I’ve heard about the benefits of exclusively eating and drinking warm but it wasn’t until this winter when I actually tried it myself. It had been suggested to me by both an Eastern medicine doctor and Ayurvedic practitioner after sharing with them some of my health concerns (digestion, fatigue, thyroid health, the fact that I’m always cold, yada yada yada) so I figured, what do I have to lose? I fully committed. A few other rules: no gluten and little sugar or dairy.
It took me a few days to get in the rhythm. My go-to morning smoothies were no longer an option nor were cold salads for lunch, but by day three I was golden. Meals looked something like this:
Dinner: fish, veggies & rice or curries
To drink: room temperature water, warm water with lemon and teas
So why did I do this? What does eating warm actually do?
There are different philosophies about eating warm, especially in Chinese medicine which focuses on how warm foods move energy in your body. For example, it’s believed that spicy foods such as onion and cayenne pepper have a warming action, promoting energy to move upwards and outwards to the body’s surface, circulating the blood. They also are said to be useful to disperse mucus from the lungs. However, for purposes of this experiment, I was focused on eating and drinking warm in terms of temperature. The thinking is that raw or uncooked food can place a strain on our digestive systems forcing our bodies to work harder to break down food, ultimately taking more of our body’s energy in the process. As less energy is needed to create digestive heat, there’s more energy available to aid digestion and absorption of nutrients.
Makes sense, right? After eating and drinking warm exclusively for two months, I can genuinely say that my digestion has never been better and my core temperature went up. And I’m not just saying that as a feeling. I kept a log of my temperature every single day – it was the first thing I did every morning – and my core temperature rose. My energy was through the roof as was my hygge and it was such a lovely way to eat through the stormy, cold months.
I’ve since added cold back into my system – it’s really hard to sustain – but find that my mind/body are now drawn to warmer meals/drinks after the experiment. There’s something really nourishing about it.
Has anyone else ever done this or do you all think I’ve lost my mind here?!