Thriving in the Winter

One of the things I love about Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is that it actually helps to inform the ways that we live our everyday life.  A big theme is living with the seasons, and each season has a constellation of associated characteristics.

As we approach the height of winter, here are some ideas to explore:

Element: Water

Many of us experience the desire to hibernate.  Water is about depth, quiet, and protection. It is a time to go inward and listen to yourself.


Winter is a time of yin (the material and substance of the body rather than the heat and energy).  In nature, it is a time of storing rather than creation. Simplicity, gentle movement and rest are important. Consider eating warm cooked food with warming herbs like cinnamon and ginger.  If you eat meat, this is a great time for homemade bone broth. This is the perfect time to have the hardy stews, mulled wine, root vegetables and porridge many of us are craving.

Colour: Black

According to the doctrine of signatures, foods that are black are especially nourishing this time of year.  Think: black beans, black sesame, blackberries, molasses

Flavour: Salty

Consider adding good quality salt, seaweeds and fermented foods to your diet right now.

Organs: Kidney and Urinary Bladder

The kidneys and bladder can use a little extra love this time of year.  These meridians help to support our will. Being gentle and nourishing with yourself now will ensure you have the will to put your plans into action come spring and summer.   

Emotion: Fear

Fear is the emotion of this element/time of year.  Be sure to offer yourself rest and nourishment if you are experiencing an increase in fear.  Herbs and acupuncture with a trained TCMD can also be very helpful for fear and anxiety.

If you have any questions or want to explore this further, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!!

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