Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Bit nippy out.


It's been a while! Happy 2013!

January is always a month of mixed feelings for me- a new year brings with it the urge for a fresh start and an opportunity to gather some perspective on life. It also brings more cold, grey, miserable weather which doesn't seem quite so festive post-Christmas.

I secretly revel in the chilly weather thought because I love making my surroundings super cosy with candles, blankets, fluffy socks and hot baths. So, I thought I'd do a quick post on how to warm up this winter...

• Munch on some garlic as it boosts circulation. If you don't like the taste (or smell!) then you can buy odourless garlic capsules from health food stores such as Holland & Barrett. Nature's Best do a good version which contains 2mg of Allicin per capsule- the property which gives garlic its amazing anti-bacterial and heart healthy properties. You can buy it here .

• Run the taps until the water is as hot as you can stand it and wash or rinse your hands, switch the water to as cold as you can handle, and then back to hot, then back to cold etc etc. This is more effective than simply holding your hands under the hot water for a few minutes because it causes blood to flow towards the hands and away again which, if done a few times, means that blood flow is increased without loosing too much heat to the surroundings.

• Take a nice hot bath. Although, body heat will be lost through the skin once you get out the bath or the water cools down, so wrap up after to minimise this.

• Brew up! A hot drink warms you from the inside-out but will cool you down in the long run because it raises your body's internal temperature which signals to the brain that you must need cooling down, which is what the body does.

• Eat. Eating revs your metabolism which warms you up when it is working hard. Although it's obvious enough to suggest that no one plops down on the sofa and scoffs down ten bags of Maltesers to warm up!

• Exercise! Exercise boosts your metabolism and gets your heart working harder as it tries to deliver oxygen to your lungs and muscles.

• Tensing the muscles in your hands and feet can increase blood flow to the area. Really tighten the muscles and hold for 5 seconds before relaxing them again. Stretching also directs warm blood to the area and so both stretching and tensing muscles will warm up your extremities! Repeat tensing/stretching and relaxing until you notice a difference.

So there's a few simple ideas to get you warm and hopefully keep you warm on this snowy January afternoon. Hope you find something useful here!

Until next time,