5 Element Theory:
- Season: Winter
- Organ: Kidneys
- Sensory Organ: Ears
- Emotion: Fear
- Tissue: Bone
- Taste: Salty
- Colour: Black
How To Stay Healthy This Winter With Traditional Chinese Medicine
The ultimate goal of Traditional Chinese Medicine is to create balance of yin and yang. This means a balanced body and mind. One of the ways to create balance within ourselves is to align with our environment. This requires syncing our internal state with our external state – the natural world around us.
Winter is upon us and is considered the most ‘yin’ time of year. Yin relates to cold, darkness, stillness and inward energy. If we observe nature during the winter months we see that it has also retreated inward. Animals have hibernated, trees have lost their leaves and become dormant. Taking cues from nature, we too should use this time for internal reflection, rest and conserving our energy in preparation for spring.
Water is the element associated with winter. Water is about our ability to flow and overcome obstacles. Its is also about flexibility and adapting to our environment. It can take on many forms – the stillness of a pond, the waves of the ocean or a frozen lake. This is representative of our ability to adapt to change in our lives and the world around us.The organs associated with the Winter are the kidneys and urinary bladder. These organs work together to control our water metabolism and hydration levels. (This is why I often ask about your water intake and urinary output during your acupuncture visits. It gives me insight into the functioning of these organs).
In TCM, the Kidneys store our “jing” (essence) and represents our genetic factors. The kidneys play a role in healthy aging, reproduction and bone health. An imbalance in your kidneys can be associated with infertility, low libido, frequent urination or night urination, night sweats, lower back pain, ringing in the ears and premature grey hair.
The emotion of winter is fear. In TCM, emotions are not good or bad. They are what we make of them. Excessive fear can weaken the kidneys and weak kidneys can give rise to fear. It works both ways. Since winter is a time of reflection, a good way to balance your kidneys and eliminate fear is to connect with your emotions through meditation and stillness. Allow yourself to feel the emotion and give it space. Your body is speaking to you – you just have to listen.
If you have more questions about how to stay healthy this winter season or would like to schedule an appointment to help balance your kidneys please give us a call: 905.553.9255 or book online HERE