Springtime Love for your Liver

Hello and happy spring! Any of this ring a bell for you?

You feel irritable or frustrated

You’re sluggish and tired

Your digestion seems off

You’re having headaches

You find yourself sighing a whole lot (maybe in irritation…)

Your periods have been hellish recently

If any of those have popped up for you and you’re wondering why, here’s why: it’s springtime!

I can hear you thinking, “But spring is great! The mountain laurels and red buds are blooming! I can wear sandals again!” All of that is true! But spring is also liver season, and the transition from winter to spring can be tricky, especially in our hyper-productive society that doesn’t allow much time for winter hibernation.

Spring is associated with the liver in Chinese medicine. It’s a time of growth and expansion, but it’s easy for things to get stuck, and our livers are made to process things, not be stuck. Suppressing emotions, not getting enough water or physical activity, heavy foods, and lack of sleep can all make it difficult to grow your (metaphorical) tiny green leaves and flowers.

Human beings contain huge amounts of potential energy at all times, but we have to keep that energy flowing. When flow is restricted, it’s like a kink in your garden hose. The water won’t come out, and over time that hose is going to crack from too much pressure. The result? Frustration, irritation, fatigue.

So how do you move into spring full of flow, growth, and joy? Add some (or all) of these simple solutions into your life:

Drink plenty of water with a squeeze of lemon or lime (the liver loves sour things).

Move your body in whatever way feels good – don’t overdo it if your winter has been sedentary. Walking, yoga, qigong, and stretching are all perfect if you haven’t been moving a lot lately.

Eat springtime green veggies.

Let yourself feel anger, sadness, and fear – and then let them go with kindness. The best way to move through being stuck is deep love and compassion for yourself.

Breathe deeply.

Get outside: take a hike, look at the sky, get your hands in the dirt, take your shoes off in the grass.

Take time to think about what you want to see MORE of in your life. Think of ways to make that growth happen.

Need some extra help? Acupuncture is a great tool for seasonal transitions and the discomfort that can come with them. Schedule a free 15 minute consultation or (for existing patients) schedule a followup appointment.

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