In Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners long ago observed the relationship between the seasons and the conditions they would see in clients. This observation evolved into a system of advice for the seasons to support the specific needs associated with that season.
Autumn in Traditional Chinese Medicine is related to the energy of the Lungs and Large Intestine.
How do you know if there is something going on with your Lungs and Large Intestine energy?
- The lungs and the large intestine are a major pathway of elimination and related to a healthy immune system. Problems in this area are a clue that all is not well.
- The Lungs and Large Intestine are also related to exhalation, sweating (excessive and insufficient), elimination of toxins (through the skin and bowel) and elimination of urine.
- Issues with the large intestine, will often appear in the skin as issues of rashes, itching and irritation.
- When the lung energy is out of balance, we tend to be inflexible in our ways and stiff in our bodies.
When the Lung and Large Intestines are impaired, ailments may include bronchitis, shortness of breath, cough, allergies, nasal congestion, emphysema, colds, sore throat, constipation, diarrhoea, spastic colon, and abdominal pain. These physical imbalances can then compound our emotions leading to depression, stubbornness (inability to “let go”), isolation, and negativity.
Things to do to support yourself in Autumn (and pep up your Lungs and Large Intestine)..
- Eat pungent foods such as garlic, onions, ginger, mustard, horseradish and watercress generate warmth, supporting the Lungs and Large Intestine.
- Pungent foods are often rich in sulphur which can aid in restoring energy, have anti-parasitic properties and clean the blood. So enjoy that wasabi with your sushi.
- In TCM, Lung energy is also associated with the emotion of "letting go" or grief. We've all experienced loss, separation, “letting go" and feeling grief at such times. Grief cleanses us of what is no longer needed in our lives. It is important then to look after our Lung and Large Intestine to maximise their function of elimination (think "letting go") of that which no longer serves us.
Other Suggestions for being in Harmony with Autumn
- Declutter - let go, donate, sell, get organised, make a task list...
- Reflect on your perspective and attitude - resolve where possible and/or it let go, forgive, accept; focus on the positive aspects in life...
- Breathe - slowly and deeply, inhaling the clean autumn air, feeling yourself energised and purified.
- Keep hydrated...
- Eat foods that are local, spray free and in season.
Take things one step at a time and remember to congratulate yourself when you finish things on your to do list.
Autumn is a great time to treat the Lung and Large Intestine energy as it is at it's peak at this time so come on in for some acupuncture if you'd like a Lung and Large Intestine pick me up.