Summer is finally upon us! As we are rejoicing that the season of sun is here our lovely team member and TCM practitioner Lauren has put together a guide all about summer based on Chinese medicine wisdom, and what the season of summer represents. Understanding the energy that summer brings is a great way to harness this time of year and make the most of it. Living in sync with the seasons is one of the key teachings of Chinese medicine and an amazing way to enhance your health and wellbeing.

In Chinese medicine, summer is seen as the most Yang time of the year. Yang energy is bright, warm, expansive, light, creative, active and full of abundance. As this is reflected in nature, it also reflects what is happening inside our bodies. Summer is a time of growth!

During winter we withdraw and cultivate our energy, in spring we begin to emerge and summer is the time to fully enjoy life to our greatest potential and reap what we have been energetically manifesting throughout the year.

A guiding principal in Chinese medicine is that by living and harmonising yourself with the seasons, you are able to cultivate your health and prevent disease. Therefore summer is the perfect time to give your Heart some extra attention and love. To live in harmony with the summer time, we rise early to drink in the morning sun for nourishment, just as the flowers do. The sun is Yang in nature (the moon is Yin) and safe sun exposure helps to build the Yang in our bodies.

In Chinese medicine, each season has an associated organ, for summer this is the Heart. Energetically the Heart is seen as the emperor of the organs and represents consciousness of our beings; it is responsible for intelligence, wisdom and spiritual transformation.

‘’When the emperor is happy, the whole town is happy.’’

Some powerful ways to help strengthen and support the Heart during this time is to drink lots of fresh water, eat cooling foods, trust your intuition, engage your senses (go smell some flowers!), and be active. When the Heart is in balance, the mind is calm, we sleep deeply and wake feeling rested. Signs the Heart may be imbalanced can be a lack of joy, depression, anxiety, an excess of joy (mania), nervousness, insomnia, heartburn, poor memory and palpitations.

Summer is the time we can completely indulge in brightly coloured fruits and vegetables and enjoy creating beautiful meals. Some foods to enjoy during summer include; apples, watermelon, strawberries, lemons, limes, salads, sprouts, cucumber, mint and chamomile tea. Eating less and lightly on hot days is a natural healthy practice.

Regular Acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatments are a fantastic way to support and strengthen the body and especially the Heart during the summer months. Your practitioner can guide you through lifestyle and dietary choices to best suit your health and wellbeing and thrive this summer!