Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Seasons

TCM pays particular attention to the  effects of the  seasons on the body, the following articles advises on diet and exercise according to th e time of year

The Way Of Spring

The three months of Spring

Are called springing up and unfolding

Heaven and Earth together produce life


At night, one goes to bed,at dawn ,one gets up.

One paces in the courtyard with great strides,

Hair loose,body at ease,

Exerting the will of life


This ancient text from Daoist philosophy highlights the nature of spring, a time of new beginnings and activity.Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is steeped in Daoism and relates the nature of spring to the functions of the liver and gall bladder.The liver in TCM thought,promotes the free flow of Qi (energy) on a physical and emotional level.A harmonious liver equates to calmness and if impeded, our body fails to move freely , women can suffer menstrual problems such as Pre- Menstrual Tension, we may become "stuck" in life, suffering from depression or bouts of anger.The liver acupuncture channel flows to the eyes, maintaining eyesight and the colour of new green plants in spring are particularly beneficial.

TCM incorporates the use of herbs,Acupuncture , specific exercise called Qi Gong and diet to promote the free circulation of energy in the body.Therefore we can do much to help ourselves with specific diet and exercise in Spring.

In Spring we may be more inclined to Spring clean the house,likewise, a spring clean for the body helps us clear away excesses of winter eating and a more sedentary  lifestyle.Spring is the perfect time to follow a detox diet, keeping our intake "light", by eating more fruit and vegetables,less processed foods such as sugar,refined flour,fats,salt,diary and avoiding over eating.Foods to help nourish and clean the Liver in particular are: young plants (beets and carrots),fresh greens and sprouted foods,which can be cooked for shorter periods at higher temperatures.The Liver loves pungent flavours including mint,honey,basil,fennel,rosemary,bay leaf, dill,onion and garlic.

In Spring we may be more inclined to Spring clean the house,likewise, a spring clean for the body helps us clear away excesses of winter eating and a more sedentary  lifestyle.Spring is the perfect time to follow a detox diet, keeping our intake "light", by eating more fruit and vegetables,less processed foods such as sugar,refined flour,fats,salt,diary and avoiding over eating.Foods to help nourish and clean the Liver in particular are: young plants (beets and carrots),fresh greens and sprouted foods,which can be cooked for shorter periods at higher temperatures.The Liver loves pungent flavours including mint,honey,basil,fennel,rosemary,bay leaf, dill,onion and garlic.

With exercise, the Liver is nourished by keeping the body supple, by stretching,going for walks and cycling in particular.Sideways bends and twisting movements stretch the Liver meridian. Creativity taps into the Liver energy , so try painting, sculpture and singing.Deep abdominal breathing helps the flow of Qi.Rest and Mindfulness is important to add balance.

Liver Qi Gong~ Take the Qi Gong stance,in a relaxed position, legs hip width apart,knees slightly bent, stretch out the arms to the sides, shoulder height,with palms facing out, to increase the stretch the hands can be bent inward. Hold for as long as feels good.Then stretch the arms above the head.And relax.