Summertime Wellness Tips According to TCM

0 minute read | 22.05.2024

Learn more about how you can prepare for the summer weather with TCM.
Learn more about how you can prepare for the summer weather with TCM.

Summer is the perfect season to align ourselves with nature. As flowers bloom in full, so should we. To help you stay healthy and happy this summer, we’ve crafted a simple wellness guide with ten holistic tips for your mind, body, and soul, inspired by Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Let’s dive in!

Summer and Traditional Chinese Medicine

Summer symbolizes openness and abundant growth. This season brings vibrant flavours, colours, and textures of ripe fruits and vegetables. According to TCM, summer embodies yang energy, marked by growth, lightness, outward activity, and creativity. This is why we feel a natural urge to be outdoors and engage with the environment.

Summer Wellness Tips

Stay Hydrated:

Hydration is crucial during the hot summer months. Drink plenty of water and reduce caffeine intake to avoid dehydration, which can cause muscle cramps, dry skin, and electrolyte imbalances. Aim for at least 8-10 glasses of water daily, adjusting for your body size and activity level. Monitor your hydration by checking your urine color; light yellow indicates good hydration, while bright yellow suggests you need more water.

Embrace Warm Foods:

Consuming warm foods and drinks, like teas, soups, and pungent dishes, helps your body release heat through perspiration, naturally cooling you down. Bitter-tasting foods, associated with the fire element in TCM, also have a cooling effect. Incorporate fresh teas with elderflower, mint, lemon, calendula, lavender, and yarrow. Avoid very cold foods and drinks, which can trap heat and harm your digestion.

Eat Light and Fresh:

Opt for lighter meals with seasonal produce from local farmers’ markets. Foods like cucumbers, lemons, mung beans, barley, sprouts, lettuce, radishes, celery, arugula, and fresh ginger help your body stay cool. Enjoy a variety of brightly colored summer fruits and vegetables, and cook with minimal oils, preferably steaming or simmering. Grow fresh herbs like basil, cilantro, mint, sage, chives, parsley, and dill for added freshness.

Connect with Nature Through Food:

Summer is a time to deepen our connection with nature. Nourishing foods such as well-cooked whole grains like oats, sweet rice, and quinoa help ground us during this fiery season. Don’t discard rice water, which is rich in amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants beneficial for digestion, energy, and healthy skin and hair.

Choose Healthy Proteins:

Opt for lighter proteins during summer. Enjoy lean fish, poultry, or organic steaks at barbecues to help manage weight and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. For diverse options, grill salmon, lean grass-fed beef, turkey burgers, chicken breast, shrimp, sweetcorn, eggplant, mushroom, and tofu.

Pack Healthy Snacks:

Stay on track with healthy eating by bringing nutritious snacks to picnics, hikes, or beach outings. Great options include Greek yogurt, vegetable chips, reduced-fat string cheese, nut butters, hummus with pita chips, fresh or dried fruits, and nuts or seeds.

Enjoy Outdoor Activities:

Summer is perfect for outdoor fun with family and friends. Engage in activities like swimming, hiking, biking, or simply spending time in nature. These activities boost mental health, improve sleep quality, and combat obesity, reducing the risk of heart disease, cancer, and skin issues.

Be Sun-Smart:

Protect yourself from harmful UV rays while enjoying the sun. Instead of solely relying on sunscreen, consume foods rich in good fats (like Omega-3s from leafy vegetables and fish) and antioxidants (such as berries and dark chocolate) to help protect your skin from within. Ensure you get enough Vitamin D as well.

Cool Off with TCM:

Hot days can increase irritability and restlessness. TCM offers ways to balance your body, reducing heat-induced discomfort. Acupressure can dispel heat and ease irritability, while acupuncture unblocks energy channels for better Qi and blood flow. Mung bean tea can alleviate symptoms of dehydration, headaches, and bloating.

Keep Your Environment Cool:

Adapt to the summer heat by staying cool indoors during peak temperatures. Use natural bamboo curtains, air coolers, and fans to ventilate your space. Cooling techniques like placing your feet in cold water can effectively reduce body temperature.

By integrating these TCM-inspired tips into your summer routine, you can stay healthy, happy, and harmonized with the season.

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