Tag Archives: Winter


Keeping healthy in Winter

Winter is a time when the number of hospital admissions always goes up. What can we do to minimise the risk of that to ourselves and our loved ones? Also for many of us, what can we do to minimise the number of coughs and colds we get?



For myself it starts with diet and getting enough exercise. Plenty of green vegetables and eating fruit to get that vital vitamin C. I like to eat as local as possible and at the moment we still have some of our Spartan apples (one of my favourites) left.

When it comes to exercise, warming up is important, before cutting wood which will be used next winter, I always do some stretches and get my muscles warm before I start really going for it with the axe. In cold weather warming up well really reduces the risk of sprains etc.

On top of this, essential oils make a real difference.  I use a wide range of oils on a weekly basis and all have some degree of antibacterial and antiviral action. Doing a lot of massage, I absorb the oils through my skin just as do my clients. I believe this is part of the reason I can go for years without catching the flu and indeed get through most years without any colds!

Oils that particularly help I believe include, lemon, eucalyptus (all varieties), tea tree, myrrh and many others. Why not book an aromatherapy massage either in Trumpington or Central Cambridge to try  and boost your chances of getting through the festive season without going down with anything? £5 off first appointments booked before 7th January.

Call 07939273569 or email dave@cambridgearomatherapy.com for an appointment.


A Winter Warmer

There are a lot of oils that might be associated with Christmas, the Solstice and indeed Winter in general. Oils that encourage us to look inside ourselves and aid meditation, just as plants draw their energies down into their roots before the exciting rush of growth in the spring. Frankincense and Myrrh are two of these.

Other oils of the season are the warming oils from spices that are used in many festive recipes. Ginger, Cinnamon, nutmeg along with the citrus oils that are light and help to keep our energy moving, Lemon  for clarity of thought, Bergamot which helps counter depression and Seasoned Affective Disorder.

I expect to be using all these oils a lot in the coming weeks but if you don’t have them in your home why not make either a mulled wine or mulled apple juice with the spices instead? You can add some slices of citrus to the mix and you can burn a good quality incense as well to complete the mix.

Another alternative is to book an aromatherapy massage in Trumpington or Central Cambridge. Phone  07939273569 or email dave@cambridgearomatherapy.com


Winter warmer.

I welcome the colder weather. It gives me the chance to enjoy the wood stove, my bees will consume less of what they have stored for the winter as they are less active and because the queen will lay fewer eggs, the break in brood production will reduce any problems due to varroa mites. Fruit trees will do better too. – They need a period of cold weather in order to produce fruit the following year so I am really pleased that we have already had more frosts than the whole of last winter! abdominal-massage-14172846

And with Christmas approaching, I am using a lot of Frankincense essential oil in my skin balms but also a lot in my massage practice too. As shopping becomes more hectic I find more clients need an oil that takes them down into themselves and their roots, just as the fruit trees do, They stop growing till late winter/the start of spring.

So if you are in need of some time to reflect, to build up your reserves even if just to face the fray of the shops or the internet why not give me a call on 07939273569 or email dave@cambridgearomatherapy.com to book an aromatherapy massage either here in Trumpington or at the Salus wellness centre in Norfolk street, just a stone’s throw from the Grafton Centre.


October and a nip in the air.

No frost yet, but the first of the season may not be far away, even in Trumpington and Cambridge. This means a careful eye on the forecast as we don’t want our squashes to get damaged by the frost when if brought in at just the right time they can last till May or even June!

woodstoveAs for massage, it means I have to make sure the room is warm enough before I start. During the summer, my test was if the coconut oil I use for massage is liquid, then I don’t need any room heating, otherwise I still need a little. No need for a test now. If I am doing massage at home in Trumpington, I light the wood stove. At my practice in Central Cambridge I put the central heating on a good half hour before the massage is due to start. It is only into the winter and then only if it gets really cold that I have to use central heating at home as well as the stove or at the Salus Clinic an electric heater as well as the central heating. The one exception being that if I don’t have a full half hour in the room before the appointment, I might use an electric heater for ten minutes to warm the room up and then turn it off.

So, if you are someone who really feels the cold why not book an aromatherapy massage in a room guaranteed to be warm enough for you to enjoy the experience.

07939273569 ordave@cambridgearomatherapy.com


Seasonal Massage

IMG_8863The changes in the massage won’t be noticed by all but if someone has just come in from the cold of winter and still hasn’t warmed up properly by the time the massage starts, I need to spend more time warming the muscles up before I use the maximum pressure for that individual.By contrast if the temperature is 25C or greater outside then a deeper massage is possible much more quickly. (I know most of those here in UK will be laughing at the idea of 25C or greater!

Another thing that  changes is the the different oils I use. During winter I am much more likely to use oils like tea tree, lemon, and myrrh which are all good in helping to fight infections. I also use more of the warming, nurturing oils like cinnamon and vanilla. During summer I am find myself utilising more of the cooling oils like coriander and melissa. (lemon balm)

Of course I all of the oils will be right for some clients whatever the time of year. Some chronic conditions such as ME or Arthritis don’t go away even thought he presentation might change a bit.

A lot of the changes also reflect the differences directly due to the seasons. Seasonal affective disorder means mild depression is much more common, peaking about now in February after the darkest days are over but before the increase in light has done it’s job.

For an aromatherapy massage  in Cambridge tailored to your needs, whatever the season,

Call 07939 273 569 or email dave@cambridgearomatherapy.com


Winter will carry on till Spring!


Was the satirical headline I saw posted on Facebook the other day. Others have included, “Shock at cold weather expected this winter.”

I welcome the cold. It helps to cut down on many pests in the garden, reduces the problems bees have with varroa because the lay the eggs in the brood cells and a prolonged cold period means no eggs laid and no brood. So I am hoping that the frosty weather continues for a few weeks. The picture shows a living willow screen being planted around the apiary on Trumpington Allotments in January 2012. It has established well and means the bees fly upwards on leaving the hives rather than across people’s plots at head hight. It also provides a windbreak and early pollen and nectar for the bees.

Crops that do better with a cold spell include apples and other top fruit, apples requiring the longest chill period which can be up to 42 days below 7C. When they get this period both the yield and quality of the fruit are improved. Even citrus such as orange need this though the temperature for them is much higher!

So if you are at all interested in complementary therapies, don’t wish away the cold too much as many of the plants used to provide the remedies rely on periods of cold. Even those associated with warmer climes mostly need the (for those areas) colder weather of winter to produce well.


Winter for the bees.

The temperature is finally dropping a bit, though still not enough for the bees to form into their tight winter cluster yet, or at least not here in Cambridge. This mean that they will be more active, the queen still laying although  at nothing like the rate she does in late spring/early summer when she can lay 2,000 eggs a day or more!

This means bee keeping activity is now largely about preparing equipment for next year when things get busy again in the spring and of course checking that they still have sufficient stores of food. Paradoxically the relatively mild weather means they will consume more food not less as they will be more active and flying more. They consume a lot less food in a really hard winter.

It also means I will have time to melt more beeswax into olive oil to make hand-cream or skin-balm/ointment as it could more accurately be called.

I will be making up several batches of this over the next few weeks in order to have them to sell at the Seedy Sunday event in Trumpington. I may also have some more consultations to make some up for specific conditions which is useful for those who feel uncomfortable with massage or who want to treat themselves between sessions.