Ayurveda Center in Miami
Awake to the Wonders of Spring the Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine Ways.
Spring awaits you, its time for new green growth, to blossom, is your soil ready? Depending on which system of knowledge and/or language one chooses, spring is the season in which water promotes wood (Chinese Traditional medicine) or in Ayurveda, Kapha (water and earth) wakes up to become active heading toward fire or Pitta. Of course in our own western medical tradition, this has always been the time for spring-cleaning. Whatever system, whatever way…energy in spring is supposed to rise up to the glory of rebirth and new beginnings. This is, therefore, the traditional time for leaving the stillness of winter and beginning new growth. As spring is represented by the wood element and includes the liver and its complementary organ, the gallbladder, these two organs are usually the primary targets for springtime cleansing and health regimens. Spring is a great time to start or move forward with new projects, exercise programs, and creative endeavors.
In Traditional Chinese medicine Spring its:
• Element: Wood
• Color: Green
• Nature: Yang
• Organs: Liver, Gallbladder
• Emotion: Anger (when imbalanced)
Honoring new growth naturally leads to mimicking mother nature’s wisdom and learning from her how to grow strong and solid wood with greening freshness and clear purity.
To Stay Well This Spring:
Set Your Alarm
To wake up early 7 am at the latest; preferably earlier as sleeping later will aggravate Kapha. Self Massage your body with warm sesame or sunflower oil or book a massage with a professional and follow it with a warm shower. Dry skin brushing is excellent for stimulating lymph and reducing cellulite. Use firm sweeping strokes towards the heart to aid the elimination of fluid. Saunas can be useful for drying up excess secretions.
Spring corresponds to the “Wood” element, which in turn is conceptually related to the liver and gallbladder organs. According to the philosophy of Chinese medicine, the liver is responsible for the smooth flowing of Qi (energy) throughout the body. When the liver functions smoothly, physical and emotional activity throughout the body also runs smoothly. So, for optimum health this spring, move your Qi!
Do More Outdoor Activities
Outside air helps liver qi flow. If you have been feeling irritable, find an outdoor activity to smooth out that liver qi stagnation. Try hiking or take up golf.
The liver controls the tendons. According to Chinese medicine, the liver stores blood during periods of rest and then releases it to the tendons in times of activity, maintaining tendon health and flexibility. Incorporate a morning and evening stretch into your routine. Try yoga, tai chi, or qi gong.
The liver opens into the eyes. Although all the organs have some connection to the health of the eyes, the liver is connected to proper eye function. Remember to take breaks when looking at a computer monitor for extended periods of time and do eye exercises.
Practice Vigorous Exercise
To get the lymph moving in the body, preventing congestive problems. It is also one of the best ways to stimulate a sluggish digestion and aid detoxification. Make your yoga practice dynamic and stimulating. Sun salutations are ideal as they build up heat, working all the major muscles. Pranayama (breathing techniques) is also good for generating internal heat and burning toxins.
Green is the color of the liver and of springtime. Eating young plants – fresh, leafy greens, sprouts, and immature cereal grasses – can improve the liver’s overall functions and aid in the movement of qi.
Foods and drinks with sour tastes are thought to stimulate the liver’s qi. Put lemon slices in your drinking water, use vinegar and olive oil for your salad dressing.
A Spring Ayurvedic Diet
Recommends more bitter tastes (ex: herbs such as dandelion), as well as spicy (ex: fresh ginger herbal tea) and astringent (ex: all pulses). These tastes open the channels of elimination, clearing excess mucus, and moisture from the body. Reduce kappa-aggravating sweet, sour, and salty foods which could cause water retention at this time. In common with the winter diet, minimize raw and cold foods, favoring warm, lightly cooked meals. Lighter grains such as quinoa, millet, and barley are all Kapha reducing, but minimize wheat dominant foods.
Get a Seasonal Acupuncture “Tune-Up”
Even if you only have acupuncture a few times a year, the change of seasons is a good time to do it. Treatments are designed to harmonize your body, or internal environment, with the season, or external environment. Now is a better time than ever to start treatment for your seasonal allergies so you can enjoy the growth and beauty of spring. If you are feeling stress, anger, or frustration, which are associated with Liver disharmony, acupuncture can help restore harmony and improve your mood.
Use a Neti Pot
To give the nose a daily rinse with warm, saltwater over a sink. This not only helps ward off colds and hay fever but will also improve your pranayama.
For a Spring Cold
Help clear mucous by eating light, warm, simple foods as you rest. Soup is ideal. Avoid dairy products, sweets, fried foods, and yeasted bread which increase congestion. Fresh ginger tea is excellent, especially with raw honey added once the tea has cooled down. Raw honey clears mucous and Kapha due to its heating, drying, and channel clearing effect. It is the best sweetener for Kapha types and is good for all in spring.
For persistent colds, try Trikatu (ginger, black pepper, and long pepper) which dries up mucous and clears channels. It should not be taken in pregnancy or with aggravated pitta (ex: heartburn or hyperacidity). Use copious turmeric and black pepper in your cooking – it has antiviral and antibacterial properties and can be used in medicinal doses for all respiratory tract infections.
At Evolv Wellness we wish you a healthy and balance new birth into the Wonders of this New Spring.