by Cara Michele Nether
I love the warm weather! The summer sun is one of my best friends. I miss my friend right now.
If any of you are warm weather lovers like me, the winter and the cold air can be tricky. Some days are warmer than others and we really never know when we are going to be blown over by the wind.
I want to share a few simple tips that have made a huge difference for me and for thousands of others around the world.
The first tip is to wear a scarf. Most people don’t know that Oriental Medicine considers climatic factors to be just as important as any other pathogen that might cause us to not feel well. Our necks have areas that are particularly vulnerable to the wind. There is the obvious wind that we feel when we are outside and there is also moving air that we feel when we are inside. Forced-air from heating systems is often the cause of indoor air movement this time of year. Keeping our necks covered with indoor, light weight scarves, or heavier outdoor scarves will not only help to keep us warmer but protect us from getting sick.
The other tip may not be as obvious, but is great for keeping us cozy warm. Have you ever heard of an item of clothing called a haramaki? A haramaki is a Japanese belly band that you wear around your middle to keep your internal organs toasty warm. In Asia, you will often see people with material tied round their middles in cold weather rather than wearing big bulky coats. Chinese Medicine theory states clearly that keeping the kidneys and internal organs warm is key for good health.
You can make a haramaki out of any material you have. A scarf or any extra material will do just fine. All you have to do is wrap the material around your abdomen and low back a few times and then tuck in the end under one of the folds. If you have thin material you can wear your haramaki under your pants, skirts, and shirts without anyone knowing.
Between our low back and lower abdomen is an area where our vital energy resides. Keeping this part of our body especially warm helps improved circulation and greater distribution of warm energy all around. Many people even report that their hands and feet feel warmer and that the haramaki helped with their digestion and menstrual cramps.
Good health is no accident – especially with the brutal cold we are experiencing. Try these tips and let me know how they work for you.