As the seasons change, so does the type of energy that influences the earth. Chinese medicine explains the cycle of the different aspects of the universal energy, or qi, in terms of 5 elements. These 5 elements are Fire, Earth, Metal, Water and Wood. Each element is associated with a season and a personality-type that embodies the energy of that element.
The Elements and their associated season and archetype are:
Fire: Summer / The Wizard
Earth: Late Summer or the Transitional Time Between Seasons/ The Peacemaker
Metal: Fall / The Alchemist
Water: Winter / The Philosopher
Wood: Spring / The Pioneer
As we approach summer, the season of the fire element, notice how the energy on earth gets brighter, more expressive. It naturally gets hotter, thanks to the proximity of the great fire in the sky, and it draws people outside and together. There is a sense of vibrancy that is awakened in us during this time.
The Wizard is the embodiment of this energy: colorful, enchanting, expressive, full of enthusiasm and an appetite for life. She is a magnetic speaker. He is an enchanting leader who leads from the heart. They are teachers, visionaries, and they possess magic.
Are you a wizard? Here are some questions to help answer that..
If you answered yes to any of these, you have at least a little wizard in you. We all have some features of each elemental energy, some more than others. If you answered yes to all of these, you’re a bright fiery wizard!
As it is the central philosophical foundation of Chinese Medicine, the importance of balance can never be understated. A fire can provide comfort and warmth or it can be disastrous and destructive. Signs of a fire burning too strong are excess perspiration, inability to rest, excessive talking, fast heartbeat, high blood pressure, red face, rashes, cramps, issues with blood circulation and even the actual enlargement of the heart organ itself from overexertion. If this excess fire is not kept in check, it will inevitably lead to burn-out and a complete reversal of what we know to be associated with fire. Signs of a burnt-out wizard are someone that is nervous and withdrawn, or easily startled.
The unregulated desire to share oneself can lead to a loss of boundaries, which can lead to a loss of self. The beautiful fire of creativity and expression can thus turn into ashes of desolation and voicelessness. We can think of someone like Robin Williams as an example of a wizard who experienced both extremes of the fire-type personality. He shared his powerful magic with the world but also suffered from depression and isolation.
Some general but important reminders to help keep your fire in balance:
Timing is everything. Nature knows this and teaches us if we are paying attention. From winter to spring we can witness a drastic change in our environment. As that fresh spring breeze blows in and the cold barren landscape transforms into a vibrant display of life, we may feel like getting outside and shaking off some of that winter sluggishness.
In Chinese medicine, Spring is liver time, which is a time of rebirth, growth and movement. It is also a perfect time for supporting our liver function with some gentle detoxification. In accord with Chinese Medicine theory, the regeneration of liver cells is measurably more prolific after the spring equinox. Our bodies know what to do. Liver function, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), includes regulating the movement of qi (energy) and blood in the body. It’s all about getting things moving again after nature’s slow season.
From a western biomedical standpoint, the liver is mainly an organ of detoxification. The liver degrades old red and white blood cells and breaks down toxic chemicals, cleansing and refreshing the blood. It actively filters 1.3 - 1.5 liters of blood every single minute. It also synthesizes bile which carries toxins out of the body through the intestines.
There are 2 main phases of detoxification in the liver that process contaminants like medications, alcohol, and environmental toxins. Phase 1 is responsible for transforming fat-soluble compounds into water-soluble compounds. Phase 2 converts pesticides, alcohol, toxic metals, excess hormones etc. into safer compounds that can then be eliminated by other organs.
Herbology is the internal medicine branch of TCM. We can support liver function and in turn our natural spring renewal process with the use of some Chinese herbs. With an understanding that the safest and most effective herbal therapy is a customized one, we can look at a few herbal detox superheros:
Turmeric: (jiang huang)
TCM categorizes this herb as a blood mover. It unblocks qi and blood stasis and eases pain.
Western pharmacology recognizes its blood-moving and anti-inflammatory properties as well. It is known to support both phase 1 and phase 2 of liver detox. A study on mice showed it also improved liver detoxification by lowering inflammatory markers, reducing oxidative stress and increasing glutathione (another important body detoxification product made in the liver).
Turmeric can be enjoyed as a food, seasoning, supplement, or in tea. ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder can be added to meals. Be sure to add a little black pepper to increase absorption. You can also grate fresh turmeric root into soups, salads and curries.
