The seasons have once again shifted, so it’s time for our Winter Cheat Sheet. Full of tips and advice to help you to thrive during the winter months. The winter is a time to rest and nourish our bodies. There are no distractions - nature appears frozen and bleak, the weather keeps us inside, and it’s the perfect time to reconnect to who we really are and replenish both our body and mind.
In Chinese Medicine, the winter is governed by the element of water and the organ system related to the kidneys and adrenal glands. When in balance, the water element and kidneys are associated with courage, wisdom, clarity, observations, resilience and integrity. The kidneys are the primary source of vitality, energy, and heat. They govern our vital energy and as they are relied on continually when the body is under stressed, they need time to be nourished, replenished and well rested. When they are strong we are said to be powerful, resilience, and determined. On the flip side, when out of balance they can manifest fear, absentmindedness, frantic energy, depression, lack of immunity, foggy thinking and apathy within us.
This doesn’t mean that winter is a time for negative emotions - quite the contrary. It’s the perfect time to reflect and nourish yourself. To refocus on your beliefs, intentions and integrity. It’s a time to slow down in order to set the foundation for how you want to live your life and enjoy the present.
The cold weather affects our digestion, immunity and the darkness can toy with our emotions, so supporting the adrenals, eating warm, healthy meals and keeping exercise consistent will help counterbalance this. Sugar is our biggest enemy in the winter when we are naturally trying to slow down and conserve. Because of the darkness we can often feel down or depressed, sugar will only exacerbate those mood swings and anxieties within us. Many of the foods that are supportive in the autumn carry over to the winter and soups, stews and casseroles are great foods to comfort and nourish. Continue to keep raw foods to a minimum. Focus on nutrient dense choices during these months so that you can replenish and be ready for the spring ahead!
THE BODY NEEDS
THINGS TO DECREASE
THINGS TO EMBRACE