Ok, so I know I don't live anywhere near as possibly cold as other places in the US, or world for that matter, but I am a petite person with low body fat and I have been freezing non-stop this past month. I strive for 100% raw daily, but have occasionally given in to warm foods (nothing too heavy, a small portion of grains mainly). What do you do to keep warm during these winter months?? I find myself wanting to give in for a bowl of warm soup or a warm dish of some sort to warm my body up, but I really don't want to. I feel best 100% raw, but lately it's seemed unappealing to me to eat cold fruits and greens/veggies - how do you guys keep warm and resist the urge to indulge in warm foods??
I take a lot of hot baths in the winter to stay warm which helps far more than eating a hot steamed vegetable which lasts 20 minutes, the baths are much more substantial in terms of keeping your body warm. You can also drink hot herbal teas letting the water cool slightly before adding the herbs. You can also eat raw food that is warmed in the dehydrator. I know what you mean - my diet is basically fruit and some greens and I can get real cold too. By the way, it's okay to eat a hot vegetable broth with spices, I do that in the winter and it does no harm to the body, as long as there is nothing crappy in it and there is no solids (don't eat the vegetables, take for example, just the broth)
I live in New Jersey, and it doesn't get that cold often, but when it does. 1) Portable heater (I do not use heat in my apt besides this!) and 2) Hot baths.
So definitely, I second the baths. Plus it's always fun to have a towel in the dryer for when you get out. Feels so good.
I have been focusing almost solely on this very issue for the past month or two and just started to see some relief. After looking into why a heavily raw diet causes these feelings in the colder months, I started to make a few simple changes that really helped. For starters, I eradicated my fear of cooked foods. I found a love for Chestnuts this season as well, they are incredibly warming and rather tasty too : ) I found this website and it seemed to speak to me right away: http://altmedicine.about.com/cs/dietarytherapy/a/Raw_Foods.htm
After adding more cooked grains to my diet (have been feeling I needed more of those anyway) and incorporating lots of those "warming foods", I have started to see my body again become resilient to the season change. Like Rawkidchef suggested, herbal teas worked for me too, there is almost no doubt they have nutritional or therapeutic value, and they warm you from the inside out.
I also noticed that cardiovascular exercise helps a lot too, the heart is a muscle, and without being used and stretched through exercise, it just won't operate as well as it could.
thanks rawkid. Unfortunately I don't have a dehydrator, so out of luck with warming food. I'm hoping for one by the new year. Hot baths are a good idea, but it's mainly when I'm at work that I tend to want to crave warm foods from the cafe downstairs. When I'm home, all I have is raw food, so no temptations there. I will try the vegetable broths however, but if i'm aiming for 100%, does that seem ok?? I just don't want to get hooked on them, depending on them for cravings. I usually don't have cravings, unless i've given in and eaten something cooked within a day or two.
broths are totally harmless as long as they are oil-free and instead filled with flavors from spices and a small amount of salt. I see them as more a way around a craving rather than a bad craving. If you do start relying on them what I would do is just eat a lot of it (like I said make it as pure as possible without too much salt, fat, etc) because for me it's not a craving that sticks (unlike bad cooked food which stays in your bloodstream and keeps you craving it) because it can easily be cleansed out of the body with fruit or whatever you usually eat on a raw diet. Once you eat a lot of broth you will crave the raw fresh fruit/greens and then everything will be in balance again. Because it is not toxic I don't think it will interfere with going 100% raw. Besides it's much better for you than all those raw nuts and seeds anyway, at least it's much softer on my body.
If you're aiming for 100% raw, then vegetable broth isn't any more raw than any other cooked food - you're right. I eat more nuts & seeds in the winter. I also eat "heavier" greens, like kale instead of lettuce. I also eat more broccoli, cabbage, & cauliflower. These cruciferous veggies still grow well in colder weather, so maybe they're good for what our bodies need in winter. Cayenne & ginger work for some people, to get circulation going. I can't figure out why, but this week I've been cold a lot, and eating a bag of raw dried mangoes (from www.therawchoice.com - the equivalent of 6 mangoes) is the thing that keeps warming me up really well. I don't know if it's just that I've needed more calories, but I have another bag on the shelf just in case. :) Hot baths are WONDERFUL, especially if you're cold at bedtime.
I have 3 tricks.
