During the long winter months, it can feel like your hands and feet are constantly cold. This is especially true for those who have poor circulation, and no matter how many layers you wear, your extremities are left feeling frozen. So what can you do to banish the chills?
Wisconsin-based Dr John Brill of Aurora Health Care revealed to Mail Online a number of ways to boost your circulation in order to warm up hands and feet during winter, and some might surprise you…
1. Wear loose-fitted clothes
These act as an insulation layer as the air in between the fabric warms up too. Because of this, mittens actually work better than gloves. Dr Brill also suggests wearing two pairs of socks – one tight pair and another looser, thicker pair on top.
2. Eat spicy foods
Spicy foods encourage good circulation by opening up the blood vessels. Eating a bit of spice also raises your body temperature and increases blood flow.
3. Avoid cigarettes, coffee and alcohol
A good idea for improving circulation is to say no to nicotine, caffeine and alcohol. They can cause the blood vessels to constrict, meaning your hands and feet are more likely to stay cold.
Alcohol is a tricky one, as it makes you feel like you’re warming up. But this isn’t the case – you just become less sensitive to the cold but your body isn’t really heating up at all.
If you have tried all of these steps and you can’t warm up, or you feel pain in your hands and feet when it’s cold, it may indicate something more serious. It could be a sign of a blocked artery, anaemia, Raynaud’s disease or another medical condition. Visit your GP if you are concerned.