As the temperature starts to drop over late autumn and winter, here are a few tips and practices to help keep you warm from the inside out.
Drink warm water with lemon and / or ginger
The warm water will heat you up. The lemon and ginger warms up your digestive process.
Have foods and drinks with warming spices
Warming spices heat you from within. See my previous article on this here.
Do warming breathing techniques
Tum mo breathing
An ancient breathwork technique practiced by Tibetan Buddhist monks, which means inner fire. It’s a specific breathing pattern done whilst visualising a flame going up your spine and studies have shown it can raise body temperature. See how to do it here.
Breath of fire
This involves forcefully breathing out through the nose whist pulling your navel in towards your spine. It helps invoke the solar plexus chakra - associated with the digestive and metabolic processes so similar to lemon and ginger, it warms up these process so you can function optimally. See how to do it here.
Do a warming meditation
Trataka or candle gazing meditation is an Ayurvedic meditation technique which incorporates the warming element of fire. Light a candle and softly gaze at the flame, trying not to blink. Start with a few minutes per session and work your way up to about 15.
Start a ritual of self massage
Massage increases lymphatic flow to help eliminate toxins from your body and boost immunity.
How to do
Perform before a bath or shower (am or pm) as the warm water helps the oil absorb into your skin.
Select and warm your oil: sesame, almond, jojoba, olive, coconut, sunflower or grape seed. Warm it by placing a small amount in a bowl and then resting this bowl for a few minutes over a larger one filled with boiling water. Add a few drops of your favourite essential oil if you like.
Start with massaging your head like you’re washing your hair.
Next your face: stroke down your face with your full hand, circle your temples and around your eyes with two fingers, swipe across your forehead and lips and finish by stroking down your face. Massage your ear lobes and around your outer ears.
Use sweeping strokes up from your hands and feet along your arms and legs toward the centre of your body. Use circular movements around your joints.
Do clockwise circular movements on your stomach.
Do clockwise and counterclockwise movements on your chest.
For your hands, stroke up and down your palms, around your wrist joints and massage between each finger. Then gently tug each finger. Similarly, for your feet, stroke up and down your soles, around your ankle joints and heels and massage between your toes. Then gently tug each toe.
Now bath or shower.
Commit to doing this several times a week or daily over the season.
Exercise of any sort is a good way to warm up. The best exercise is the one that you will do so just choose anything from walking, to dancing, to yoga, to a team sport etc. Walking when the sun is out is also a good way to soak up it’s warmth and light.
Always seek qualified practitioners before undertaking a new diet or exercise regime and always check with your doctor for any interactions with current medication.