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Living in harmony with the seasons according to Chinese Medicine

Living in harmony with the seasons according to Chinese Medicine
As the temperature slowly begins to rise, our energy starts to lift. Spring represents a new beginning after our long hibernation during the winter months.
Energetically, spring is all about expansion, moving upwards and outwards. We find ourselves feeling more outgoing, more sociable and more motivated. New inspiration and ideas appear all around us.
As beautiful spring is, clients come to me, especially in the early months of spring, experiencing intense feelings of irritability, often accompanied with anxiety, frustration or depression.
A guiding principal in Chinese Medicine is by living and harmonising yourself with the seasons, you are able to cultivate your health and prevent disease. The season of spring is associated with the element of wood and it corresponds to the liver. As everything around us blossoms in the spring, so too should we embrace this time. But the liver tends to be a bit of a bully for many people and it must be kept in check. Often the winter months leave some stagnant feelings, which can manifest in different areas like relationships, work or even our bodies. If there is frustration, physical pain or sadness, it may be a sign that energy is not flowing properly or optimally.
When the Liver is functioning properly on the other hand, there is a smooth functionality within our bodies on both an emotional and physical level and we experience an internal sense of freedom and expansiveness.
Regulating the Liver through diet, lifestyle, acupuncture, herbal medicine, stretches and physical movement can help release Liver constriction and encourage its natural smooth flow.
Take these simple steps to harmonise your Liver with the expanding energy of spring:
  1. Stretch. The liver controls the tendons. According to Chinese medicine, the liver stores blood during periods of rest and then releases it to the tendons in times of activity, maintaining tendon health and flexibility. Incorporate a morning stretch into your routine.
  2. Move. While exercise is important year round, the connections between spring, the Liver, and anger makes this time of year especially important to have a good exercise routine. Sooth your Liver for example by walking in nature for 20-30 minutes 3-4x/ week or by joining a yoga class.
  3. Eat your Greens. The Liver is associated with the colour green. Take advantage of the new spring growth and increase your consumption of kale, sprouts, spring onion, bok choi, watercress, and other green vegetables.
  4. Add sour to your diet. The flavour related to the Liver is sour. Add a slice of fresh lemon or to a glass of water every morning or have a freshly squeezed grapefruit juice. This aids both digestive and emotional health.
  5. Stay bundled up. In Springtime the weather is unpredictable and so we need to be more careful about exposure to cold or getting chilled. In Chinese medicine, the are at the nape of the neck and upper-back is referred to as the “Wind-Gate” and therefore very susceptible to wind chills which can lead to colds. Wearing a scarf will protect your neck from the cold wind.
  6. Acupuncture (of course!) Acupuncture works directly to bring you back into balance by harmonising your Liver and attuning you to spring. Acupuncture can balance the body as it reacts to the changes in the weather and activity levels. Regular acupuncture treatments have been shown to boost immunity, help with seasonal allergies, sneezing, runny nose or watery eyes. But most of all, acupuncture can help regulate those emotional imbalances that are often common during this transitional period.
If you would like to find out more about how to stay healthy this spring book in with our TCM practitioner Isabella Buirski in Coogee/Randwick or Bondi Junction.
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