Summer is now continuing to be warm and sunny, despite a wet week – much needed for the garden.
Summer means warmth and heat (as we have experienced recently). In Chinese medicine, keeping warm, giving warmth and heat is very important. Often, in my clinic, physical pain and injury is often greatly improved by using a lit moxa stick, which is wafted over the injured part of the body, warming it up and thus relaxing the painful muscles, ligaments etc.. Moxa is a herb (mugwort) which when dried and lit, generates substantial heat. My patients find it most beneficial and several take moxa sticks home , to apply in their own homes. I also use rolled up moxa cones on acupoints – again the heat from the moxa can increase the effectiveness of the point being needled.
Chinese medicine is full of advice on how to keep ourselves working at optimum, by keeping our bodies warm. We should never walk on bare floors bare foot. There is an important Kidney acupoint on the soles of our feet, which links with the Kidney. In Chinese medicine, the Kidney is a most important organ, our powerhouse. Subjecting it frequently to Cold (the bare floor) means it will not work as well as it should.
Food should always be served either at room temperature or heated/cooked. Eating straight from the fridge impedes the work the stomach has to do. The stomach plays a very important role in Chinese medicine especially in the production of good energy, so how can it be expected to work well if ice cold food is thrown into it?
Our predilection for iced drinks, whatever the weather , is a case in point. The stomach has to put up with the endless cold showers that we drink down, which simply does not help it in digesting and breaking down our food. Interestingly, in Europe, when you ask for a jug of water, it rarely comes with ice.
So, try to use ice sparingly this summer and at least serve fruit at room temperature. You will also find it tastes better! As for injuries – come to my clinic and I will show you how to use a moxa stick with care, for relief.
According to Chinese medicine, we are now into summer and this last week has been a scorcher for everyone!
Summer is all about abundant energy (Yang), warm long days and sunshine (at least some of the time). Summer is about growth – look at our gardens – expansion and expansiveness, activity and creativity. It is in the summer that we feel most active – the DIY shops are at their busiest – and also eady to have fun and enjoy ourselves.
To remain in harmony with the season, we should wake earlier in the mornings – those who have young children may have noticed this – and go later to bed. A siesta in the early afternoon keeps us out of the heat of the sun and allows us to
We need to drink plenty of fluids, especially water. 10 cups of tea is no good if you don’t drink the equivalent in water.
Try to eat cooling foods such as fruit, especially strawberries, water melon and peaches, vegetables such as lettuce and cucumber, watercress broccoli, pak choi , chicken and fish. However, if you wish to eat a lot of salads, make sure you chew them properly. Otherwise, vital energy is used up in the breaking down of raw food.
Typical summer complaints are heat exhaustion, sunburn, insomnia, high blood pressure, constipation, irritability, headaches. Acupuncture, is ,of course, of great help for these complaints!
Spring has now truly sprung. The yellows and whites of daffodils have now given way to all the colours in the spectrum – various shades of tulips from yellow to orange to red, blue iris’s, the hot pink and bright orange of azaleas, delicate and deep pink and white of tree blossoms (did you see the all the cherry blossoms of Japan, known as Sakura on Spring watch?).
Nature is particularly colourful at this time of year, also with all its new fresh green growth seen especially on trees now slowly coming into bud. Spring is a time of renewal, rebirth echoed in nature. Birds making nests and hatching out their young, lambs being born in the fields. It is a time of get up and go and busyness, after the long, cold hibernation of winter. It is a time for new ideas, for new plans, new starts.
Patients can come with complaints of seasonal maladies – migraines/headaches, hay fever, aching limbs and muscles. Some patients need easing into the season, unwilling to wake up fully to the upsurge of energy that Spring brings. Five element acupuncture takes the seasons into account; there are various “seasonal” points that can be used, where necessary. So if you feel you need a seasonal boost, don’t hesitate to get in touch.