Happy First Day of Winter! Right now, we are in the best season to slow down, replenish and restore. In Chinese Medicine, winter is referred to as the Season of Stillness. The cooler, darker days invite a meditative space to rest and reflect on your health and conserve your energy. It's a time to hibernate and bundle up on the couch in your favorite cozies. This deeply nourishing Yin time is what you need to emerge into spring, the season for growth, change and fresh starts.
The Water Element
Winter is associated with the water element, the most essential substance for life. The kidney and bladder are the organs associated with winter, as they both play a major role in fluid regulation. In Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are the Yin organ and are known to be the source of all the energy within the body, which is used to heal, prevent illness, and to age gracefully. The bladder is the Yang organ, and it's important to stay very hydrated so the blood can purify and toxins can successfully exit the body. Supporting these organs creates the opportunity to get your body back into balance and bring more harmony into your life. This season is the time to focus on replenishing your energy reserves, getting plenty of rest, drinking lots of fluids, and implementing a seasonal self-care routine to support these organ systems.
Indulge in Nourishing & Warming Foods
Warm foods, such as hearty soups and stews are great for supporting your health during the winter season. Bone broths are especially important, as bones are influenced by the kidneys. Additionally, warm/cooked foods, root vegetables, whole grains, roasted nuts, and warming spices, like ginger, clove and cinnamon are great options to include. Warm teas are also a delicious and hydrating choice! This season, especially try to lower your consumption of caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, as they are diuretics which take more water away from you and stress the kidneys and adrenals.
Winter is time for internal work. It is about self-acceptance and being gentler with yourself. Sleep early, rest well, and staying warm should be at the top of your list during this season. Meditation, yoga, warm baths, reading & journaling are great activities to indulge in. Keep your gatherings simple and relaxed (this should be easy this year!)
For additional information on the change of season, please listen to my podcast, available on Apple Podcasts or by clicking the link here.