Nature teaches us about unity, working together, and flow. Natural healing systems from the east use nature as a tool for observation and assessment of the human body. When a natural energy is leading us one way, we want to follow it. To work with it, flow with it and not to obstruct it. This goes for every cycle and period, each season too. So for summer health, there are a few tips we can follow to change the way our bodies thrive in the heat:
1) Warm breakfasts
How we start our day is super important, on a physical, mental and spiritual level. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the day time is known as yang – warm, sunny, fiery, active energy. The morning is the most yang we can get. In order to balance our bodies according to this energy – especially in summer, the most yang season, we want to nourish our own ‘yang energy’. That means starting the day with warming foods – no ice or cold fruits at this time! Ginger is an amazing morning boost on summer mornings, paired with a warm nourishing breakfast like oats. If you crave lighter breakfasts this time of year, simply eat less! No need to put your body out of balance by eating the wrong foods – cold is not what your body really needs.
2) Turn down the AC
You may hate hearing this, but air conditioning is not your friend in warm months. When the warm weather is opening your pores and making you sweat, stepping into an air-conditioned cold room will simply block your pores and lock in cold energy into your body. This is why summertime colds can be so common! Sweating is natural and good for us, it means the body is detoxifying. Let’s not fight it.
3) Respiratory health is key
The lungs are extra susceptible to unbalancing energy in summer time. Fall time is around the corner – the season that rules the respiratory system – so to avoid illness later in the year we need to prevent it. Practice extra breathing techniques this season in your yoga practice, or simply take more time to focus on your breath throughout the day. This will keep the lungs strong!
4) Get stuff done
The fiery energy of summer is urging us to be active, and it is also favouring us being active – if you focus your energy on getting things done and putting plans into action, this energy will help you get there. It’s only intuitive to take advantage of the season’s energy that will help us achieve our goals! This is the time to put plans and dreams into action, get out there and take risks, have fun, be social, and nourish that yang energy. Winter will be here soon enough to allow us to consolidate and reflect on it all accordingly.