Holistic Health: Feeling great this fall and winter

Holistic Health: Feeling great this fall and winter

Tracy Zollinger

According to traditional Chinese medicine, which includes acupuncture, herbs and nutrition, winter is the time to nourish and recharge the kidneys and adrenals. Taking nature’s cue, this is a time for rest, energy conservation, and restoring your resources.

Winter is the time for reflection on the year past and anticipation of the year to come. This is a time when we are the most susceptible to draining our energy if we do not observe this way of life. So slow down and lighten your commitment and responsibility load.

Finally! An excuse to sleep in!

The classic Chinese text, the Nei Ching, advised people to go to sleep early and rise late in the winter. The reason for this, it explains, being that this is after the sun’s rays have warmed the atmosphere, which helps your body warm up easier in the winter months. Western science has confirmed that, in the winter, we need two to four more hours of sleep than we do during the other seasons. This is on top of the seven to eight hours we should already be getting. Give your immune system a big boost by making sure you are sleeping a minimum of nine hours a night this winter.

Stews and Grains and Nuts, Oh My!

Winter is the time to break out the Crock-Pot (or buy one) and eat warm, hearty stews, soups, whole grains, and roasted nuts. These foods help to warm your body’s core and to keep you nourished. A Crock-Pot slow cooks your ingredients at a low temperature. The low temperature ensures the nutrients are not destroyed and the slow cooking unlocks those nutrients, making them easy to digest and absorb. The best part is, you can set your recipe to cook and be ready when it is time to eat. Here are some good fall Crock-Pot recipes that will leave you feeling satisfied and nourished.

Keep Toasty

With the hot, then cold, then damp weather this time of the year, make sure to stay warm and dress in layers. Being caught without a jacket or wrap can lead to you getting chilled and, according to Chinese medicine, susceptible to illness. Scarves are a great accessory that can be a neck wrap, shoulder wrap or emergency jacket.

Let’s review! Here is your Checklist for a healthy fall and winter:

▪ Take it easy; lighten your schedule and commitments until spring
▪ Sleep early and well
▪ Eat seasonal foods that warm your insides
▪ Stay warm

‘Tis the season to be cozy!

Tracy Zollinger, is an Alameda mom, licensed acupuncturist and business owner. You can reach Tracy at 299-0057 or www.tracyzollinger.com.