Schizandra Berry (wu wei zi )
This amazing medicinal herb is also known as 5 flavor berry because it exhibits all 5 flavors. It also remarkably enters all 12 meridians and therefore has multiple beneficial effects on the body. It is mainly thought of as having an astringent action, which can treat symptoms of liver and kidney deficiency by preventing loss of qi and yin fluids. Bio-chemically, it is known to support regeneration of healthy liver cells. It has been used to help induce regeneration of liver tissue after part of the liver was surgically removed. It also activates the phase 1 detox pathway, helps to decrease free radicals, protects cell membranes, and can assist in lowering stress-related increases of liver enzymes.
Small amounts of the berries can be eaten fresh or dried and there are also tinctures, powders and supplements. But why not relax with a cup of some medicinal and delicious 5-flavor tea?
Gold Coin Grass: (jin qian cao)
Another herbal powerhouse to keep on hand for spring cleaning is Gold Coin Grass. TCM functions are to drain damp, remove heat and toxins, and eliminate stasis. In Western herbology, it is recognized for its ability to dissolve and prevent gallstones and promote bile secretion to help to move sediment and clear bile ducts. This is in addition to it’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects
Gold Coin Grass is known for making a drinkable tea, but can also be taken as a supplement or tincture. It is not advisable for patients with diarrhea or those on anti-diuretic medications.
Listen to your body this spring. You may hear it calling for exercise, or emotional release. While you’re at it, try one of these 3 herbal superheroes and see what their powers can do for you!
To discover the full benefits of Chinese herbal therapy and how it can help you optimally adjust to the changing season, call your Chinese Medicine practitioner to schedule your next appointment!
Migraines are ranked the 3rd most common disease in the world, affecting at least 12 % of the world’s population. If you don’t suffer from them, then you most likely know someone who does. As too many of us know from experience, they are periodic painful attacks on one or both sides of the head with various accompanying symptoms such as nausea, and sensitivity to sensory stimuli. Women are 3 times more likely to suffer from them most likely due to hormonal fluctuations associated with the menstrual cycle and menopause.
Migraines are also the leading cause of days lost due to disability in the world among people under 50 years old. Let alone the economic cost to US employers (estimated at 19.3 billion ), this debilitating condition steals a significant amount of the victim’s time. Migraine attacks can last up to 3 days with a couple more days on either end with the pre-migraine symptoms (thirst, fatigue, neck stiffness, esp on one side) and the post migraine ‘hangover’. For most sufferers these episodes can happen 2 to 4 times a month!
Conventional treatments include pain relievers, triptans (these affect the serotonin receptors thought to be involved in migraine episodes), anti-nausea medications, and preventative measures such as botox injections, other medications and even surgery. Triptans are the most commonly used drug for migraines and, according to a study, offer migraine relief within 2 hours of attack in 42 to 76% of patients. Triptans are contraindicated in cardiovascular disease, breastfeeding moms, and anyone under 18. There is also the risk of drug dependency. When it comes to prevention, between 17 and 29 percent of patients discontinue preventative medication because of adverse side effects such as anxiety, vomiting and weakness.
This is where acupuncture steps in, with no major contraindications or side effects. It also boasts notable effectiveness for a condition desperately in need of more effective treatments. According to a Cochrane review of about 20 studies, it was found that acupuncture is at least as effective as prophylactic drug therapy for migraine and it is safe, long-lasting and cost-effective. Other studies in the review have shown acupuncture to be even more effective than topiramate and flunarizine (common standard medications). With acupuncture, migraine frequency was reduced by 50% or more in up to 59% of the individuals tested. Also, it was noted that 50% of those visiting an acupuncturist reduced their reliance on painkillers.
Acupuncture is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) theory which describes energetic pathways throughout the body that can be rebalanced through strategic application of fine needles at various points on the body. Unchecked imbalances can result in organ pathologies and pain. Studies looking to explain acupuncture’s effect on the body from a biomedical perspective have documented effects on parts of the nervous system that control cardiovascular and digestive functions, as well as changes in levels of certain neurotransmitters (such as serotonin and dopamine), hormones (like luteinizing hormone) and the release of endorphins (our natural painkillers). Research was also done using magnetic resonance spectroscopy to specifically investigate acupuncture’s effect on the nervous system in the treatment of migraines. Results suggested the possible involvement of recovery of neuronal mitochondrial function of the pain pathway.
