Foods to Keep You Warm

Last Wednesday, we spoke about the importance of staying warm during the winter. Being cold can take a massive toll on your immune system and is linked to blood pressure problems.

We spoke about how alcohol can cool you from the inside; we didn’t talk about foods that warm you up. Today, we’re looking at foods that warm you up through thermogenesis — when your body produces heat from metabolizing foods. Food that is more complex and takes longer to digest is better. That means protein and fiber can help you stay warm this winter!

Somethings, like homemade porridge, are common sense. The complex carbs take a long time to break down and can aid the heart and circulation. A steaming bowl of porridge can be a great way to start the day warm. Just watch the amount of sugar you add! Ginger tea is also excellent. The heat of the tea itself can warm you, and the root aids digestion, increasing your body’s heat output. The warming impact of things like soup and stews also can’t be discounted. Not only do the foods warm you up through digestion, but they heat your hands and face as you eat.

Seasonal spices, like cumin, nutmeg and cinnamon can all give digestion a boost and keep you warm. That doesn’t mean you should eat a plate of gingerbread; it just means that when you have small holiday treats, you’ll know you’re aiding your temperature. You can also mix them into coffee to bolster the flavor of the drink that — all on its own — helps digestion.

Root vegetables and squash are not only in season, but they also help keep your blood sugar steady and keep you warm. With vitamins and plenty of fiber, they are great in soups or just as a side. We’re huge fans of seasonal produce and foods that aid both our blood sugar and our temperature a great in our book!

A food that you probably wouldn’t think of warming you up is bananas. The magnesium and vitamin B in the fruit help the adrenal and thyroid glands control your body’s thermostat. While the fruit is incredibly sweet, it has a low GI score of 51. The banana also has nutrients that have been linked to improved mood and memory, so you’ll be helping yourself in a number of ways.

One last tip: drink plenty of water. In cold weather, we feel less thirsty and are more likely to be dehydrated. To keep your digestive tract functioning well and creating heat, hydration is a must.

The weather will continue to get more chilly. For the sake of your health, staying warm is crucial to having a happy winter. Speak to a nutritionist about a healthy winter diet to meet your health and lifestyle needs. That way, you can eat, drink and be merry this winter and stay warm with the right foods through the cold days!
December 11, 2019
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