Chinese Medicine Health Principles in Summer

OPTIMISE YOUR HEALTH IN SUMMER

Summer is considered the most yang time in the yearly cycle where yang dominates yin. Yang is the external, outward moving, male, sun, hot, fast, extroverted energy that can be seen in nature which is alive with activity and growth at the moment.

In Chinese medicine summer is the fire element and relates to the heart, blood and mind. Common health conditions that can occur during summer include fatigue, anger, irritability, nervousness, excessive sweating, heartburn, insomnia, depression and generally feeling lousy.

FOLLOW THESE GUIDELINES FOR A HEALTHY SUMMER

  1. Awake early and go to bed later: wake early for exercise and get to bed later, leaving at least an hour or two before midnight.
  2. Rest or meditate at midday: midday is the most yang time of day. Taking a quick nap or meditation will allow you to absorb more yang energy from the sun. You want to store this yang energy for a strong immune system in the winter months.
  3. Exercise: move your body and express your yang energy. Exercise is most ideal in the early morning and make a point of getting outdoors into the fresh air.
  4. Eat yin foods: summer is the perfect time to eat lighter cooling foods to counteract the summer heat. Focus on watermelon, green leafy vegetables, apricot, lemon, sprouts, bok choy, cucumber, snow peas, spinach, seaweed, mint and dill. 
  5. Drink plenty of water: each morning arise and drink 2 glasses of water with lemon. This will hydrate and alkalise your body. After 2 weeks you’ll be looking and feeling great.

Have you got any other ideas? I’d love to hear from you.

PHOTOGRAPH BY SARAHBERNIER COURTESY OF PIXABAY

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© 2015 - Dr Paul Carter

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