In addition to acupuncture, TCM offers other modalities that can help in the treatment and prevention of migraines, such as cupping, gua sha and tui na (manual therapies), moxibustion (the burning of mugwort along points and channels), herbal medicine, and lifestyle guidance. While many of those who deal with painful and disabling migraine attacks will need some conventional therapies, acupuncture and the system of medicine it belongs to can offer much needed support and improved outcomes.
If you or someone you know suffers from migraines, don’t hesitate to see what acupuncture can do to help! Call today!
Spring is a time of renewal, regeneration, growth and energy. Plants and animals awaken from their slumber during the cold winter months, and vital nutrients stored in the roots of the plants and bodies of the animals come to the surface as life becomes more vibrant and fluid.
Human beings are no different. Humans stay indoors more during the winter months, and tend to pack on a little extra weight in the process. As the weather warms, humans become more gregarious and spend more time outside enjoying nature. This is just a natural process.
Therefore, it makes sense that what was observed by the ancient Chinese should still hold true today. Humans are supposed to take their cues from nature. As a species, humans should be more active during the warmer spring months. And to do this, we need proper nourishment. Qi (pronounced “chee”) is sometimes translated into energy. This Qi is the vital substance that keeps our bodies functioning until the day we die. To keep the Qi plentiful, we need to eat the proper foods at the proper times.
During the spring, we should be eating foods that have upward energies, such as green, sprouting vegetables. But we also need foods that will provide the extra nourishment for the increased amounts of activity that accompany the season of spring. This is where sweeter foods play a vital role. Foods such as fruits, nuts, yams, carrots and potatoes can provide the extra energy needed during the spring. But be careful not to overdo it. Too much sweet can overload the body and make it sluggish.
Sweets should be countered with pungent foods. Pungent foods aid in the movement of Qi upwards and outwards through the process of perspiration. Pungent flavored foods include scallions, onions, ginger, radishes, garlic, leeks and chives.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine theory, spring is the season of the liver and the gallbladder. These organs regulate a smooth flow of energy throughout the whole body. However, they are prone to stagnation because we do not take proper care of ourselves. This can manifest as anger, irritability, depression, insomnia and even pain. Stagnation can occur when people eat too many poor-quality foods that may be full of chemicals.
Foods that help ward off stagnation include foods rich in chlorophyll, such as wheat grass, spirulina, chlorella, parsley, kale, Swiss chard and collard greens. All of these foods are abundant during the months of spring. It is also a good idea to have a glass of warm water with a slice of lemon first thing in the morning. This will help detoxify the liver and gallbladder to start the day off fresh. Lastly, foods that have a slightly bitter taste can help ward off heat in the liver. This includes foods like asparagus, quinoa, romaine lettuce and dandelion tea.
If you are curious about how to eat according to the seasons, contact a local licensed acupuncturist. They will be able to guide you along your healing journey through the use of Traditional Chinese Medicine and nutritional counseling.
Many of us have noticed a dandelion pushing itself through a crack in concrete, and may have even stopped to marvel at its sense of determination to live and grow. This little wonder is the energy of Spring, the energy of new life bursting into existence.
In Chinese Medicine theory, that energy that comes with springtime is represented by the element wood. Wood is the first element in the 5 element cycle, it is the birth phase and witnessed in nature when seeds and buds explode into new growth, when grass pushes through the earth, or trees extend themselves with new shoots and leaves. Each element is also aligned with a personality type. In this case, it is the Pioneer.
The Pioneer breaks new ground. This is the explorer, the creator of new paths. They break tradition to discover new things. Whether we think about that dandelion working its way to the surface or a pioneer on the Oregon Trail, we can admire the will power it takes to move forward despite challenges. It takes vision to set sail to new horizons, but the Pioneer doesn't stop there. They take the necessary action; they move.
Are You A Pioneer?
Do you consider yourself motivated?
Do you work well under pressure?
Do you sometimes have a hard time relaxing?
Do you enjoy travel?
Have you ever started a new business?
Do you work in an innovative field?
Do you like to be the boss?
Do you exude confidence?
Do you sometimes lose patience?
Do you get frustrated with injustice?
