Happy Summer, dear ones!
The Summer Solstice on June 21st marked the beginning of this beautiful season of abundance, flow, heat, fire, the heart, and the small intestine!
A nourished and balanced summer body and spirit feels amazing!! Alternatively, an imbalanced summer body and spirit feels hot, tired, irritable, and dry.
Right now I am sinking so deeply into the expansive, flowing, loving, overflowing abundance of slowing down with this season.
Summer is a combination of speeding up in some areas and slowing down in others. Think about slowing down at work and speeding up on vacation or hiking as an example!
Right now I am speeding up in my gardening and activating my time doing silly kid things during the day.
At the same time, I’m slowing way down and giving myself the gift of fully catching up to my level of development so that no part of me is left behind. While winter is a time of integrating in the dark quiet, summer is a time of integrating through shining abundant light on all areas that need tending.
According to Joerg Kastner in his book Chinese Nutrition Therapy, the heat of summer “feeds on body fluids and harms yin. It is recommended to take in predominantly cooling, yin foods (cooling and moistening) to disperse heat and build up body fluids. The bitter flavor (think arugula!) corresponds to the fire phase, and mostly bitter–cool as well as bitter–cold foods in moderation should be consumed during the hot season.”
In general, choose lighter foods to avoid indigestion. While our digestive fire can be higher in the summer, we don’t want to overwhelm digestion. Don’t forget that the heart and the small intestine are paired together in Chinese medicine!
This is an excellent time to nourish deeply with cooling and moistening foods such as watermelon, cucumber, green tea and cooling herbs such as mint, linden, hibiscus along with heart herbs such as Motherwort. Summer is a time to avoid hot and dry foods such as coffee, excessively spicy foods, ice cold foods like ice cream since they cause the digestive system to slow down.
Give yourself permission to really enjoy the season! Socialize more (oh my goodness this is huge this year!), make time to play and experience pleasure, be adventurous, and be sure to balance that with plenty of water, relaxation, and downtime!
Sending you all abundant, fiery, heart blessings for this new season!
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