1) hot showers/baths (already mentioned)
2) drink a cup of warm water (on an empty stomach). It's not as yummie as warm soup or food, but it's effective at taking away the chill.
3) I have something called a Corn Bag. It's really just a small sown bag that has some field corn in it (NOT popping corn). I just toss it in the microwave for 4-5 minutes and it'll stay warm for 45 minutes or so. I'll usually just toss it on my lap or under my feet and I'm happy and toasty warm. I got mine at a massage therapist I see occasionally. If you can't find one to buy you can also use uncooked white rice. Try filling a sock with the rice and tie it off. It'll go into the microwave just the same....if it's a longer sock you can hang it around the back of your neck.
Thanks everyone for your ideas! I'm going to test them out and see how they work on me.
If you use rice in a bag, don't heat in more than 1 minute, or you may get burned. It gets really hot very easily.
Another idea I had is to make a blender soup (put some kind of fat - avocado, hemp seeds, etc. in it for creaminess). Pour it into a Ziploc type freezer bag, then sit the ziploc in a sink or large bowl of hot (but not boiling) water. The soup warms slightly (at least enough so it's not cold) without being cooked. Or make the blender soup using hot/warm water in with your veggies as you make it.
I read that a shot of fresh ginger juice will warm the body. I bought some last night and intend to try it tonight.
shortnotgold- I've read that also. Except I don't have a juicer yet.... But let me know how it feels/tastes!
I LOVE adding fresh ginger & a little lime to my green vegetable juices!
You can make juice by grinding in a blender and straining through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag. Voila, instant juice!
I agree with Twitch about the corn bags...I work at a spa in Seattle and we sell neck wraps full of rice that you heat in the microwave...that has been a pretty constant fixture on my body this winter. I put it around my neck, on my back, and even on my face (after it cooled a little) when my sinuses were hurting. It smells like Jasmine and it relaxes me when I bring it to bed. We sell them here for $22 but I am sure you can find them online too...if anyone wants one let me know and perhaps we can work something out for me to ship one too you. They are a great help.
I add cayenne and cinnamon to foods whenever it works with the flavor. I make a "hot chocolate" using sunflower seeds, cacao, lucuma, maca, mesquite, sweetner, cayenne and cinnamon with warm tap water in the blender. It is perfect on cold mornings.
I also drink warm water with lemon and sometimes a little sweetner. I love that too.
I've been making raw soups to take to work. I put it in a jar, then pour it in a bowl at lunch. Eating soup makes me think that it's a warm meal and not so bad. It's a mental thing I guess. Right now I'm eating a soup that I made from the Cafe Gratitude recipe book. It has spices that warm me up.
I know what you mean about the cold. For some reason, I re-introduce myself to raw foods in the winter. Such sabotage.
Thanks everyone for your comments - greatly appreciated!
I live in Oregon, and while it doesn't often snow, it does get really cold! Also I live in an old drafty house with no heat and many broken windows. These are some things that have really helped me keep warm.
1) Long underwear. A lot of people don't seem to know how much a cozy extra layer on the legs can really make a difference. A lot of times my long undies keep me so warm that I don't even need the extra layer on top that otherwise would not have even kept me from shivering. And no one will ever know you are "cheating" because they go under your pants! It's like a superpower!
3) when I make tea I pour the hot water in a mason jar and put the tea in a little tea ball. The mason jar is too hot for me to touch for awhile, but I can put it on my lap against my tummy outside of my clothes. It totally warms me up, and by the time the jar is getting too cool to feel through my clothes, the tea is ready and the perfect temperature for drinking!
4) Boyfriends. I don't know why, but men are like snuggly space heaters. If you don't have one, I highly recommend investing in one ;)
hi Eloisa..there is a 'warm recipe' tag here http://www.goneraw.com/taxonomy/term/58
also, i love to pre warm the serving bowl or cup by letting it stand for a few minutes with very hot water in it:)
get a pit bull to cuddle with!
scarves. and layers.
i have been having some soup, no grains, no beans. just clear broth and soaked veggies. i also do some cooked squash and sweet potato. i am a big fan of tea.
i seem to get more cold at night, so i eat raw all day until night. and then it's only the things i mentioned above. seems to be helping me warm up and i've already had all my raw greens, etc for the day.
I recently learned that first aid for hypothermia includes a "sugary drink" - I think that's why the dried mangoes have been warming me up. Any quick-acting carbs should do the trick - dates, etc.