Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) helps us live harmoniously with the seasons.
Right now, we have WINTER season (also in Chiangmai) with night temperatures going down to 15C but day temperatures still around 28C in the afternoon.
This is the best season to slow down and conserve our energy.
The cooler and darker days invite this meditative space to rest and reflect. Take this time to replenish your resources that have been used throughout the year.
Allowing your body to rest, allows inside energy to be collected and held in reserve. This deeply nourishing Yin time gives us the needed energy, vision, and purpose with which to start spring- a season of growth and renewal of spirit.
In this most Yin season, our Qi flows more deeply inside us which invites us to connect with the core of our being and with untouched emotions. There is death in nature and less activity to induce stimulation and excitement.
For some, the Qi of the season can easily contribute to depression, loneliness, and seasonal affective disorder. Others may feel relief for an opportunity to pause and do internal work.
In preparation for winter, our focus should be to strengthen the water element’s organs, the Kidneys and Urinary Bladder, and to practice what we observe in nature: stillness and conservation.
This time of year, overworking and lack of sleep easily depletes the Water Element and the kidneys especially.
The KIDNEYS (your Storehouse of your Vital Essence) ignite all processes and functions in body, mind, and spirit. They provide the driving Qi- energy and will empower you to overcome obstacles and press forward to accomplish your goals in life.
Our body will let us know when we are exhausting these reserves with symptoms like low back ache, weak knees, frequent urination, and menstrual or fertility issues. Other signs are: exhaustion, autoimmune flare ups, very low motivation, excessive fear and anxiety, and skeletal disorders.
Physical signs of URINARY BLADDER imbalance include back pain, bladder pain, vertigo and headaches, vision issues, and urinary incontinence.
Slowing down, getting plenty of rest, eating well and in-season foods, drinking lots of fluids, and adapting your restorative wellness routine will support these organs and boost their vitality.

FOOD THERAPY : Focus on foods that share the qualities of the Water Element. Colors are dark, taste is salty, content is hydrating and nourishing. Examples include nuts, seeds, legumes, shellfish, salt water fish, seaweed, dark colored berries, root vegetables, whole grains, stews and soups. We should also include mostly warm and cooked foods, while limiting cold and raw foods.
Use warming spices: Garlic, Ginger and Cardamom.

ADAPTOGENIC HERBS strengthen the kidneys and adrenals, boost immunity, lift depression, ease anxiety, and help the body adapt to stress : Holy basil, Ashwaghanda, Astragalus, Oat straw, and Rhodiola can be taken daily as supplements or tea.

ESSENTIAL OILS like Geranium, Ylang ylang, Jasmine, and Basil can be used in a diffuser or applied on the body in a carrier oil formula to strengthen the water element and humidify the drier air and skin.

LOOKING AHEAD: REST IN WINTER TO PREPARE FOR GROWTH IN SPRING. This is a time for allowing our bodies and minds to rest. It is the concentrated, internal force of winter that enables a seed to burst forth in spring growth…
Therefore, going for Winter Sports with its daily and nightly intensive activities may be great fun but not as restorative as we may think…
This is the kind of practical info we teach once a year during 6 weeks in ABET (Asian Bio-Energetic Therapy) which is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine.