Body Warming Foods
24 may 2018
With winter and its cold weather just around the corner, it’s important to help your body warm itself from the inside out, and one way you can do that is with food, glorious food.
Each different type of food has its own unique characteristics, and according to traditional Chinese medicine, foods can either be ‘cooling’ by cleansing and detoxifying the body, or ‘warming’ by blood building and energy boosting.
By raising energy levels and improving circulation, warming foods can help relieve the feeling of coldness. On top of this, they are known to help people who suffer with bloating, joint pain, and fluid retention. So what exactly are these superfoods you should be warming up to? Let’s take a closer look at some!
Ginger is a well known immunity booster, and as well as that, it’s a warming food that can increase metabolism. This spice creates heat in your body by helping with blood circulation. Ginger is commonly used in lots of different Asian dishes, which are perfect winter warmers. But, there are many other ways to incorporate ginger in your food, like adding it to cakes, sauces, or even adding slices to your tea.
Cayenne Pepper and Chilli
These ones are probably no-brainers, adding foods that literally create heat into your diet will help warm your body. Add them to soups, stews, and sauces for a little kick and a bit of extra warmth.
Think sweet potatoes, parsnips, and celeriac. These versatile veggies contain lots of potassium and B vitamins which help build blood. On top of this, they are high in fibre which helps keep everything we put into our bodies moving through. These foods are all perfect for use in soups, or on their own when roasted or mashed.
Leeks contain lots of the same immune boosting, antioxidant benefits as onions and garlic, but what they also contain are vitamins that help protect our blood vessel lining. These vitamins and antioxidants together promote circulation and prevent coldness in the limbs and extremities. Leek soups and risottos are always crowd pleasers, you can also use them as substitutes to onions in some recipes.
Who can say ‘no’ to a hot chocolate on a cold winter night? Definitely not us. Just opt for the dark variety. Dark chocolate helps improve circulation, increase energy, and promote nitric oxide, which helps increase the flow of oxygen and blood, which in turn warms the body. Start baking with dark chocolate this winter or enjoy it on its own.
The warming effect of red wine comes from your body’s reaction to the tannins and histamines found in the skins of red grapes, combined with the alcohol. Together, they work to warm you up as the alcohol increases blood flow throughout your body, including your skin, that’s why some people experience flushing in their face when drinking.
There are lots of other foods that can help your body beat the winter chill, and coping with the cold weather with some delicious warming meals is the perfect excuse to get cooking. So this winter, stay warm, keep active and moving, and eating!