By Hira Mushtaq

Winter is the season of dormancy. If we look at nature, plants shed their leave so they need to expend less energy to stay alive, many animals hibernate in winter, and our ancestors used to gather and store food in the fall so they could minimize going out in search of food during winter which would have been very difficult to find anyways. Pickling, salting, fermenting and drying are all of these practices that came into existence to store food in the past.

Allah SWT has created us and He has also created the seasons, He knows what our body needs in particular seasons. If we start living according to seasons we can boost our immunity.

Let’s dive into how we can support ourselves in the winter months.

Dietary recommendations :

  1. Give preference to eating cooked food and avoid eating raw food. e.g avoid raw salads and smoothies. Our metabolism slows down naturally during winter so it is hard for our body to break down raw food. Comfort food like soups, stews, and our cultural (Pakistani) food like paaya is great to have in winter.
  2. Have vitamin B-rich food. Vitamin B helps our bodies to tackle stress, increase energy and improve our mood. Vitamin B-rich foods are chicken, fish, turkey, lean meat, egg, and lentils.
  3. Include root vegetables in your meals. Winter is the season of root vegetables. These veggies are high in complex carbohydrates. Complex carbs help to regulate blood sugar levels throughout the day, and blood sugar fluctuation causes stress to the body. Carbs are also the main provider of energy in our body. Some food recommendations to include complex carbs in your meals are sweet potatoes, pumpkins, carrots, beets, quinoa, beans and barley.
  4. Have vitamin d rich food. During winter we are not exposed to the sun as much as we are in summer. So it is important to have vitamin D-rich food. Vitamin D helps to reduce depression and anxiety and it supports the immune system. Some vitamin D-rich food include eggs, mushrooms, salmon, sweet potato, and oats.

Lifestyle recommendations:

  1. Don’t go out unnecessarily.
  2. Wear proper clothing that will keep you warm when you go out. Make sure that you are keeping your head and chest warm.
  3. Whenever the sun is out, bundle up and spend some time in the sun.
  4. Do a grounding exercise. Be active but don’t let your body get tired by over exercise.
  5. Rest, reflect, think, set goals and prepare your body for the next season i.e spring when you will go out and flourish.

I hope you benefited from this post if you have any questions reach out via email at or let’s talk on Instagram @heal_with_hira

About the Author:

Hira Mushtaq is a clinical nutritionist. She helps women to live life in sync with their bodies and nature. Her main focus is to help women with hypothyroidism and digestive issues to eliminate their fatigue, gas, bloating, constipation, lose weight and balance their hormones. She believes every individual is different and has different symptoms and goals to improve their physical and emotional health. There is no “one-size-fits-all” nutrition plan. She works with you to figure out the root cause of your health issues and help you to achieve your goals with diet and lifestyle changes.