Winter is a unique season. Where the other three seasons have more mild weather at least at some point during the day, the cold temperatures of the winter months encourage us to stay indoors and rest up. And that is what winter is all about – rest!
This is the time of year to take it a bit easy, letting ourselves sleep more if needed and rest as needed too. It’s a great time for long evenings reading books and snuggling on the couch with our family.
Of course, just because it’s cold and dark outside for longer periods of time during the winter, that doesn’t mean that we should become couch potatoes! But for many, it’s a great time to choose more moderate exercise like swimming, walking, yoga, and so forth. Doing so lets our brains and bodies rest from the work and exertion of the other seasons throughout the year.
As far as eating during the winter, if you find yourself wanting warm soups, stews, potatoes and winter squashes, then you’re right in line with what will bring your body into balance. Favor naturally sweet foods like pumpkin, carrots, beets, potatoes, and winter squash to naturally warm up your body during the cold winter months.
Whatever the weather is doing outside, if we try to eat opposite to that, it will bring us into balance. So when it’s cold and dry (even with snow, it’s dry because of the cooler temps!) it’s not the best time to be eating large amounts of crackers, chips, sandwiches, etc. because they are also so dry.
Sipping on warm water and enjoying herbal teas is also great this time of year as it will keep you warm from the inside too. Speaking of staying warm, keeping your body warm this time of year will help you feel better for the remainder of that year – yes, it’s that important! If we allow our bodies to get too cold, it will in essence “cool” our digestion down, affecting our ability to digest throughout the year. If you already struggle with digestion, keeping yourself warm inside and out is a must for your healing!
I’ve become fascinated with season living and eating since starting to learn about and study the ancient traditions of yoga, Ayurveda, and Traditional Chinese Medicine. These Eastern philosophies have helped people thrive for thousands of years. So many, including me, have struggled in our modern, fast-paced world with our health and well-being. I believe there are wise tools in these ancient traditions as we strive to find healing, balance, and wellness. 🙂