What's So Special About Late Summer?
It's still summer for a few more weeks...but I'm sure we are all feeling the start of fall. In Chinese medicine, we call this season late summer or the fifth season. This fifth season is the Late summer is a time of the earth, harvest, and transition. It is a great time to take inventory of the past few months, start to settle and plan for the fall and enjoy some rest while we still have warmth and sun. Sometimes the summer is jam packed and this late summertime is perfect for winding down in preparation for cooler weather and shorter days.
As with every season, there are characteristics and associations in late summer that can be used to help improve your health and readiness for what comes next. This season is one of my favorites for its implication that it's ok to slow down while still enjoying the sweet warmth of summer days.
Late summer is the time of the Spleen and Stomach, making it the best season to balance your digestion. After all the bright fresh foods of summer, it is time to think about incorporating more root vegetables and maybe even some soups or warm breakfasts. Enjoy lots of yellow foods during this time like squashes, apricots, peaches, corn, cabbages, lemon, pumpkin, and yellow peppers. Take a few moments to assess your digestion and nutrition. Listen to cues such as bloating, heartburn, or irregular bowel movements that mean your digestion needs some attention. This is the perfect season to bring eating back home to fresh cooked, home prepared meals if you've enjoyed a summer of eating out and going to bbqs and parties.
The emotion connected to the earth element and therefore late summer is worry or overthinking. If you are finding that anxiety has heightened or you are overthinking, consider checking in with your meditation practice. This time of year should be about centering, grounding, ease, and simplicity. Allow your mind to wind down and use the tools you have to gift yourself some mental rest. Digest what this summer has offered and clear your plate for fall. Take some mindful walks, write in your journal, get acupuncture! Staying active while also allowing time for rest and reflection is the perfect harmony for this season when you want to keep your qi and blood moving while also leaving space for mental and physical recovery from peak summer busyness.
As humans, we are strong, resilient, and can manage a lot. We ask our body to perform optimally every day and this season is a perfect time to take care of your physical body, regulate and harmonize. What comes next is cooler and it's important to support yourself in this transition. We say that summer is yang within yang and fall is yin within yang. Start inviting the yin into your life now by slowing down a little bit and recovering so that you, your body, your mind, your immune system are ready for fall.
I'm Amy! I'm an acupuncturist, herbalist, registered nurse, and expert in women's health, anxiety, and stress relief.
If you are looking for acupuncture, herbal medicine, or cupping in Denver, Lakewood, or Golden Colorado, get more info here.
**All information and resources found on balancedstonewellness.com are based on the opinions, experience, and research of the author unless otherwise noted. All information is intended to educate and motivate readers to make their own health decisions after consulting with their health care provider...even if that provider may be the author ;)