cold, snowy winterDespite the mild weather in California, some hours during winter time can be very cold when the temperature drops down and reach the low 40°F (4.4°C).

Most of us will experience these discomfort feelings as cold hands and feet. The reason for this occurrence is our body gets into a surviving cold state. When that happens, our body tries to keep our internal organs warm to function, and blood vessel circulation in our extremities constructs is limited. As a result, we feel cold to the touch including fingers, hand, toes, feet, nose, and ears. These discomfort feelings require us to take action so body temperatures will rise to normal levels.

People who are experiencing cold hands and feet are the ones who are usually diagnosed with a health condition like cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes. Cold hands and feet could also be a sign that there are blockages in the small blood vessels. Medications and nutrition could improve these sensations. You could increase healthy fats in your daily diet specifically Omega-3 fats to balance back your normal body temperatures (remember, that overdosing your body with Omega-3 can harm you too. Always consult with your health professional before taking any food supplementation).

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Most people attempt to stay at home to avoid the cold weather during winter time. As a result, we eat more, we do less exercise, and we gain weight.

What else you can you do to raise your body temperatures:

1. Stay warm
– Layering, with non-synthetic materials, will allow warm air from your body to act as an insulator and the sweat will not cause discomfort. Layer yourself with a toque, mittens, and a fleece pullover over a thin long sleeve top, light jacket or loose pants.

2. Move your hands and feet
– swing your leg back-and-forward same with hands and arms.

3. Exercise more

  • Days are shortening. After the working hours, it is dark and cold which will reduce your motivation to get out and exercise. Try to exercise during lunch time where the temperature is usually higher compared to night time. Even 20-30 minutes is better than no exercise, doing so, will affect your health and mood.
  • Stretch indoor – warm your muscles indoor, before getting out to the cold. Just 3-5 minutes of moderate stretches indoor will make a huge difference. You could start by walking on a treadmill, jump in place, jump rope or just doing a few sets of stairs.
  • If it’s snowing or raining outside, stay inside and be safe. Try to avoid falls. Slow down or just chose to work indoors. Better to be safe than sorry.

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4. The cold stimulates your appetite, and you experience hunger –Eat and drink steaming soups, herbal teas, and hot foods. Warm foods will support the thermogenesis effect that will help with the desire to reduce the coldness feeling. This effect is also called the “heat making” process. It takes about 30-60 minutes after eating for our bodies to generate about 10% more heat than when we have on an empty stomach. You should also eat several (6-8) smaller meals over the day to regulate your body heat. Chicken soup, roots vegetables like sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, yams, daikon, turnip, parsnip, or Jerusalem artichoke will give your body the required nutrients to provide energy, balance back your body temperature, and keep you warm.

 

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