The Balance of Yin and Yang

by Jennifer Long, L.Ac

The concept of yin and yang is at the foundation of Chinese medicine theory. Yin and yang represent opposites, however they are complimentary to each other. They are interdependent of one another and transform into each other, yet maintaining a balance of yin and yang is important to maintaining good health. All physiological processes of the body are the result of the interdependence of yin and yang. In addition, it can be said that all disease signs and symptoms are the result of an imbalance of yin and yang. Yang relates to the sun, brightness, summer, fire and activity while yin relates to the moon, shade, winter, water and rest. As we move into the summer season full of expansion, activity and movement, make sure not to over work or overtax oneself and take time daily to rest and be in stillness in order to maintain balance of yin and yang. Too much yang  can lead to a deficiency of the body's yin energy. Balance in our lives with diet, exercise, work, emotional life and sexual lives, is the essence of prevention in Chinese Medicine. Regular acupuncture treatments can also help to correct imbalances as well as maintain balance of the yin and yang energies of the body.

Eating for the Season

by Jennifer Long, L.Ac

Chinese medicine is a complete healthcare system within itself. It is comprised of acupuncture, internal/external herbal therapy, Chinese medical massage, mindful body movements (Qi Gong, Tai Chi) as well as lifestyle recommendations and eastern dietary therapy. According to eastern dietary therapy, one should eat according to their individual constitution (what's right for their individual body), consume a balance of the five flavors and eat appropriate for the season.
Spring is the season for growth, movement and expansion.  Therefore foods consumed during the spring should be supplementing, moving and supportive. Recommended foods that are mildly warming include fennel, rice, buckwheat, garlic, paprika and ginger.  A moderation of sour flavors are also recommended such as sauerkraut, grapefruit, rhubarb and cranberries.  In addition, foods that are green in color such as green tea, spinach, celery and sprouts should be consumed during the spring season.
Wind is the dominating weather that affects us in the spring season and often causes colds and flu, therefore the consumption of green onions and ginger can be beneficial. Foods that should be avoided are energetically hot and fatty foods, as well as excessive sour flavors. Choosing foods that are grown locally and in season is always a good tip to follow! If you would like to learn more about which foods are best for your individual constitution, according to eastern dietary therapy, contact Life Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine to set up a dietary consultation. 585.465.1056 or visit us at lifeacupunctureclinic.com.

The Organs and Their Connections to Our Emotions

by Jennifer Long, L.Ac

Our bodies are a complex web of interconnections.  The practice of Chinese medicine is based on the interconnections between and within our external and internal environments.  According to Chinese medicine theory, each season has a pair of organs related to it. Spring is the season of the Liver and Gallbladder. This is the time that typically the liver is the strongest. If it is a healthy strength, then there is good health. Furthermore, each organ is related to an emotion. It is believed that our emotions are stored within our tissues, in particular within our organs.  The emotion most closely related to the liver is anger. Therefore, during the springtime, we may have more of a tendency towards anger if our organs, particularly if our liver is out of balance. Anger can also damage our liver and lead to depression.  As a result, one may experience symptoms of headaches, irritability, dizziness, a red face or feeling of heat in the face or the desire to shout. Acupuncture helps to balance the organs and boost their functioning, creating a harmonious, healthy internal state of wellbeing. Please give us a call to schedule your appointment to better health. 585.465.1056