Summer-The Season of Yang



The summer,  in Chinese Medicine, belongs to fire, one of the five elements.  Fire is symbolic of maximum activity or greatest Yang, which means that it is the time of heat,  and moving outward into nature and in our lives.  The heart, mind and spirit are ruled by the fire element.  When the fire element is in balance, the heart is strong,  the mind is calm and sleep is sound.  When it is unbalanced, there may be symptoms of depression, anxiety, nervousness, heart burn, and insomnia.  Acupuncture and herbs help to balance the fire element.

Summer, cooling (yin) foods are: cantalope, citrus, peaches, apricots, asian pears, cucumber, asparagus, broccoli, bok choy, white mushrooms, spinach, dill and cilantro. Watermelon, pink grapefruit and guava are also cooling to help quench thirst and keep us hydrated, as well as sipping on  mint tea, chrysanthemum tea,  water with lemon & cucumber or lemon & fresh mint .  Avoid heavier oily foods and foods that create heat like spices, hot peppers and garlic.

Tips for summer health: awakening earlier in the morning, afternoon naps…  especially when we feel overheated, because the body naturally cools down when we rest.   Essential oil spray:  mix  6-10 drops of  peppermint or lavender oil ( by Aura Acacia)  into  6-8 oz. water and  spray on  legs, feet or on pillows and sheets, to clear summer heat from the body.  Aura Acacia essential oils are at our office or at whole foods.

And most importantly, it’s summer….take time to nourish your spirit with some joyful jaunts in nature, sitting with your feet in the grass or sand while taking some deep breaths.