Chinese Medicine and Staying Healthy this Fall

In Chinese medicine, fall is associated with the metal element. It is comprised of the lung and large intestine meridians. It is especially important to support these organ systems during this time of the year, as they become susceptible to illness when weakened. This may be in the form of cold and bronchial issues, influenza, digestive disturbances, skin irritation and dryness, asthma attacks, and even emotional disturbances like grief and sadness. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to strengthen your body's defense mechanisms.

The easiest thing you can do at home is to practice deep breathing exercises to strengthen your lungs. It may sound simple, but many of us are not even aware of the depth of our breathing. Deep breathing not only activates your lungs, but helps to improve memory, energy levels and our immune system. It is a vital piece of wellness. So get out and go for a crisp autumn walk and fill your lungs!

I always tell my patients to eat for the season. As temperatures start to decrease, it is important to begin eating less of those summer, cooling foods (like raw foods) and to start eating warmer, more cooked, heartier foods.  To support the large intestine, I recommend eating more soups and squashes to help your body transition into the new season more easily.

Because the metal element within us gives us our sense of self worth, this is the season to give yourself some extra self love. Really focus on seeking value internally rather than externally, from people or things around us. Instead, practice positive self talk and words of affirmation and be gracious with yourself. Sleep a little longer, read a good book, eat nourishing foods and slow down!

There are several acupuncture points that balance your body and help with the transitioning of seasons, effectively targeting specific physical and emotional conditions. Typically this can be done within a few sessions. They are quick, easy and relaxing, and last about 30 minutes. The points are located on your hands and arms, chest and upper back. Occasionally, a specialized chinese herbal remedy is used in facilitating acupuncture points.

If you are interested in learning more, and wonder if traditional chinese medicine might be a good addition to your wellness regimen, give us a call today! We are always happy to provide a complementary consultation and look forward to helping you live a happier, healthier life!

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