The 5th Season: Late Summer. Are you starting to worry?
Traditional Chinese Medicine has an extra season which we are nearing the end of right now. It's called Late Summer; dominated by the Spleen. Whether you are aware of this or not, you are probably feeling the effects. TCM Acupuncturists know that changes of seasons are big transition times that could reveal or trigger underlying heath issues. One quick way to check to see if you're in need of a little extra support is to ask yourself how your mood has been in the last couple of weeks.
Have you been catching yourself worrying or ruminating over your thoughts? Are little things becoming overwhelming? Worry or overthinking are Late Summer/Earth/Spleen/Stomach expressions of imbalance. Similarly, regret and the inability to 'let go of the past' are Fall/Metal/Lung/Large Intestine signs of imbalance (be prepared for this in the next couple of weeks). Attention to these emotions at this time of year can help us discover a proper treatment plan for you.
Stress, as we all know is fact of life. How we manage our day to day challenges is a reflection of our health. For example, if stress empowers us to work harder, focus more clearly and get excited over upcoming positive change, then your body is strong and able. Conversely, if ongoing stress makes you feel overwhelmed or irritable, and increases your worry, anxiety or regrets, then you may need a tune-up to allow you to view this change of season and life in a more positive light.
Change is a wonderful and necessary part of life. Just as each season positively embraces change and elegantly lets go when their time is up to make room for the next stage to come, so should you. If you need a little boost to encourage your body to get you there, you know where to find us!
Bonus TCM Knowledge!
Every body has a dominant element that brings out the best and worst in us. Since this is the season of the Earth element, I will go over some helpful information to encourage you to become as happy, healthy and empowered as possible during the most challenging of seasons for you.
People with a weak Earth Qi may be:
*worriers and meddlers
*prone to pensiveness
*over-workers - especially with studying or other intellectual work
*vulnerable to digestive problems
*gain weight easily and lose it with difficulty
*commonly suffer from cloudy thinking, fuzzy-headedness and a lack of clarity
Common illnesses include:
*gas and bloating
*food allergies and sensitivities
*swelling and bruising
What can you do to feel better?
*Limit cold, raw foods and dairy products (eating these should encourage your lethargy, phlegm, weight-gain, etc)
*Increase cooked foods (such as oatmeal, soups, stews, etc.) Orange foods such as yams, roasted carrots, pumpkin and squash are particularly beneficial
*Exercise: find time before or after work for exercise to minimize stress on your body
*Be in Nature: away from the stress of technology and constant alerts
*Personal time: please make time for rest away from work and family. Stress-reducing acupuncture treatments can make such a difference for your emotional, mental and physical well-being!