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Spring: the secret to improve your well-being

Would you like to know what relationship spring and Chinese medicine have? Would you like to know how to optimise your health for this season?

If you want to feel better and more balanced during the spring season read on to know more.

According to Chinese medicine spring is associated with:

  • element: wood
  • colour: green
  • taste: sour
  • organ systems: liver and gallbladder

Emotions in spring

Angry face in spring

These organs are at their peak activity during this season and it’s the perfect time to support their function.

It is the time of the year dedicated to creating, cleansing, activity and movement, growth and renewal. Spring is the best time to improve your emotional well-being.

Why? Because the liver in Chinese Medicine is responsible for the smooth flow of blood, energy and emotions throughout your body.

It’s the organ that is most affected by stuck emotions and stress and therefore can cause emotional build-ups and physical tension anywhere but mostly in the upper back, traps and neck region.

Exercise and movement

Spring is a time of creativity and planning. Lots of projects see the light during this season. The renewed energy boost after the sleepy winter months make this a very dynamic season. Increased flow of blood and energy in your body reflects the natural need for more physical activities, especially outside.

Rejoice of the longer days, be in touch with nature and spend more time exercising and walking outdoors and soaking in the fresh oxygenated air.

Healthiest foods for spring

Strawberries for spring

As we mentioned above green is the colour of spring and sour is its associated taste, therefore the best foods to support a healthy liver and gallbladder function are greens and sour foods.

Here a list of some seasonal fruits and vegetables that you can easily incorporate into your diet:

  • cucumber
  • celery
  • basil
  • grapefruit
  • carrot
  • broccoli
  • lettuce
  • zucchini
  • artichoke
  • spinach
  • sweet pepper
  • leek
  • pea
  • eggplant
  • strawberry
  • apple
  • mandarin
  • pear
  • green leafy vegetable in general
  • sour foods
  • fennel
  • peppermint
  • spring onion
  • legumes
  • oranges
  • green tea

Reasons to get acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment

  1. Muscle stiffness and tension: muscles and tendons might feel stiff, inflexible and even painful because of the lack of movement throughout the winter season. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can help. The liver and the gallbladder nourish the tendons and keep them flexible. A lack of drinking can also affect the muscles and the joints. Acupuncture can stimulate the flow of blood and energy to the muscles and joints to stretch them and make them more flexible.
  2. Irritability or anger: this is typically an emotion which is felt predominantly during the spring. Many of my patients report it during this time of the year. This is because the main emotion associated with the liver is anger. If the liver is not functioning freely, it can lead to anger and irritability. Acupuncture is a great way to unstuck the energy flow from the liver and make you feel calmer and more relaxed.
  3. Irritated eyes: in Chinese medicine physiology “the liver opens into the eyes”. Therefore any eye issues are usually related to a liver imbalance. This may include dry eyes, fatigued ayes, itchy eyes, swollen eyes, red and painful eyes caused by allergies. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine have shown to be effective to alleviate these problems.
  4. Support your immune system: changes of season are particularly sensitive for every organ. Be mindful of the temperature changes and balance your daily activities and your nutrition (read this article for more suggestions) to prevent getting sick.

There are herbs which are known to offer support for your liver and gallbladder. Your practitioner can recommend the best formulas for you.

The secret of maintaining healthy in spring

Here a few suggestions you can implement for a healthier spring:

  • sleep early and wake early (we get naturally more energy through the longer and warmer days and can sleep less than in the winter)
  • do more vigorous exercises
  • meditate and take long walks in the park or in the woods
  • take advantage of the warmer weather to be more outdoors, possibly in nature where the predominant colour is green
  • protect yourself from the wind, the weak spot is the neck
  • eat seasonal foods
  • drink and hydrate sufficiently
  • eat mostly warm and cooked foods, and some cold and raw foods
  • strengthen your immune system with acupuncture or/and herbal supplements, Chinese Medicine offers several options especially formulated for the change of season. I highly suggest to find a Chinese medicine practitioner trained in herbal medicine

Enjoy the energy of the spring and stay healthy and happy!