Looking at the emotion of the Lung in Traditional East Asian Medicine

Emotions are considered to be normal and healthy, it is only when they become extreme or uncontrollable that they can open the door to disease. Traditional East Asian Medicine believes them to be the major internal cause of disease within the body, but also the most easily influenced – meaning, that with the right attention and treatment, emotions and their corresponding ailments can change. The feeling of a lack of energy or enjoyment of life can be common to depression, grief and sadness — terms that often get blended together or used interchangeably. Although these states of being are closely intertwined, there are some distinct differences.

Grief is a direct response to loss: the death of a loved one, loss of a marriage or loss of a friend,” explains Beth Esposito, MS, LPCC-S, LSW, chief of clinical operations with Samaritan Behavioral Health in Dayton, Ohio.

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Autumn from the view of Traditional East Asian Medicine:

A quote from ‘The Yellow Emperors Classic of internal Medicine: In Ancient times those people who understood the Tao (the way of self-cultivation) patterned themselves upon the Yin and the Yang (the two principles in nature) and they lived in harmony.

This time of gratitude for the autumn harvest offers many lessons to be learned from observing nature’s cyclical transitions. Traditional East Asian Medicine is strongly based on the natural rhythms, expressions, and phases of nature.  Each season is viewed as possessing and expressing its own unique energy which directly influences all aspects of life, health, and balanced well being.  These seasonal characteristics are described by the Five Phase theory of Traditional East Asian Medicine. This theory correlates an element with each season:  Wood(Spring), Fire (Summer), Earth(Late Season), Metal(Autumn), Water(Winter).  The theory of the Five Phases can be dated back to the Zhou Dynasty (roughly 1000-700BC).  The evolution of this theory marked a monumental shift in the medicine.  This shift was one from an esoteric view of disease as being caused by evil spirits to the first leap towards a more naturalistic/scientific understanding of how lifestyle choices and the natural world around us directly influence our health and well being. Just as each season comes to full circle, each Element or Phase is present to some degree in all of us. When each element is functioning within us, it influences our health and our ability to transition and build on the next Phase. It is easy to compare these phases when we look at nature. If we take a seed, it has to be planted during a specific time of the year in order for it to germinate and push through the ground. It must continue to grow and flourish in order to blossom, bear fruit, ripen and the drop its own seeds to disperse. It is then crucial for the plant to pull its energy inward towards its roots and store up its vitality in order for it to have the energy to push back up inn spring and begin the cycle again. Each phase is necessary and vital to the process. The same holds true for us humans. Each one of us is moving through these phases, right alongside nature, whether we are aware of it or not. As with nature, if one of the phases in the cycle becomes stagnant, deficient, or excessive within a person, the whole process will be affected.

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October is Breast cancer awareness month

Researchers in Western medicine have discovered hormonal lifestyle, and environmental factors that my increase the risk of breast cancer. Cases reaching back to 3000BC are known to be described in medical writings.
However, the cause is still a mystery.

What does breast cancer represent in Traditional East Asian Medicine:

From a Traditional East Asian Medicine perspective, breast cancer, fibroids, mastitis and disease of breast tissue are related to qi movement in the body. Emotions, such as depression, anxiety, anger and worry may lead to a disruption of the flow of qi in the body. There are a number of meridians that pass through the chest and breasts, but the meridians most closely connected to breast health are the Liver, Kidney, Stomach und the extra Meridians the Ren and Chong. There are 4 main causes which are known to contribute to breast diseases:

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Wellness according to Season

In Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM) and the teaching of the Five Elements remind us of the opportunities to better our health and prevent disease. Our health is never a fixed state, just like the seasons, where we can clearly notice the change in nature. It is important, that we adjust to the natural rhythms and the flow of the earth. Addressing our health according to the season will help us to cultivate harmony, balance and holistic health throughout the year.

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Late Summer

In Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM), the second summer begins around mid-August and winds down with the Autumn Equinox on September 22. Europe seems to be experiencing an endless hot and dry summer this year. Late Summer is a transitional time between Summer and Autumn, and we start to feel that, despite the very hot days, the mornings tend to be cooler, giving us the opportunity to open windows and let cool air to circulate.

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Hello Summer!

It’s time to put your flip flops and tank tops on! The weather is heating up and we are coming up to summer solstice on June 21, when Summer is officially here. It marks the season of abundance. Looking at it from the perspective of Traditional East Asian Medicine, the weeks around the summer solstice also mark the longest days with June 21 being the most yang day of the year. With the many more hours of daylight, take every opportunity to socialize and enjoy the flourishing gardens with bugs abound. Do make time to exercise outdoors, however be extra careful when outdoors midday as it can feel exhausting without a beach, pool or lake nearby.

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What your lips can reveal about your health

In Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM), the mouth and lips belong to the 5 Element Earth, which embraces the Spleen and Stomach, part of the digestive system.

The color of your lips corresponds to the blood flow and the energy in the digestive organs.

Pink, red pale lips:
Normal lips are pink or pale red in color, without any cracks or cold sores are a good sign. It shows you are healthy and your Spleen is strong. The Person is known to have an even temperament. People with these lips can express themselves if they want to and hold back if they prefer. They can manage their moods and usually maintain consistency in mood.

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Healing Seasonal Allergies

Spring is a time for new beginnings, but for a some it signals a return to a familiar discomfort: Allergy season. Stuffy nose, sinus headaches, itchy eyes, fatigue and more can plague those with bad allergies.
Western medicine treatments for allergies focuses on symptom management, mainly using antihistamines and decongestants. They provide temporary relief, where as Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM) is addressing the underlying causes through a holistic approach. Allergies are believed to be rooted in the depletion of Qi (vital energy) in the body’s organ systems. Depletion can be in the kidneys, lungs, spleen and liver.

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Springing into the season

There is a reason people often get inspired to start spring cleaning this time of year. According to Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM), spring is the quintessential time of creating, cleansing, activity and movement, growth, and renewal.

Spring is when the rising yang qi becomes obvious, as nature bursts into live. Spring in TEAM is all about the Liver and Gallbladder, which are at their peak of activity during spring making it a perfect time to focus on giving extra support to their function.

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February – the month of love

Valentine’s day is over, but self-love is here to stay, not just in February, but every day of the year. Self-love is not a new age fad but rather a necessity. Self-care and self-compassion might actually be most needed by those who work far too hard and are constantly striving to perfection.
Most of times we are being too hard on ourselves, because we are driven by the desire to do everything right, all the time. Our inner voice tells us how we could have done the job much better – which entails a lot of self-criticism.

Most of us in the Western world have been brought up to believe that perfectionism is a great quality to have. Several studies show however, that perfectionism is actually harming us. It is harmful when it is excessive, and related to illnesses, such as irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, eating disorders, depression to name a few which have been linked to perfectionism. Perfectionists are also known to be more prone to anxiety and depression.

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