Traditional Chinese Medicine and Autumn

fall-autumn-colors-leavesAs the first few weeks of fall our upon us, we will begin to notice many changes occurring in our environment. The temperature drops, the winds bring a chill foreshadowing the winter ahead, and the trees put on a lovely display of colors before dropping their leaves to conserve their energy for the cold months ahead.  Within our own bodies, many shifts happen as well.  Allergies are quite common as our immune systems attempt to keep up with the transformation going on around us.  We may also experience changes in mood as the days get shorter and our exposure to sunlight decreases.  In Chinese Medicine, this is the season of “metal”; one of the five elements along with wind, earth, water and fire.

The goal of Chinese Medicine is to create balance within each element. A person whose metal balance is out of alignment may experience sadness, grief and being overly critical of themselves and others. As metal energy is connected to the lung & large intestine meridians, they may also suffer from asthma, allergies and colds. The lung meridian also rules the skin, so rashes and eczema may result from a metal imbalance. The large intestine meridian is more closely related to the digestive system so constipation or diarrhea can occur. These symptoms can become more prominent with the change from summer to fall.

There are a few things everyone can do to nurture themselves during this time of change. Being sure to get enough sleep and drink warm fluids can support keeping the body healthy. Teas such as Echinacea, elderberry, and eucalyptus are all good for lung health. Ginger, nettle, and sage are good teas to promote digestive health. With every season change, doing a cleanse can be a great way to renew the body. May your fall be healthy and prosperous.

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