Winter Warmers - 7 top tips to keep you warm
Are you struggling in the cold weather on a hi-raw diet ? This is the time of year when people often go back to eating too much stodgy, cooked food.
We've got lots of tips to keep you warm though the winter, and stay healthy at the same time.
1. Spice it up
Use spices to add warmth. Cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, mild curry spices, are great in soups and smoothies, stimulating digestion and bringing many benefits to the immune system.
Dao's current favourite is adding an inch of ginger to his morning nut milk smoothie - it gives the whole thing a 'warming lift'.
2. Gently, gently
Raw food can be lightly warmed as long as it is kept under 116F, but you don't need a thermometer. For instance, if you're warming a raw soup in a pan, as long as you can keep your finger in it comfortably, it is not too hot.
Extra tip: warm the bowl by filling with boiling water, and empty again before adding food.
3. Eat denser foods
Foods with a higher fat content will feel more satisfying at this time of year.
You may need the additional calories of denser foods in winter - more nuts, avocados, coconut, and raw goat/sheep cheese.
Careful on the weight gain for those of you concerned with such things.
4. Hi-raw, not all raw
Because we are advocating just a dominance of raw food, that leaves you plenty of room for manoeuvre. Aim for 75% raw leaves, fruits, veg, nuts & seeds. And 25% can be cooked - roasted or steamed veg, soups, stews, and curries.
Any cheese, meat, fish and eggs that you are eating will naturally be a part of this 25%. But remember to keep those raw, green leaves at the fore - try adding a bit of cooked to your salad.
Try sauteed onions, or steamed broccoli, green beans or peas.
Earthy Delight Salad
Put some mushrooms on to fry - gently in coconut oil, herbs or fresh ginger and garlic.
Meanwhile tear a variety of leaves, fresh herbs, and sprouts into a bowl.
Grate in a gorgeous, earthy beetroot, and add something sweet, such as red pepper.
Drizzle on some dressing (creamy tahini works well - you can add the spices here too).
Tip the mushrooms in, and enjoy a delicious, meal that is satisfying, tasty and WARM, but still high raw.
5. Hot drinks
Hot water, with a squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of cayenne or paprika, or slices of raw ginger.
A soothing, warm drink that also has immune boosting, and anti-inflammatory qualities that protect you from winter bugs. An ancient, Ayurvedic recipe, used for centuries.
Gently heat a cup of nut milk with half a teaspoon of powdered turmeric - keep the nut milk at blood temperature.
Extras - a pinch of black pepper, salt, saffron, cardamon, cinnamon or ginger powder.
Add a tea spoon of honey, or maple syrup to offset the astringency of the turmeric.
Turmeric has blood-thinning properties, and is used as a medicine in this way.
Recommended 1 cup per day max.
6. Layer up
It sounds simple, and it is...
Wear more layers, rather than turning the heating up.
Remember the old Scandanavian idiom - "There is no bad weather, only bad clothing"...
It is easy to slump into lethargy in the depths of winter, but some exercise will warm you from the core, as well as really lifting your mood. It could be a simple as going for a brisk walk, and that'll help getting your weekly dose of sunlight to aid sunning : see November newsletter.
Or even putting on your favourite music and having a dance around the living room.
Make sure it is something you enjoy, and not a 'should'...