The wood-type personality can sometimes be seen as harsh, given the tenacity they naturally embody. They can also be prone to anger, the emotion associated with liver energy, when there is stagnation within or around them. Liver is the wood element’s organ and the organ of springtime. In our bodies, the liver likes to get our qi moving after winter’s lull and can make us feel irritated if hindered in any way. It is important for wood-types to work on adjusting their speed and intensity to not feel either stifled or burned out. They must find the right pace as they pioneer through life and learn to be flexible like the new spring branches that bend (and not break) with the wind.
Pioneers can keep balance by finding time to slow down when necessary, get regular massages to loosen tight muscles and stiff joints, and enjoy but not overdo spicy or sour foods. Green is a great color for these wood types to align with the natural expression of springtime. Wearing green or keeping some indoor plants can help a wood-type whose lifestyle may keep them indoors for periods of time. Simple adjustments like these can help to prevent some of the health issues
Pioneers may face like tension headaches, high blood pressure, or burnout fatigue.
If you don’t see yourself as a pioneer but know someone who is, offer them a ‘thank-you’ for paving the way for the rest of us. (They love that! ..and deserve it.)
No matter what element you resonate with the strongest, acupuncture can help you align with the season. Call to book an acupuncture session to keep your wood element in balance and help you feel as alive and proud as that little dandelion that burst through the concrete to smile at the sun!
The word pickle comes from the Dutch word Pikel, meaning salt or brine. Salt has been an important tool used for food preservation throughout history. In places that had large deposits of salt, like ancient Mesopotamia, people cured meat with salt. Pickling was also used all over the ancient world, either with a salt brine or through a fermentation process. People in India are credited with the pickling of the first cucumbers over 3,000 years ago, while the ancient Chinese used vinegar brines for pickling much of their meat.
Today, pickles continue to be a beloved worldwide treat, with many delicious variations and flavor innovations. Whether pickled in salt and/or vinegar or fermented (which imparts the extra probiotic benefits), there are many healthy reasons to indulge!
Before sharing an easy at-home pickling recipe, let's take a look at some of the Chinese Medicinal aspects to the 2 basic pickling components: salt and vinegar
*Salt is a flavor that is associated with the kidneys, and in moderation can help with kidney function. It is known to help regulate water in the body, dissolve masses, counter toxins, and balance acidic food.
Speaking of acidic food…
*Vinegar is endowed with the ability to regulate blood, in that it both moves stagnant blood and helps to stop bleeding. And like salt, it helps to resolve toxins in the body.
Pickled Daikon Radish with Chinese Peppercorn & Garlic
1 small daikon
1 Tbsp salt
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 teaspoon Chinese peppercorn
½ cup rice vinegar
½ cup sugar
½ cup water
*you can eat them as soon as the next day, and they will last in the fridge for about 2-4 weeks.
While your mouth waters anticipating the flavor explosion you have just set yourself up for, take a moment to delight in the health benefits of the additional ingredients.
*Daikons reduce food stagnation and break up phlegm.
*Garlic is often used as an anti-pathogenic agent as it can help kill harmful bacteria, viruses, parasitic and fungal infections.
*Chinese Peppercorn is in the medicinal category of “warming the middle” meaning it supports the digestive fire.
Both the garlic and peppercorn are known to tonify yang in Chinese medicine. The combined warming qualities of the garlic and peppercorn are balanced by the cooling nature of the radish, making it safe for even hot constitutions. All in all, it's balanced, healthy and tasty.
For nutritional approaches and snack suggestions more customized to your unique personal pattern, ask you acupuncturist at your next visit, we’re happy to help support you in all aspects of your health journey!
The prevalence of back pain and the number of patients seeking care with complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies in the US has increased.
Evidence suggests complementary therapies like acupuncture, spinal manipulation, massage, yoga, tai chi, chiropractic, biofeedback and mindfulness-based stress-reduction treatments can be helpful for back pain without drugs or surgery.
These therapies can help ease muscle tension, relieve pain, and correct posture while strengthening muscles and improving joint stability.
The most prevalent CAM therapies for back pain in the US are spinal manipulation, acupuncture, and massage.
Acupuncture and Back Pain
Lower Back Pain (LBP) is one of the most common types of chronic back pain and is often caused by lumbar muscle strain and sprains. Adults between the ages of 18 to 64 years represent 72% of all low back pain healthcare visits.
