According to the Chinese Lunar Calendar, May 6th was the first day of the summer season this year.
When Nature’s energy flourishes and blossoms during summer, it is the time to nurture and enjoy the fruit of the seeds we planted and the visions and plans we made in spring. If a tree doesn’t flower and bear fruit, there will be no harvest in the fall, so a healthy summer is essential to our well-being for the rest of the year.
The primary element of this season is Fire, which in Traditional Chinese Medicine is associated with the heart, small intestine, circulatory system, and tongue.
The Fire element is the spark from which all life comes. The color associated with Fire is red. The human sound is laughter.
The emotions associated with Fire are love, joy, appreciation, and respect for ourselves and others. When in balance, these qualities represent an overflowing enthusiasm for life.
An excess of Fire can cause anxiousness and restlessness, while a deficiency of Fire can produce a lack of joy and a feeling of apathy.
How can you cultivate and sustain harmonious fire in summer?
You can participate in and enjoy the many activities and events summer brings and maintain your health and well-being by following a few simple guidelines from Traditional Chinese Medicine.
A healthy heart needs regular moderate exercise to keep the circulatory system flowing. However, be sure to find a balance between activity and relaxation.
In hot summer weather it is particularly important to dress lightly and be cautious about physical overexertion.
Make sure to find time each day to de-stress. Take a few minutes to do the Heart sound (HAAA), particularly if you are overheated or stressed. Remember to relax your jaw and tongue as you exhale (HAAA), similar to a yawn.
In general, it is OK to have more cooling foods. Please enjoy fresh, local, seasonal fruits and vegetables, including as many colors as possible to represent all of the Five Elements.
Vegetables should be quickly sautéed at high heat or steamed. Cooking methods should include more water and less oil.
Avoid foods that are greasy or oily (which can cause stagnation) or deep-fried or charcoal barbecued (which dry up the body fluids).
Meals should include only small amounts of salt.
The taste associated with Fire is bitter,so include bitter greens like spinach, kale, and Swiss chard.
Eat some fruit. However, PLEASE EAT ONLY ONE TYPE OF FRUIT AT A TIME. Apples, strawberries, cherries, or other berries are ideal fruit choices.
Remember to drink lots of pure, fresh water. You can enhance the water you drink by adding a healthy electrolyte supplement (no sugars, additives, etc.). We recommend Elete, which is available at Wu’s Healing Center.
Most important, always remember to SMILE!!!