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How to get acclimatized to Canada’s winter

There’s a reason Canada is called the Great White North. Cold weather crosses the country, with Vancouver, Calgary and Ottawa serving as some of the nation’s iciest locales. 

With an average temperature of -28.9 degrees Celsius, Yellowknife, NT, tops the charts as the coldest area in the country – and, nationwide, December tends to be the chilliest month.

Follow these tips to make sure you’re warm and cozy when the frigid temperatures arrive.

Although some places in Canada experience a more extreme drop in temperature than others during the winter months, they all have one wintery thing in common: cold. 

The good news is that there is plenty you can do to help your body’s natural thermometer stay at that optimum level and get you through the frigid winter.

“As Canadians, we are accustomed to our cold winters, but that doesn't mean they are entirely risk-free. The cold can take a more significant toll on very young children and the elderly,” says Helen Sherrard, president of the Canadian Health Food Association (chfa). “There are foods and natural health products that some of the oldest cultures in the world have used to maintain a healthy body temperature and they are all very accessible to us.”

The chfa recommends foods, like garlic and onions and supplements that assist the body with proper blood circulation,. Cook your favourite, hearty meals with magnesium-rich ingredients like tomatoes, leafy greens, beans, oats and others, and add ginger and cayenne pepper for a delicious and lasting warm sensation. Complement this diet with a healthy dose of exercise to get your heart pumping and your blood vessels dilating. A great way to do this is to practise Ashtanga yoga, which teaches special breathing techniques to promote internal body heat.

chfa also recommends that you maintain your health product supplementation routines for an optimally healthy body. Including a daily B vitamin can help increase blood flow and maintain that internal warmth. Make sure to always consult with your health practitioner before making changes to your health routines and visit chfa.ca to find out more about natural health products.

Fine tune your furnace. Nothing’s worse than furnace trouble during the fall and winter months. Make sure your furnace is primed and ready to perform during the cold winter months with a few checks. Install a new filter, and check to see if the motor and blower need cleaning.

Insulate windows. With all their gaps and edges, windows are a main area for drafts. To keep cold air out, install insulating window seals. These kits are easy to install and can help keep the thermostat down, lowering heating bills.

Cover door nooks and crannies. When air slips in under the door, it’s natural to want to turn up the heat. Fight this urge with an insulating door seal which hugs the door from both sides to keep out drafts. To seal the entire door perimeter, install a self-adhesive foam or rubber door seal around door edges.

Stock up on supplies. 

Be prepared for a sudden snowstorm by purchasing key cold weather supplies, like salt for the driveway, antifreeze to keep in your trunk and new shovels. It doesn’t hurt to have a few non-perishable food items, extra batteries and plenty of blankets on hand should you get snowed in.      

                                                                                                                                                                – News Canada

Posted: Dec 3, 2014

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