Following the Flow of the Seasons

 In Health & Wellbeing

“Fall is the season of Harvest, a time to pull inward and gather together on all levels, a time to store up fuel, food, warm clothing – a time to study and plan for the approaching stillness of winter.”
Pitchford, P. Healing with Whole Foods p.346

As the weather begins it’s change into the cooler months, Autumn begins to give way to Winter and Yang (Hot) is about to complete its transformation to Yin (Cool). In TCM it is important to follow this transformation with the way we lead our lives – just as our busy social periods of  summer gives way to the more cosy, withdrawn and reflective nature of Winter. Perhaps it is time to consider your inner journey at this time? Give yourself the freedom to reflect, rest, meditate and follow the Wu Wei (non- action, flowing with the Dao). Autumn is part of the Metal element which controls the Lungs and is most susceptible to dryness – so manage any dry symptoms (dry skin, thirst, dry cough etc.) with foods that nourish dryness like soy products, mushrooms, spinach, pearl apple and barley. Autumnal flavour is sour and astringent – the  consolidation of energy moving inwards – use fermented products like sauerkraut, vinegar, yoghurts, lemons, limes etc.

Try your hand at slow cooked, nourishing meals that support your Yin – avoiding much of the Cold Raw foods that may damage it. Go to bed earlier, rise later. Eat most food earlier in the day when the Yang is rising and less in the latter part of the day as the Yin is rising. Enjoy the ebb and flow of energy in tune with the seasons – remember we cannot be Yang all the time and need to stop, reflect and take it slow once in a while!!

Suggested Reading:

Live Well Live Long – Peter Deadman

Davut’s Chicken Chick Pea Turkish Hotpot, with Rice and Garlic Yoghurt

Chicken Chickpea HotPot

2 free range chicken breasts
4 carrots
1 brown onion
4 pieces of celery
2 cans of chickpeas
Half bottle of passata
Salt, pepper, cumin,thyme,dried basil, chilli flakes

90 minutes cooking time

Cooking Method

1- Sear chicken for 3 minutes on each side to brown

2- Put chicken in to the oven for 20 minutes at 180 degrees

3- After oven cut chicken into small cubed size

4 -Chop brown onion and some garlic. Add some olive oil and slowly cook them. Add small cube cut carrots and celery. Cook them for 5 minutes and add your chicken.

5 – Mix half bottle of passata with some hot water and add to your meal just enough to cover all and add your chickpeas.
Add salt, pepper, thyme, basil and chilli flakes then cook for 15 minutes on medium heat and after cook for 70 minutes on low heat.

Rice recipe

1 cup Basmati rice
1 brown onion
Chicken stock

1 – Add butter to pan and add your rice then cook for 5 minutes
2- Add hot water to mix with the chicken stock – enough to cover the rice
3 – Cook for 2 minutes on medium heat and after that – 15 minutes on very low make sure lid is on throughout cooking and only once half way through open and add salt pepper then replace lid.

Garlic yogurt
One Lebanese cucumber finely chopped
Creamy yogurt (Greek Yoghurt)
Little garlic
Dry thyme, mint

Put yogurt in a big bowl add little garlic salt thyme, and mint – chop your cucumber into very small cubes and mix it up.

Quick relaxation meditation for the end of the day before sleep: Once all cosy in bed, lie flat on your back. Start by scrunching up your toes on an in breath, count to 5 and then completely release your toes on an out breath for a count of 5. Next progress to the ankle region and try with your imagination to squeeze all that area for a count of 5 on an in breath, then again release for a count of 5 on the out breath. Do this – moving up your body in areas right to your facial muscles and top of the head (don’t forget your fingers and arms too). By the time you have finished here you will be so relaxed you may even be asleep!

Don’t forget to book a monthly acupuncture tune up session with me at Scarborough Traditional Acupuncture Centre – prevention is always better than the cure!

Happy rest of Autumn!

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