There are lots of ways that we can stay warm during the cold, blustery winter... the key is a multi-pronged approach. We need to look at maintaining heat as well as building heat from both the inside out as well as from the outside in. Here are some tips...
First (for optimal heat this weekend) Jump up and down and wave your arms in the air while loudly singing the following "Fly Eagles Fly, On the Road to Victory...E.A.G.L.E.S, Go Eagles!!!!!"
Next: Warming from the Outside in... Keep your 'heating vents' covered... your wrist & ankles, head and chest. These are the areas of the body where we lose the most heat. Staying covered with natural fibers (wool, cashmere, silk) can help hold the heat in.
Warming from the inside out: Activate your Surya Nadi (warming energy channel) by breathing through your right nostril. Gently seal the left nostril with your left thumb and breath through your right for up to 5 minutes.
Increase internal agni (fire) though warm food and drink...
- Cut a knob of ginger and simmer it in water. Keep this on the stove (replenishing water as it gets low) for a week at a time. Use this spicy water as a base for tea (add tea bag, milk, honey, lemon, etc), use this as a base for soup or as a warming liquid for reheating leftovers.
- Add black pepper, turmeric, chili powder, mustard powder and other warming spices to your food.
-Reduce salt intake (salt has a cooling effect as it holds water in the body).
To both warm and hydrate the whole body, make a Vata Salve for the soles of your feet before bed : Blend ghee, turmeric, fresh ginger, cloves, basil & orange peel to create paste.... may make your feet yellow - but they will be warm, yellow feet ;)
Warm your Spirit - The other day I sat down with a yellow pad (in front of a fire - which helped!) to write a letter to a dear friend.
I had forgotten what a soothing, warming feeling we get when we open ourselves up to connection in that way. The process of handwritten a letter encouraged me to express myself in a way that a screen simply does not. It warmed my heart amd soul.. and that is when we REALLY feel 'toasted up'. So I strongly recommend, if you really want to feel warm in body, mind and spirit to take some time this week to write a handwritten letter - it's a surprising & satisfying way to stoke your fire!