Spring and Chinese Medicine
Spring is the lovely season of new growth, re-birth and change. As the seasons change, trees, plants and the human body change with them. When we learn to live in harmony with the laws of nature we can more readily access health and wellbeing, while resistance to change can cause stress and difficulty in our everyday lives. According to Chinese Medical theory, Spring is the time to support the element of Wood which correlates to the Liver and Gallbladder organs as well as the tendons and ligaments. To help keep the Liver and Gallbladder in balance, bring your attention to exercise, nutrition, self-awareness and self-expression.
Spring is the season of new beginnings and creativity. Creativity reminds us of who we are and is a good way to bring harmony and joy into our lives, particularly during this seasonal transition. Stay open to new ideas, environments, and perspectives while letting go of things from the past that are burdensome. Now is a good time for spring-cleaning of your home. Get rid of clutter and old stuff that is no longer needed to make way for the new.
There must also be room for growth within the mind and body or energy will get clogged and the system will stagnate. Liver stagnation is a common condition that can arise during the spring, and common symptoms of this include irritability, tension, inappropriate anger, PMS, depression, and anxiety. Mental relaxation will promote an open and peaceful mind while supporting focus and clear decision-making. Regular exercise is particularly important in the Spring as physical activity will assist the body in moving internal stagnation from the reduced activity of winter.
Good springtime nutrition includes the naturally cleansing foods that are becoming available now. These foods help the body clear internal stagnation by gently cleansing the system without depleting the body. Vegetables: artichokes, arugula, asparagus, baby greens, English peas, fava beans, fennel, leeks, spring onion, pea shoots, radish, snap peas, sorrel, sprouts, turnips, and watercress. Fruits: lemons, grapefruit, kumquats, mandarins, strawberries. Herbs, spices, & condiments: cilantro, mint, parsley, apple cider vinegar, umeboshi plums and umeboshi plum vinegar, raw sauerkrauts. Grains: rice.
Wishing you all a happy and healthy Spring!