1. Don’t eat lots of tropical fruits, vegetables and other foods
Nature is beautifully designed – the plants and foods that grow in hot climates generally have a much more cooling quality that those that grow in temperate or colder climates. Ideal for people who live in those countries, but not so good for us living in northern Europe in the middle of winter! So rather than oranges and bananas, eat apples and pears, berries, and dried fruits like raisins or apricots. Make a nice fruit crumble with warming custard, rather than eating a lot of raw fruit (which will also weaken your immunity to viruses).
Short grain brown rice is much more warming and filling than long grain or basmati at this time of year. Millet, whole oats and wheat and spelt also warm the body.
Root vegetables like swede, carrots, salsify, burdock, and parsnips all warm the body when well cooked.
2. Eat less raw food
Raw food cools the body, so great when the weather is summery and hot, or if your health condition is more of an overly hot type.
So have a cooked breakfast, not a cereal with cold milk, and use a mixture of long cooked dishes like beans and grains and baked vegetables, as well as some lightly steamed, blanched, fried or pickled vegetables to give some lightness and freshness to your meals.
3. Don’t eat refined sugar
Sugar is a funny one, at first it warms and energises the body as it is a quick burning food, so it can seem warming. But it then leaves the body feeling empty and cooler (which may make you want your next fix of it to bring your energy back up again) Eating a lot of sugar every day actually depletes your whole body of energy, as well as of a lot of vitamins and minerals.
4. Don’t over drink ‘yin’ liquids
It may seem that a nice cup of black tea or coffee warms you up – it does as first as the liquid is hot, but later these drinks actually cool the core of the body down. So having 6, 8 or 10 cups a day is really going to deplete you. Some people can even feel that one or two cups has a bad effect, especially those already very depleted such as chronic fatigue sufferers.
5. Use less spices, more herbs
Spice is nice, but too much acts like sugar on your body – first it creates heat, then it cools you down. This is why spices are traditionally used in hot countries, and not in colder countries. Actually they take the heat inside the body to the outside, giving us the sensation of heat, but also cooking down the core of the body.
Use herbs instead, this is what we find growing around us and were given in temperate climates to season our food.