Tips and Secrets to Staying Healthy this Winter
The middle of our traditionally cold and frosty season is fast approaching, with the winter solstice just around the corner on 21st December. Here are six ways that will help you to stay healthy through out the season.
1. Keep your kidneys warm
From a Chinese medicine perspective, the kidneys are a very important organ and are one of the main generators of energy for the system. The kidneys are a yin organ associated with the water element; however the kidneys also need to maintain a good degree of warmth if you are to stay in optimum health.
Besides simply making sure you are well tucked in before you venture out into the brisk weather, you may also want to consider buying a kidney or lower back warmer to stave off the cold. Another good little trick you can apply to keep your kidneys warm is simply to avoid cold or icy drinks and instead opt for a hot drink. If your kidneys really need warming up then drinking parsley tea 3-4 times a week is a great help. To prepare this just get about a handful of dark green, curly parsley and chop it up well. Place it in a saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer for about 4 minutes then leave to steep for a further 5 minutes. Strain and drink.
Parsley tea is easy to make and pleasant to the taste. It will not only help to warm your kidneys but it will also mildly detox and nourish them as well.
2. Early to bed, early to rise
According to ancient Chinese traditions, we humans are supposed to live in accordance with the seasons. So this means that as the sun is going down earlier, so too should our head hit the pillow at a more reasonable hour. Although this may be a bit annoying for night owls, the good news is you will feel far more refreshed and have improved energy levels once this habit is firmly established in your routine.
3. Vitamin D
Experts now say that it is highly advisable to be taking a vitamin D supplement through the winter months. Our main source of vitamin D is from the sun but due to greater cloud coverage at this time in the UK researchers have found that an alarmingly high proportion of the population are suffering from vitamin D deficiency.
So if you are suffering from low energy, aching joints, tired and weak muscles or maybe having difficulty concentrating then book yourself in with your GP for a vitamin D test. They will get the results back to you within a week and advise a suitable dosage for you to take. If your symptoms are due to vitamin D deficiency then you will notice an extremely quick turn around in your symptoms once you start taking the correct dose for you.
4. Eat warming foods
This is kind of obvious, but if you are constantly eating cold or raw foods in the winter months then it will be much harder for your body to stay warm. Besides this, your body will also need to kick into overdrive to help warm the food in your stomach, which can be taxing on your energy stores over time.
5. Give your immune system a boost
If you are suffering from the traditional colds and flu this year or finding yourself with a recurrence of this common ailment then you may need to give your immune system an extra boost. A mulit vitamin is always great; however research has shown that increasing the dosage of vitamin C does not really help you to get rid of a cold once you have it.
6. Of course, have some acupuncture!
We wouldn’t be doing our cause justice without mentioning this! Yes of course, regular acupuncture is also a great way to keep your body healthy and your immune system strong. Originally, acupuncture was first used as a means of preventative medicine due to its effectiveness in maintaining optimal health and well being.
An experienced practitioner is able to tell the state of your overall health and detect potential imbalances that could be likely to occur before they manifest with symptoms. This way, a skilled acupuncturist can help to keep you healthy and assist your body to change with the seasons, making it far less likely you will fall ill in the winter months.
If you are wanting to book an appointment with an acupuncturist or if you would like to talk to a practitioner for advice then please click here for more details.