Heart Season

 Heart Season

By Jennifer Kelleher

At the start of each new season, I like to take some time to connect with that season’s energy and align my mindset for the months ahead. I think about where I am now and where I would like to be at the end of the season. Then, I refresh my daily rituals and routines to support my evolution in a way that is balanced and enjoyable for the season. In today’s column, I am going to share some of my learnings about summer energy as outlined in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), which teaches us to live in harmony with nature so that we can do our best to stay healthy all year long.

Summer is the most yang season of the year, representing outward energy, expansion, movement, activity, and play! It corresponds with the heart organ and the element of fire. Did you know that with every one degree rise in body temperature, our heart beats an extra 10 beats per minute? To avoid seasonal imbalances, such as impulsiveness, insomnia, heart palpitations, irritability, anxiety, restlessness, bipolar tendencies, excessive sweating, and red complexion, it is important to nurture the heart organ by taking the necessary dietary and lifestyle measures to balance any excess heat in the body. For example, connecting with the water element through cool baths or showers and swimming is a nice way to calm extra fire in the body.

Following the pattern of the sun, TCM recommends waking up early and staying up later, taking a rest mid-day if needed. The body’s energy is at its height during summer, making it a great time to take action on what we were planning and initiating during winter and spring. Regular exercise is important during this time of year to keep energy lines open and flowing. Ocean Bliss Yoga, located on the third floor of the Belle Harbor Yacht Club, will be offering a special schedule for summer beginning June 24, with added early morning and late evening classes to support you in your summer wellness routine. See our schedule at oceanblissyoga.net.

The taste associated with summer is bitter. Bitter foods, like arugula, kale, grapefruit, and cruciferous vegetables, help to purge excess heat and fire from the body. It is also recommended to eat more cooling foods and herbs, like cucumber, mint, tomato, and fish, during the summer to balance the warm environmental temperatures. This is the only time of year TCM suggests incorporating raw, cold foods, like salads and smoothies, in the diet. Take out or limit heavy, oily, fried foods, along with dairy and dark meats to avoid indigestion. Finally, in terms of diet, staying hydrated is especially crucial during this time of year.

The emotion of summer is joy! Summer can feel exuberant, exciting, and a lot like falling in love. There is a lighter, more laid-back, carefree energy in the air. It is a great time to let go of grudges and do things from a place of joy, with happiness and laughter.

I invite you to join me at Ocean Bliss Yoga Studio next Wednesday, June 19, for a Summer Solstice Sound Bath Ceremony to fill your cup for the season ahead and start this new time of year with heartfelt intention. View the offering and sign up at oceanblissyoga.net. Call or text me with any questions at 917-318-1168.


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