There are many studies on treatment methods for lower back pain, including the efficacy of acupuncture in managing this pain. In a comprehensive study, 454,920 patients with at least one of the three chronic pain conditions including headache, low back pain and osteoarthritis were treated with acupuncture. Effectiveness of acupuncture was rated as marked or moderate in 76% of the patients.
A meta-analysis reviewing nearly 20,000 people for chronic pain, including chronic back pain, found that those who received real acupuncture compared to those who received sham acupuncture or no acupuncture, experienced 50% improvement in chronic pain.
The study concluded, “Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain and is therefore a reasonable referral option.”
More recently, a systematic review and meta-analysis of effects of acupuncture on pain and function in non-specific low back pain, found that acupuncture is more effective at pain relief than sham acupuncture or no treatment at all. Acupuncture with usual care methods for back pain is more effective than just usual care alone, making acupuncture an important supplemental treatment to usual care methods, according to this study.
In TCM theory, digestion represents the central axis around which everything else revolves. It provides our main source of (post-natal) energy from the breakdown and absorption of food. Even minor disruptions in this system can progress to significant and varied health problems.
Treatment, of course, depends on the severity of the problem. As long as emergency situations are ruled out or addressed, one can turn to Chinese medicine for prevention, treatment and maintenance. And the power of self-care can never be understated. Acupressure is one of our best self-care tools when used appropriately.
While the needles (and the added effect of electrostimulation of needles) are generally considered a stronger approach to energy medicine than acupressure, acupressure alone has proved extremely beneficial. For example, in a study of 70 hemodialysis patients with constipation where acupressure was administered 3 times/week for 4 weeks, there was a significant improvement in bowel function .
So here are 3 Acupressure points that you can press to help you digest:
LARGE INTESTINE 4, “union valley”
Location: fleshy (and often achy) depression between the thumb and first finger
Use to: regulate intestinal function.
Stimulation of this point has been shown to both increase and decrease gastric motility depending on what’s needed. So, it can be used for both constipation and diarrhea.
CONCEPTION VESSEL 12: “middle controller”
Location: about 4 inches above navel
Use to: regulate stomach function, support energy
It has been shown to cause muscle relaxation via the somatosympathetic pathway, and inhibits gastric acid secretion which is extremely beneficial to GERD patients.
STOMACH 36: “3 mile leg”
Location: about 3inches below knee cap and about 1 inch towards outer edge of leg
Use to: strengthen digestion, build blood and immunity
According to some studies, it may improve upper and lower abdominal symptoms by restoring impaired ‘slow waves’ of the digestive tract via the vagal pathway. Electroacupuncture on this channel has been shown to enhance gastric motility and blood flow by regulating hormones (such as motilin and somatostatin) that directly affect digestion.
Benefits have been shown to be intensity dependent, so massage these points as often as needed. Just be sure to get in for some acupuncture where we can give these points (and more!) the extra attention they may need
Anxiety is an increasing problem worldwide.
A 2009 WHO World Mental Health Survey found that anxiety was the most prevalent form of mental health disorder.
According to the most up to date evidence, acupuncture is an effective treatment for anxiety. In 2017, The Acupuncture Evidence Project, co-authored by Dr John McDonald, PhD and Dr Stephen Janz was published, providing an up-to-date comparative review of the clinical and scientific evidence for acupuncture.
This comprehensive document, updating two previous reviews, determined that acupuncture is moderately effective in treating anxiety according to high level evidence.
Their evidence included a 2016 systematic review with over 400 randomised patients that concluded that ‘the effects from acupuncture for treating anxiety have been shown to be significant as compared to conventional treatments. The largest of these studies, which included 120 randomized patients, found that acupuncture had a large effect on reducing anxiety and depression compared to conventional treatment involving pharmacological approaches and psychotherapy, with over twice the reduction in symptoms.
A more recent systematic review published in 2018 found that all 13 included studies “reported an anxiety decrease for their treatment group relative to the control groups.” Three of these studies used pharmaceuticals as controls.
Source: Errington-Evans N. (2015). Randomised controlled trial on the use of acupuncture in adults with chronic, non-responding anxiety symptoms. Acupuncture in medicine : journal of the British Medical Acupuncture Society, 33(2), 98–102. https://doi.org/10.1136/acupmed-2014-010524
The start of spring is an exciting time as the weather clears up, the plants start to bloom, and a new season begins. Many use this as an opportunity to organize their lives and revamp their daily routines, and finding ways to de-stress and improve your mental health is a great way to start fresh. While it feels rewarding to develop new habits, too much all at once can cause stress, which can have a negative effect on your overall health. Stress is linked to serious health issues like insomnia, heart disease, anxiety, and headaches. If you’re looking for obtainable goals this spring, consider developing new habits that can reduce your stress and help boost your emotional wellbeing.
