1. Start off with warm hands
Your hands will be warmer out in the cold if you warm them before you go outside. Running hot water over your hands will prepare them for winter temperatures.
2. Keep the core warm
Blood is warmed in the body core and then circulated to the extremities. Prevent body core heat loss by investing in a high quality base layer and parka. Several thinner layers are better than one thick bulky layer.
3. Wear a hat
The head is an area of great heat loss. Preserve core heat loss with the addition of a good wool hat. Acrylic and fleece do not have the high insulating qualities required in really cold weather.
4. In extreme windy and cold conditions wear a face mask
Much like a hat, a face mask will prevent excessive heat loss.
5. Mittens are warmer than gloves
Check out pictures of high altitude mountain climbers. Not a glove to be seen. Everyone wears mittens. Not a great fashion statement, but when it’s 10 degrees and blowing 20, warmth beats fashion all the time
6. NO Alcohol
While you may feel warmer after a drink, the fact is, while alcohol may make you initially feel warmer, it actually lowers your overall body temperature. Alcohol causes the blood vessels in your skin to dilate, and this diverts blood away from your vital organs causing a lowering of core temperature and eventually colder extremities.
7. NO Smoking or Caffeine
Both smoking and caffeine cause your blood vessels to constrict or narrow, and if there isn’t enough blood flow to your hands, they will get cold.
8. Use external heat
Throw away charcoal heat packs, electric products or microwaveable products (Like HXT Heated gloves) actually add heat and warmth. We’ll talk more about the pros and cons of these product in next week’s blog.
9. See your Doctor
If all else fails, a visit to a Doctor is in order. While having cold hands and feet is natural, if you start to experience numbness, changes to the skin color, hardened or tightened skin, sores and blisters, hair loss, or memory loss, talk to your doctor. There are many health conditions that cause cold hands, including:
- Raynaud’s disease
- Diabetes Nerve damage
- Vitamin B12 deficiency
10. Have fun
Outdoor activities are fun and exhilarating. Keep moving. Being active stimulates circulation, driving warm blood form the core to cold extremities. Check out the great HXT Heated Products
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Next Week Blog #4 “Busting the myths surrounding “Heated” products