Even in the midst of our warm summer, the days are becoming noticeably shorter, the nights are cooling off and some trees are even starting to change…fall is almost here. According to the Chinese calendar, fall officially begins on August 7th.
In Chinese Medicine, fall corresponds to the metal element which represents organization and order. This is the perfect time to finish summer projects and to organize and prepare for the coming winter.
The emotions associated with metal are grief and sadness. Thus, fall is the time to “let go” of any negative emotions and clear your mind and heart to make way for a peaceful winter.
The metal element corresponds to the Lungs and Large Intestine. These organs are responsible for respiration, digestion and elimination. During this time, one may be more susceptible to respiratory challenges such as colds and sinus infections, as well as skin problems and constipation. It is therefore essential to avoid getting chilled even when it “seems” warm outside, stay hydrated and get sufficient rest. It is also when we move away from cold, uncooked foods such as salads and prepare warm, cooked foods such as steamed vegetables and soups.
Try incorporating the following nourishing foods into your fall cooking: apples, beets, bok choy, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, cinnamon, figs, garlic, ginger, leeks, pears, persimmons, pomegranates, rosemary, sage, thyme, whole grains, wild rice, winter squash and yams.
Wishing you a happy and healthy fall,
Traditional Chinese Medical Clinic