Summer is a “yang season,” and therefore, everything expands and grows abundantly. Summer belongs to the fire element and its color is red. Summer is connected to the heart and its emotions are joy and love.
In the summer time, the body tries to expel heat from the inside because as all of nature expands and grows, so our body does, too. You need to be active so the body can expel the Qi it stores up. Sweating out all the toxins you carry is good for you. If you stay in an air conditioned room all day, your body will suffer in the fall. Fall is the season that your body’s Qi will shrink. Even if you want to sweat out the toxins in the fall, the toxins will not come out as easily as during the summer time.
When the body gets warm in the summer, only the surface of your body heats up—not the inside of your body. The inside of your body is actually cold during this time. If you drink too much ice cold water, it can cause stomach pain or diarrhea. Drink room temperature water to prevent your insides from becoming too cold. To experience coolness, drink hot water, so the cold Qi inside your body will “escape. “
In summer, the sun rises early and sets late. Therefore, since we are a “micro universe,” ourselves, we should also follow nature’s rhythm. Get up early and stay up late, but do not stay up after midnight. Since you get up early and stay up late, take a short nap in the midday.
To sweat out the heat and toxins from your body, you need to add pungent tastes to your diet. It will warm up your interior. To warm up the inside of your body, cook chicken with ginseng and garlic. Ginseng has warming properties that enter the heart area. It is the best herb for restoring an exhausted body. However, be careful! Too much sweating can make your heart become depleted. The red insides of watermelon will enter the heart meridian and help your heart Qi. Eat plenty of watermelon in the summer.
It is very common to have restless sleep or have difficulty falling asleep because the heart becomes very active in the summer time. Try to stay calm toward evening, so your Qi can settle down. Sheng Mai San is a good herbal formula for summer. It stops excessive sweating and generates fluid. It calms the mind so it helps insomnia and palpitations.
Once again, here are some ideas for staying in “tip-top” shape all during the summer:
1. Stay active to release heat from the body
2. Do not stay in an air conditioned room all day
3. Do not consume too much cold food or drink
4. Get up early and stay up late during the summer, but not after midnight
5. Rest during the midday because the heart meridian time is noon.
6. Add pungent tastes to your diet, like ginseng and garlic
7. Eat ginseng chicken soup and watermelon often