Damp, dreary days – how it affects your body and what you can do

This dark, damp weather is dreary and can be depressing. The clouds block the sun so the air is cold and stays cold. As the sun isn’t shining, the puddles remain and the dampness lingers. The dampness makes your clothes heavy and uncomfortable.

All this can affect our body. We curl up and stop which can make our body ache. It makes us feel heavy and stiff and sore. Our bodies take time to get going again, slowly moving but then tiring quickly. When pressed, our skin only slowly recovers its shape and inside we may have poor digestion or nausea.

It slows our thinking. We can’t remember things; can’t concentrate; get anxious and go over things again and again; get despondent; may get weepy, preferring to be alone; talk hesitantly or reluctantly. It gives us a sore heavy head and headache and may cause vertigo or dizziness. The chest can feel full or stuffy which makes it difficult to breathe comfortably. Limbs feel sore, bruised, heavy and stiff. Muscles may twitch or joints ache and swell.

So what can we do? We can’t shift the clouds and the mist but while we wait for the sun to come out we can help our body deal with it.

  • We can move our bodies. We need to either keep moving or we stiffen up. Flowing through a yoga practice allows your body to stretch and bring in some heat.
  • Relax as much as you can, keeping yourself warm when you do.
  • Avoid sweet or sweet-tasting food, raw or cold food, (eg salads and cold vegetables) iced or chilled food, uncooked food and most kinds of fruit, especially watery fruit like melons, fruit juices and soda drinks, like smoothies. In other words, food and drinks that you probably eat in the warm summer time.
  • Eat food that is well cooked, warming soups, cooked green vegetables, spices and pepper with plenty of protein to help your spleen.
  • Include herbs and spices such as ginger, turmeric, cumin, cinnamon, rosemary and marjoram. They warm the body through and stave off any chills.
  • Have drinks that are warm, maybe ginger tea, and save the ice cream for when the sun comes out.
  • Eat slowly in relaxed surroundings and take time to chew your food.

Try some of these as well as some Sun Salutations and a couple of Sun Warriors while you wait for the sun to return which it will very soon!