Garlic Oil for the feet
This is an oldie but a good trick. Take a bulb of garlic and half a glass of oil – something light and cheap – say grapeseed oil. Blend the two together in a blender, scape into a jar that has a lid and leave sitting somewhere warm for two days. After that, strain out the bits of ground-up garlic, and hey presto you have garlic oil.
In the morning before slipping your socks on, massage a teaspoon of it in to the soles of your feet, and if you have kids that are picking up ills and chills, rub it into their soles as well.
The essence of garlic that acts as a potent immune tonic will absorb into their body and help ward off viruses and bacteria.
Pinch of Cayenne pepper
Are you lacking warmth during winter? Are you one of those that feel like you need a hot water bottle strapped to you permanently? Always got cold hands or feet?
Put the smallest pinch of cayenne pepper on food and in drinks. How small? Small enough not to be tasted, ie an intense burning sensation, but large enough to have the desired effect, ie warming you from the inside out. As the measure is different for everyone, I suggest starting off with a tiny tiny pinch, so as not to overdo it.
Cold feet? Put a pinch of cayenne pepper in your socks. As your feet in your shoes warm up it will activate the cayenne pepper and increase the blood circulation to your feet. Again, just start off with a tiny tiny pinch.
Want to keep warm but there is only so many hot chocolates, coffees and tea that you can drink. Try miso soup. Miso contains fermented soya bean paste and is a great source of protein and minerals. It comes as a powder or a paste, and stirred into hot water can make a savoury drink.
Snack on Nori
You know those green sushi sheets you can buy in packs of ten from supermarkets and Asian produce stores? They are known as Nori, and they are great for snacking when you just need to put something in your mouth but don’t want extra calories or to feel like you have over eaten. They are crisp and salty; contain magnesium, iron and high amounts of chlorophyll – a cleansing, blood-enriching plant substance, and can replace a craving for chips.
People tend to want to eat more during winter as a way of creating more heat, so this is a perfect snack to reduce winter calories, but keep you satisfied. To keep them crisp, make sure you keep them in an air tight container once opened.
Fry with dry-pan roasted and ground up sesame seeds
Winter begs heat. Heating, frying and roasting food is a great comfort in winter, but all that oil can create a sluggish lymphatic system, which is your immune system’s super highway.
Try this when it comes to roasting or frying. Take half a cup of sesame seeds and place them into a dry frying pan and roast them on a high heat, stirring regularly too make sure none of them burn. When they start popping and jumping and have a slight glaze or very slight brownish tinge to them, they are ready.
Scoop them into a bowl and let cool. When cooled, grind them to a fine paste in a coffee grinder.
Add them to a fry pan with some water and herbs, salt, curry powder, turmeric – whatever herbs and spices you like. Add the ingredients to be fried and start cooking. Stir regularly.
The paste has a natural oiliness to it, but also has fibre and roughage still attached to it, albeit ground and with the minerals it contains still intact.
The result will be food that has a pleasant creamy taste without excessive oiliness.
Garlic, Garlic, Garlic
Garlic’s antibacterial, antiviral and just about anti any pathogen property has been well established over the years. So during winter tuck into as much garlic as you can. Fry it. Roast it. Bake it. It’s all a good source of immune fighting compounds.
One of the biggest drawbacks to garlic consumption is garlic breath and garlic wind from down below. Try boiling the garlic for twenty minutes before cooking with it to eliminate this.
Place whole bulbs into water and bring to the boil. When done the garlic inside its skin will be like mush and can be squeezed out. The substance that creates the smell is no longer in it, but it will still aid your immune system.