JustHaving trouble with cold fingers and toes when you're out these cold winter days; or do you simply experience those moments when a chill from drafts in the house cause you to shiver and turn the thermostat up a degree? Do you know that there are some spices that you can add to your food that will help your body maintain it's core temperature?
All the incredible and tasty Eastern spices like cinnamon, cloves, tumeric, ginger, fennugreek and others actually increase body temperature naturally and are great to have around the house any time, but especially during cold winter months.
Many of these spices are able to expand capillaries (small blood vessels) in the body to allow oxygen and thus energy, producing heat. These "warmer" spices can be taken in tea, capsule or tincture form or just added to meals for seasonings. Just remember to buy fresh, good quality spices. They also have great immune building properties of their own and are just another example of how your food can be your sustaining medicine. I encourage you to taste and explore the many flavors and uses of these wonderful spices. Many recipes can be found online.
I love to do things like sprinkle my morning yogurt with cloves or cinnamon or even my morning coffee. There is a drink that can be made with tumeric and ginger called golden milk that is simple delightful and non-caffeinated. Try adding a sprinkle of cayenne to your favorite dark hot chocolate.
When we go skiing here in Vermont on cold days, we have some tricks to keep us going. Drinking a shot of an eighth of a teaspoon of cayenne pepper in a small glass of water a few minutes before you go out will establish a nice warming sensation as it opens up the capillaries in your extremities. As your body is active, the warmth circulates through your blood stream and increases your body's warming capacity. Try it some day before you go out for a walk in the snow. You'll be pleasantly surprised.
New Year's greetings!! There are exciting times ahead of us and plenty of opportunities to use our creative juices to help folks get well and stay well. As teachers and students at Healing Leaves Center come together to brainstorm in the next few weeks, there will be more ideas and projects that we can choose from than we will be able to accomplish. At the same time in the synergy of working together, we will be able to come up with the best we have to offer. As the Director, that is exciting for me. As part of our online community, I want to remind you that you are part of who we are and what we become. So feel free to offer any observations or ideas for consideration in this next year. Just because we haven't done it yet, doesn't mean it's beyond the realm of our accomplishing it.
A few things that I can say will continue to take place are the Intermittent Fasting and Fat Burning Protocol coaching; mini video series on "The New Millennial Diet" and other herbally centered topics both in video format and hands on in person. We will have more topics and information in the next month's blog as we meet together.
Meantime, the plant and seed catalogs are already coming in. Here in Vermont it's in the single digits and very snowy. This is a good time to plan ahead for garden space, tools, supplies, layout, soil, and most importantly, the seeds or plants you want to establish. Vegetables gardens are always fun and the old Victory Garden of WWII fame may just be an important part of your yard, whether formal veggie space or small raised beds. As the threat to our food sources becomes more questionable and expensive; it may be more beneficial to grow, preserve and provide the freshest, nutritionally viable foods right in your back yard. Grow and preserve the things you use the most throughout the year and you won't have to wonder where you might find them come the next winter season.
Growing culinary and medicinal herbs in your backyard can be just as satisfying and secure. There are many that are easy to grow in good average soil and can provide your "go to" in emergencies. Plants like Echinacea (purple cone flower), lemon balm, oregano, sage, thyme, parsley, rosemary, valerian, scullcap, nettle, comfrey, peppermint, raspberry, horseradish can be used in small spaces, integrated into perennial beds, as well as your garden plot. The first goal, if you're just starting out is finding the ones that address some of your family's general health issues and start growing those. You will be relieved to have them on hand when a health issue comes up and not have to run to the local pharmacy or health food store. It's fun, it's easy and it saves time and money. We at Healing Leaves Center are all about teaching lay people to help themselves. If there are specific herbs you are interested in learning about, whether growing or preparation, we are interested in hearing from you so that we can provide the information you need to become self sufficient.
So here's a hearty cheers to the New Year and all that can be accomplished together!
Over 40 years of Herbal and nutritional experience.