As I sit here, wrapped in a blanket, passing time while the rice cooks for the evening meal, my thoughts drift back to my homeland…Canada.
People often think of Canadians, especially those from Saskatchewan, as hearty people. As people who find pleasure in extreme winter weather. Since I grew up in Saskatchewan, I can say that this is true.
It’s also true that not everyone is as enthusiastic about the cold weather. It’s actually pretty amazing how seasonal changes can affect us. For many, changes in weather bring about changes in energy levels, activity levels, dietary choices and mood. This makes it important for us to remember to keep up healthy living practices.
When I was a kid, in the winters, one would likely find my friends and me out cross-country skiing, playing street hockey or playing in the snow (snowball fights were a common past time!). No one seemed to notice the cold. We piled on enough layers of clothing, and off we went.
My kids, being raised in Lebanon, are having a very different winter experience. For example, school has been cancelled for the past two days because it’s too cold (6°C) outside. Seems crazy doesn’t it? I’m sure my North American friends won’t believe this, but it’s true. You see, the schools aren’t heated, and sitting on metal or wooden chairs in that kind of cold is really very unpleasant.
Our homes aren’t heated either, hence why I’m wrapped in a cozy blanket. Sure, we use gas heaters in the kitchen. However, these come with their own risks as a friend found out last year when his gas bottle exploded! Thankfully, he received only minor burns.
This brings me back to thinking about the differences in the ways people experience cold weather. In Canada, when it’s snowing, kids run outside to play in it. In this type of cold when it’s raining, kids run for cover under blankets with their favorite book or gadget to keep them entertained.
The food we eat, though, is similar to what we eat in Canada. During bouts of cold weather, we seek out hot foods and warm drinks. Needless to say, there isn’t a lot of beer drinking in our house during the winter. 🙁 Tonight, we’re having brown rice with an oven baked frittata and stir fried veggies with garlic and ginger (recipe coming soon!). These are warming foods, comfort foods and filling foods.
Remember, the cold weather often means changes to our regular routines. With the cold temperatures in place, our exercise levels drop as we spend more time huddled under the covers. I find that we like to eat more when it’s cold. This delicious meal is perfect because it leaves us feeling content without packing on the calories. This way, we’ll all stay in energy balance and keep up our healthy living…..and that’s a good thing.
How do you survive the cold? Tell me in the comments section, I’d love to hear from you! Have a great weekend, I look forward to connecting with you again next week!