Address Your Mental Health
To start, it’s important to be self-aware and understand your current mental state. According to MentalHealth.gov, our mental health determines how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s undeniable that people of all ages have dealt with stress and are struggling with mental health. According to a report from Mental Health America, “the number of people looking for help with anxiety and depression has skyrocketed.” Luckily, there are plenty of ways for you to have a relaxing and mindful spring.
Many people strive to get in shape as the weather gets warmer and you spend more time outside. However, exercise doesn’t just improve your physical health, but your mental health as well. Exercise has been proven to ease symptoms of anxiety and depression by increasing endorphins and taking your mind off worries. Meeting exercise goals can help improve your confidence and expose you to more social interaction. Something as simple as meeting new people at your local gym or seeing a neighbor while out on a walk can help boost your mood.
Working out for even 30 minutes a day can help significantly improve your state of mind. The internet is a great resource for ways to keep active. You can find free exercise videos online, along with fitness plans. Consider using fitness apps to set yourself up for success with a routine and exercises to follow.
Create a Budget
It’s no secret that finances can impact your mental health. If you’re worried about money, you’re not alone. Whether your stress stems from debt, unexpected expenses, or loss of a job, financial worry is a common stressor in modern life. According to a study done by the American Psychological Association, 72% of Americans feel stressed about money at least some of the time.
Creating a budget is helpful to see where your finances stand. Make a list of your expenses and income to get an understanding of your current financial state. Using budgeting apps can help you organize your spending and determine where you need to cut back. Get organized by looking at the balances and interest rates on what you owe.
If you’re looking to save up some extra cash, try creating extra sources of income. Side hustles like freelancing on top of your typical income can be a great source of extra money. You can also potentially save money on your monthly expenses by shopping around for lower insurance rates or looking for ways to lower your monthly phone bill. If you’re a homeowner, look into how and when to refinance a mortgage to save some extra money. By taking advantage of lower interest rates and utilizing the cash-out refinance option, you’ll be able to secure additional funds to cover any larger or unexpected expenses.
Pick Up a Hobby
Hobbies have the potential to create happiness and positivity in your life, as well as the capability to relieve stress and lower blood pressure. You may have been involved in sports and clubs as a child, but it’s just as important to keep learning, growing, and doing things you enjoy in your adult life. Having an outlet you can lean on for mental stimulation and stress relief keeps you feeling fulfilled in life. A hobby doesn’t have to be anything difficult or expensive, rather an activity that you enjoy doing in your leisure time.
Many hobbies are home-based and can be done safely during the pandemic, such as arts and crafts, reading, puzzles, drawing, and knitting. Connecting with nature can support your wellness and music has also been proven to elevate your mood. Slow tempo music allows for a relaxing effect by calming your mind and lowering the stress hormone cortisol in your body. While listening to music can be considered a hobby, creating music can also be a powerful way to alleviate stress. Learning to play an instrument can be an obtainable hobby this spring.
Take Time for Yourself
Between balancing your social, home, and work life, you may feel like you have a lot on your plate. Having a busy schedule is when you need to practice self-care and focus on your mental health the most so you can feel your best this spring. Create time throughout the day to recenter and focus on yourself. Even carving out 10 minutes out of your day to practice deep breathing and meditation can positively impact your mental health. Creating time to speak to a mental health professional or using apps that help with anxiety can significantly improve your emotional wellbeing.
Be sure to settle down at the end of the night. Sleep deprivation can be both a cause and effect of stress. It’s known that little sleep increases your risk of health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity. Your daily habits significantly impact your stress levels and sleeping habits. Take care of yourself by eating a healthy diet and stop consuming caffeine 6 hours before bed.
Mental health has an effect on many aspects of our health, including emotional, psychological, and social wellness. Use the start of a new season to focus on de-stressing and understanding the importance of your mental health.
Rebecca M H Kitzerow is a Licensed Acupuncturist practicing in La Center, Washington. With over a decade of experience she has won 10 Nattie consumer choice awards from Natural Awakenings Magazine since 2014.