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black eyed susans

Summer is fast approaching. The days are getting longer and the weather is much warmer.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, we observe nature and seasonal changes to learn how to stay healthy.

In fact, if we deeply listen to our bodies, we will also notice that our bodies naturally change with the seasons.

In Chinese Medicine, Summer is the season of the Heart organ.

By living in harmony with the Summer, we can strengthen the health of the Heart. Imbalances that come up from problems with the Heart organ include heart health, high blood pressure, mental health (particularly stress, nervousness, anxiety, and depression), insomnia and sleep issues.

If you already experience these, then this is an important season to focus on your health. I recommend that you seek support from a Chinese Medicine practitioner to help you heal.

In the next posts I will discuss specific foods and herbs to powerfully support and strengthen the Heart organ to keep your body balanced. In this post, I will discuss some lifestyle factors that you can implement to boost seasonal health.

Summer is the season of abundant growth.

Nutritionally, this means we have lots of local fresh fruits and vegetables available. Have fun creating beautiful meals with a variety of colorful vegetables. In the Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is now seasonally appropriate to eat more raw foods or to lightly cook your foods- gently steam or stir-fry. It is appropriate to eat “lighter” foods- fresh fruit, salads, grains, legumes, eggs, and fish.

If you already have a tendency to have excess heat, you will probably not enjoy the Summer heat. Heat symptoms include easily feeling heated, hot flashes, flushing and redness of the face, headaches worsened by the heat/sun, sweating, and quick to anger, rage, and be irritable. If this is the case, cooling foods will be especially helpful. Also find ways to “cool down” emotionally by meditating, practicing deep breathing, taking long walks, exercising, and decreasing stress in your life.

Enjoy the natural increase of energy in the Summer. At the same time, you don’t want to go overboard with overactivity. You do want to conserve some of this energy so that you don’t run yourself down. You want to have ample energy for the rest of the year.

Summer is also the season of abundant growth of self.

It’s the time to follow-through on plans and goals and bring them to fruition. It’s a time to be motivated to work and get things done. It’s also a time to socialize, collaborate with others, and play. The energy of the summer is expressed through brightness, creativity, and liveliness. Summer is also a time to wake up early in the morning and bask in the increased amount of light.

Have fun this Summer!

After all, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the emotion associated with the Summer season is joy. 

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