Four Winter Myths and What To Do Instead

A new year is thought of as a clean slate, but quickly that slate can fill with recommendations, advice, all the “shoulds” that we easily fall susceptible to taking on if we feel the least bit unhappy with the previous year. Add that to all the well-intentioned hints and ideas passed down by family, friends, and urban legends, and we can get caught in a tailspin before the year has truly begun.

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You may be surprised at the ways to keep yourself in good health and balanced spirits through this time full of potential. Here are four wintertime myths and what to do instead.

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  1. Launch into new changes with the new year -- Resolutions go with the New Year like a sparkly ball in Times Square goes with silly glasses. But mid-winter is not the best time to spring into a handful of changes and new projects. According to Ayurvedic lore, winter is a time of rest, contemplation, and rejuvenation before the more active springtime. If you take time to get clear about goals and think about all the plans that would go along with new projects, you’ll be ready to spring into action in March. Resting also supports a healthy immune system when everyone around you seems to be falling to flu and viruses.

  2. Counterbalance all that holiday overeating with a cleanse -- You may have indulged between all the holiday parties and family occasions, but cleansing now would counter your body’s natural rhythm for the time of year. Cleansing can strip the body of nourishment and warmth at a time when it needs it most. Lighten your load by sipping broth-based soups, digging into hearty vegetable-rich stews, and enjoying warming tea. Here at the dhyana Center, we have a collection of warming instant beverages and other products that support your nourishment and keep your digestive fire stoked.

  3. Bundle up and stay indoors - Baby, it’s cold outside, but not too cold to get out in some fresh air. Despite old tales, you don’t compromise your health by going outside. Your immune system strengthens with exposure to cold and getting fresh air is an improvement over enclosed spaces that can breed and circulate more bacteria. And rather than increase your risk to catch a cold, the cells that fight infection strengthen when your body is exposed to colder air. Getting outside also improves your mood while going for a walk stimulates circulation of your lymphatic system, the strongest defender of your health.

  4. Stock up on vitamin C to ward off a cold - Unfortunately, megadoses of vitamin C are not proven to fight infection. Instead, work on keeping your immunity river flowing. This river is your lymphatic system, also called “the river of life” or rasa in Ayurveda. The lymphatic system circulates through voluntary muscle movement, so engaging in gentle exercise frequently (think a 5 minute walk around your office every hour) keeps that river from stagnating and moves foreign invaders out of the excretory system with regularity. Reducing stress also keeps your immune system strong. Tend to both these aspects with a treatment at the dhyana Center, featuring a free muscle tenderizing pinda add-on.

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Be gentle with yourself this winter. This is the time to recuperate and prepare for a busy year. But it doesn’t have to be busy just yet, so nurture yourself to stay strong and make self-care your resolution.


Andrea Foster