•The advent of winter usually arrives just after Thanksgiving.  Winter is the time for inner reflection, hibernating.  The exercise of winter is sleep, and a good season of it will ensure an energetic spring.  Let yourself sleep.

•In earlier eras before electric lights, people naturally slept much more in the winter. Nine to ten hours per night is just fine if you want that much.

•If you cannot exercise as much as you would like, find other ways to regularly sweat out the toxins like taking a sauna or a nice long bath. Make sure to stretch to keep your muscles and ligaments limber. Even 5-10 minutes a day can make a big difference in your health.

•The wind gates are the areas which the ancient Chinese noted are portals for “cold” to enter the body. They include the kidneys, head, neck and chest. Keep the wind gates covered when out of doors, especially if it is damp or windy.  Avoid getting chilled.

•Eat more warm and cooked foods and less cold and raw foods.  The body has to use more energy to stay warm, even more so if it has to warm up your food.  Broths are especially good at this time of year. Doctor Shapiro’s chicken soup recipe is included below.

•The digestive system tends to be more sluggish in the winter as people typically are less active.  Avoid overeating and be sure to stay hydrated. 

•In the winter your body will love cooked dark greens such as kale and collards, and roots like carrots, turnips and parsnips every day. It will also appreciate more naturally fermented foods with live cultures such as miso and raw sauerkraut.  Warming teas such as chai and ginger are great this time of year. Less sugar and alcohol will also support your good health.

•Do something every day to make a deposit into the energy account of your body.  Anything that is nourishing to your nervous system such as yoga, meditation, bodywork, acupuncture, and creative endeavors will feed your energy account. 

•Fun is essential. Do something fun and please, love and appreciate yourself and those around you every day! There is nothing better to support good health and well being than a positive outlook. 


Magic Pet Publishing 2012 Copyright Marcey Shapiro MD