope to call home, soon. However, I question my sanity– 22 degrees and it feels like 6? I am wondering how I ever managed to spend winter in negative-degree, Connecticut weather? It must have been the car and sheer determination.
For many, including myself, a drop in temperature can mean a change in behavior. Perhaps, you do not want to leave the house as much and thus, can become socially withdrawn. You might feel lonely or down. Weight gain and lack of energy may be an issue. S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) can be rough and as the temperature decreases, it is more likely that are bodies are going to start gravitating towards “comfort foods.” I can become an eating machine.
Hang in there! As someone who suffers from some form of S.A.D., here are a few of my tips for staying warm, happy, and healthy without having to reach for that late night bag of potato chips.
1. Take a warm bath. Add bubbles and light a candle to make it different from an “ordinary” bath.
2. Enjoy a caffeine-free, herbal tea. I personally like the warming Yogi tea: Classic India Spice. Add a tbsp of raw honey or NuNaturals brand Stevia.
Visit yogiproducts.com for more delicious varieties.
3. Increase your heart rate. You do not need to go to the gym, but do some jumping jacks or rebound on a miniature trampoline. Increasing your heart rate circulates more oxygen to the tissues and it can increase your energy, mood and raise your internal body temperature. (Sometimes I make myself go to the gym just to warm up my body- it works!).
4. Refrain from pouring that extra glass of wine. I am a regular offender, but truth be told, not only does alcohol lower body temperature, but it also lowers your inhibitions, and… all of a sudden that warm chocolate torte is looking pretty darn delicious.
I love red wine during the winter but sometimes it can be very easy to fill... and refill the glass during the colder months
5. Enjoy a warm but satisfying and nutritious meal. (Pictures to come). Comfort food does not need to be pizza or chocolate chip cookies. I love slicing up squash and zucchini and steaming them in a vegetable broth (with garlic) right on the stove top. I then drench them in my favorite piping hot, marinara sauce and sprinkle on raw goat cheese. I like using squash because it is very starchy and imitates pasta. The veggie broth ads more flavor than water. For those of you that enjoy grains, I like Eden Foods, Kamut Pasta.
6. Have a gathering at your place. In order to keep my mood elevated, I need to be around people. However, I am on a tight budget. I suggest buying two bottles of inexpensive but nice wine. Ask guests to bring their own favorite. Break out the CLUE, Scrabble, and Pictionary. Offer a simple but healthy snack. Fresh guacamole is filling and delicious. Try one of Whitney at Lettuce Love’s wonderful guacamole recipes. Serve it with organic carrots and/or Blue corn tortilla chips, for dipping.
My wine suggestions: Rich and buttery Chardonnay: Chateau St. Jean, aprx: $9.99 Full Bodied Cabernet Sauvignon: Snap Dragon, aprx: $7.99
7. Dark Chocolate for dessert. I love the organic Dagoba dark chocolate in Concada. It is 73% cocoa and provides closure to my meal. I carry it around in my purse so that I never feel like I am missing out at the dessert table. World Wide Chocolate is offering 10% off any size order when you enter promo code: santa10 at checkout!!
What keeps you happy and healthy during the dark, cold months? Does anyone have any suggestions?
Recently, I have found myself absorbed in the holidays and having more sugar, salts and wine than normal. It is for this reason, I believe, I have developed a stuffy nose. Today marks Day 1 of my “detox” from all things sugar. Follow me for four and a half days as I keep busy and try the Candida-Free Diet plan… (I shall explain more about this tomorrow).
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