Five Seasons Healing Late Summer Newsletter

                                                                                               September/October 2010
Five Seasons Healing Late Summer Newsletter

Summer To Fall Transitions

Needles pic

In This Issue
Late Summer: The Fifth Season
Indian Summer
Chase the Blues Away
Quick Links

Cold & Flu Season Already?!
Ready or not, we are moving into cold and flu season.
Chinese Medicine offers effective treatment and prevention for colds and flus.
And, the best time to start implementing these tools is now! Schedule an
appointment for an acupuncture treatment and/or an herbal consultation. I am
happy to develop a customized treatment plan to boost your immune system so
that you can smoothly sail through this Fall and Winter. 

Don’t Forget Your Scarf!

As the weather cools and the wind picks up, it’s important to
keep our neck warm. When our defenses are down, we are more susceptible and
vulnerable to pathogens such as colds and flus. In TCM, we believe that “wind
carries a thousand diseases” and we are moving into that time now.  So remember your scarf before heading
out the door!


I
appreciate your referrals. If you have enjoyed your experience with my
practice, and know of anyone who may benefit from my care, please send
them my way!

I always appreciate reviews on Yelp or Citysearch. If
you are on Facebook, become a fan of Five Seasons Healing. Or, if you would like to offer a testimonial for my website, email me, and I will happily post it.


Thanks so much for your support!

Sharon Yeung, MS, L.Ac., Doula
Five Seasons Healing
Acupuncture & Chinese Herbs
***
80 E.11th St., Suite 211
NY, NY 10003
917.538.5755

www.fiveseasonshealing.com
fiveseasonshealing.blogspot.com

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sunI hope you have all been enjoying a wonderful summer,
whether you’ve been traveling, relaxing or just basking in the sun here in New
York! The fifth, often-overlooked, season is Late Summer and it may have caught you
by surprise. Though short, it is a very important season, as it gives us a
chance to slow down the pace and to reflect as we prepare for the upcoming
autumn.   
 
This season is a time of transition – from the relaxation of
Summer to the beginning of school. It’s a time where we re-commit to our
responsibilities. And, it’s the perfect time to re-commit to our health and
healing. I suggest you take some time each day to think about your well being.
Are there steps that you can take to move in the direction of feeling better?
 
One simple practice I re-commit to on a regular basis is
starting each day thinking of 5 things for which I am grateful.  This simple ritual reframes my day and
I walk out into the cool weather (with my scarf, of course!) with a smile on my
face. I look forward to working with you during this transition as we move into
fall.

Love,
Sharon
Sharon
Yeung, MS, L.Ac., Doula

To schedule an appointment, please email info@fiveseasonshealing.com
or call 917.538.5755.

Late Summer: The
Fifth Season

 
Late Summer is the fifth season in Traditional Chinese
Medicine (TCM). While it is a short season, it is, in many ways, the most
important, as it represents the transition from the energetic yang energy of
Spring and Summer to the quieter yin energy of Fall and Winter. This is the
point at which all seasons converge. As Paul Pitchford writes in Healing
with Whole Foods
, Late Summer represents
“the instant where the pendulum reverses its swing.” This season is
the point of clarity between Summer and Fall, when we can pause and figure out
what we need to do to prepare for winter.
 
Grounding and centering are key during this transition. We
must protect the immune system for autumn by preparing our bodies and minds. In
this newsletter, I will provide tips for both!

Indian Summer is the Season of the SpleenSunset

During this last burst of Indian Summer – heat and dampness
are prominent. These elements can easily damage the heart and spleen function.
You may find yourself feeling sticky and clammy, sweating, poor appetite, heavy
limbs, fatigue. Drink plenty of fluids to prevent body fluid deficiency. 
 
The organ systems associated with the season of Late Summer
are the Stomach and the Spleen-Pancreas. These systems are responsible for the
digestion of nutrients. Though the spleen is often overlooked in Western
medicine, in TCM, the spleen represents the primary organ of digestion. If the
spleen is in disharmony, then you may develop deficiencies in qi or blood, or
poor digestion.
 
The spleen is also the source of motivation and creativity.
When the spleen-pancreas energy is balanced, we feel calm and settled and
compassionate. We experience anxiety and worry when the spleen-pancreas energy
is not balanced.
 
It is important to eat foods that nourish these organs. The
damp heat of this season can put stress on digestion. Eat cooked foods for
easier digestion. Don’t combine too many ingredients, use minimal seasoning,
and keep cooking temperature and time moderate. For example, try steaming
vegetables instead of grilling them. 
 
Since this season is associated with the color yellow and
the sweet flavor, try golden and orange-colored foods that are mildly sweet. To
get your body in tune with this season, try: amaranth, apricots, cantaloupe,
chestnuts, corn, garbanzo beans, millet, peas, potatoes, soybeans, squash,
string beans, sweet potatoes, tofu and yams.

For more information, visit the nutrition page on the Five Seasons Healing website!

 Chase the Blues Away

As the days get shorter, we begin to
experience less daylight. For many people, depression or melancholy can begin
to set in. It’s important to manage these feelings from a psycho-emotional
standpoint, perhaps with a therapist or meditation practice. Below, I will
introduce a meditation exercise that is great for stress reduction, relaxation
and is something you can even practice on the subway!
 
As it gets cooler, it is especially important to pay special
attention to our respiratory health, not only to prevent colds and flus, but
also because according to TCM, our Lungs are associated with the emotion
melancholy.  Thus, focusing on
breathing exercises is a great way to  support this vital organ system during this time of year.
 
A useful Lung opening and stress reduction exercise is
called “Coherent Breathing,” the strategy of consciously controlling your
breathing rate to 5 breaths per minute. When done properly, it rapidly balances
the autonomic nervous system. There is an alignment between the sympathetic and
parasympathetic system and synchronization between the energy of the heart and
the energy of the brain. Within a few weeks of regular practice, your heart
rate variability (HRV) typically increases, which is considered to be an
indicator of an increase in overall well-being, both physically and mentally.  In the moment, this exercise is helpful
for calming you down and bringing you to the present.

Here are the basic instructions:

1) With eyes open or closed, inhale to the count of 6, then exhale to the count
of 6. You can use a noisy clock that ticks off the seconds or count silently to
yourself.

2) Since the highest density of blood vessels are located in the base of the
lungs, breath deeply into that region first. This is also known as belly
breathing or diaphragmatic breathing. Breathe slowly and rhythmically (think of
a pendulum).

3) Allow the air to flow naturally. Guide but do not force the process.

4) Each time you exhale, relax your face, neck, shoulders, and the rest of your
body.

 
You can do this on the subway, at your desk, or anywhere and
for any amount of time to achieve the immediate physical and mental benefits.

A CD to help with pacing the breath is available titled “RESPIRE 1” by Stephen
Elliott at www.coherence.com and more information is available in print: “The New Science of Breath” by
Stephen Elliott with Dee Edmonson.