Combating winter sluggishness (Ayurveda 1)

It’s the thick of winter. Branches are bare and harshly shining in the strong rare sun. Locally you can’t find any fresh local fruit and most vegetables were harvested a couple of months ago.

Seems everything is congealing, contracting, and trying to get more sleep. Your body too, responds to weather, light, and diet -especially dense and rich holiday foods, by trying to hunker down and thicken. Sometimes even your mood can feel stuck. What to do?

This is a great time to start a daily hot water practice! This easy practice will soften congealed food remnants and loosen your shrotas – microscopic channels throughout the body that transport cellular debris and empty into the intestines. It helps your digestive enzymes too.

Easy to do: simply boil about 2 quarts of water gently for about 7-10 minutes. This breaks up all the temporary crystalline alignments in the water and lets each molecule of H2O be available for even the smallest degree of hydration. (Don’t believe me, try and see if you notice a difference wearing a blindfold – the water seems much lighter.)

Place the hot water in a thermos (I like Thermos brand), add a slice of ginger, about a teaspoon of whole fennel, and enjoy sips throughout the day. You can always get fancier, but this simple recipe is really all you need to warm the cockles of your heart.

I promise you will feel lighter!

By Dr. Jen Wyman-Clemons, MD

Dr. Wyman-Clemons treats the body, mind, emotions as well as spiritual wellness using tools described by established teachers and authors and her own experiences as she experiences an ongoing sense of (loving) energetic intrusion (possession) since 2019. She has ~thirty years of clinical experience as an allergy and internal medicine physician (ABAI, ABIM) has completed requirements to practice as a yoga teacher, USUI Reiki Master, and astrologer.


  1. Hi Dr. Jen…It’s Helen Holt, mostly retired NP (turning 80 this summer). Wondered where you went post Madison. Your practice sounds amazing. I used pieces of alternative medicine with my pain patients at MAMC and shared some with Fuji’s McPherson—NP in IMC who has a doctorate in Chinese Medicine and acupuncture. I would love to hear more about what you are doing. I have been doing some NP contracting now and then, doing mostly Medicare home visits (which I love), but mostly vegetating. Drop me a note if you get a chance. Would love to hear more about your practice.

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