Nothing reminds us more of Spring than the budding of flowers. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), that bud represents an intense pool of energy (Qi) that starts the formation of life forces. We use this potent Qi from flower buds often in Chinese Herbal medicine such as using Chrysanthemum flowers for eye health and infections. Spring represents a time of renewal, new life and new transitions.
So what are the TCM practices during this season that we can do to keep our body in balance with nature around us? Our Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) guide for the Spring season:
When we think of spring we think of spring cleaning. Cleaning your house and workspace is important, but so is your body. When is the last time you had a tune up for your internal house (body)?
Spring is a new beginning and is related to the color green in TCM – signifying plants growing through the earth. It is the season to take care of the Liver whose element is Wood and Spring.
How can you give the Liver a break and move with the natural rhythms of spring? (a) Eat lightly. Our Livers help us get rid of the stagnation and toxin congestion we might have accumulated during the winter. Leave behind the heavier foods of winter, especially meats and dairy products, can help you move into spring feeling lighter. (b) Eat green. Young, tender shoots like asparagus and bean sprouts, and anything green and leafy such as kale and romaine, aid in detoxifying the Liver. If your digestion is weak, stick to cooked vegetables as opposed to raw, which require more energy to digest. (c) Assist the Liver gently. You can help the Liver’s cleansing function by drinking Chrysanthemum tea or Green tea. Chrysanthemum can help clear out toxins and green tea can help boost the Qi energy to assist in organ function.
Did you know that we have Acupuncture packages at the clinic? Pre-pay for a block of visits and receive a discount! Packages are not transferable, however, they do not expire. If currently you invest in your retirement, have you thought about investing in your health so you may enjoy your retirement at the best possible quality of life? Ask at the clinic next time you are in or click here for more info: http://redtreewellness.ca/rates/
Continuing on in our series of TCM Wellness Tips, we have Tui Na massage tips from Sheralyn Hoiland, BSc, RAc.
Spring is the time of growth and movement. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Spring is represented by the Liver (and Gallbladder) which helps move the Qi through the body. Smooth flow of Liver Qi is important and when it starts to slow or gets blocked, we may find ourselves feeling frustrated, stressed or even angry.
Acupuncture and Tui Na are good to achieve smooth flow of Qi and to rectify any blockages. Stretching and outdoor activities are also a good way to get your Qi moving. At home you can pat the lateral sides of your thighs with open hands or with loose fists. This will stimulate the Qi in the gallbladder channel, but be warned you may find some sensitive spots, where you already have some blockages. Another area which you can massage is down your shin bone (yes the bone) and over the top of your foot between your big and second toe. Use the side or pad of your thumb and rub your shin (again, you may find some sensitive spots). If you find sensitive spots you can use the pad of your thumb and massage the points in small circles or slowly press and release. Try these simple ways to move your qi, wake you up and decrease stress.
— Sheralyn Hoiland, BSc, RAc
Enjoy the new life of Spring and finding that balance helps keep everything flowing well in body, mind and spirit.
Yours in good health and happiness,
Sonia & the Red Tree Wellness team