Winter Diet to Support Your Health

We are smack in the middle of winter right now, with about 6 more weeks until spring officially arrives. The warmer, longer days may seem far off but it is a good time to think about choosing some supportive foods to help your immune system stay strong. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the immune system is known as “protective qi” and the stronger it is, the healthier we stay. Coming out of the winter with strong protective qi ensures that when spring time allergy season hits, our bodies will be much more ready to cope with it.

Below are some general guidelines on how Traditional Chinese Medicine recommends we eat during the winter:

  • Soups and stews – warm, easy to digest, soups and stews make it easy for our bodies to absorb nutrients.
  • Root vegetables – including onions, garlic, sweet potatoes, parsnips, turnips.
  • Fruits: Apples, cranberry, dates, Dried fruit, grapes, Kiwi, oranges, pears, pomegranate, persimmon, Tangerine
  • Vegetables: Broccoli, bok choy, cabbage, chard, ginger, garlic, kale, leeks, onions, parsnip, potatoes, rutebega, spinach, squash, sweet potato, turnip
  • Nuts and seeds: Almond, Brazil, cashew, filbert, macadamia, pecan, pignola. Pistachio, walnut, Flax, pumpkin, sesame, sunflower
  • Beans : adzuki, black, black eye, carob, garbanzo, Great Northern, kidney, lentil, lima, Navy, peanut, pink, red, soy, white
  • Grains: (cooked): amaranth, barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, quinoa, wild rice, rye, wheat
  • Miso paste and seaweeds- used to flavor or be the base of broths

Not sure how to use some of these items? Here are some of my favorite recipes to keep on hand, as you get through the winter months:

Magic Mineral Broth– Great for the beginning stages of a cold

Miso Salmon– Wonderful week night dinner

Root Vegetable Hash– Great with eggs in the morning

Roasted Nuts– Add the flavor of your choice. (I love rosemary)

Kitcheri– Great to warm the body and ease digestion

Stay healthy out there!

 

 

 

 

What Now?

Happy New Year! I hope 2018 has started off well for you.

January is historically an interesting month. In addition to the cold days that are typically low on sunshine, many of us are in a “post-holiday” slump. The social connection and the excitement of the holidays are past and the next few months hold few celebratory events. Many of us also had a few days off over these last few weeks and getting back to the routine of work and every day life can feel like a struggle. So, now what?

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), it is suggested that we follow the seasons with our diet, exercise and social activity. Winter is seen as a time to spend more time at home, get to bed earlier and take some moments for self reflection. It can be seen as a time of hibernation, to restore the energy we have expended during the warmer months and longer days. So, January is a great time to catch up on that book you’ve been meaning to read, cook some warm, nourishing foods and maybe get to bed much earlier than normal. Maybe now would be a great time to try that yoga class you have been interested in, instead of hitting the gym for an intense workout. Remember that TCM sees this “introverted” time as a way to store up for the spring, when new growth and change typically occurs with the increase in energy many of us feel.

As always, supporting your immune system is key. IHD can always help you stay healthy with an acupuncture tune up or with our herbal support. Our favorite, Ultonic, is on sale right now in bottles and travel packs.

IHD Updates

We are also excited to introduce Melanie Benninger to IHD. Melanie is a certified Acupressurist. Read more here about her practice and how to schedule with her. This is a great option for people who are still unsure of the needles used in acupuncture or for those who are unable to be needled.

Last, as you know, Evolve Personal Wellness is a side project connect to IHD. You will be seeing Evolve newsletters in your email inbox. We hope that this information will be helpful to you, but please feel free to unsubscribe if you would rather not receive them in the future.

Here’s to a great 2018!

Goals Instead of Resolutions

I know I am not alone when it comes to feeling amazed that it is already the end of 2017. So many of us start thinking about setting “resolutions” for the new year. How about thinking about starting the new year with goals instead?

Webster defines resolution as: ” a firm decision to do or not to do something.”

Alternatively, a goal is defined as: “the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.

To me, a goal feels like a more positive, and if need be, flexible focus. It also has the potential to be as specific or generalized as we want it to be. Goals don’t necessarily have to be fully “achieved” or “not achieved”. Maybe we accomplish some part of that goal that informs us how to set a new goal based on what we have learned.

The beginning of a new year ushers in a natural starting point to work towards new goals. There are a few ways we can look at how to do that. We can set them by the period of time we focus on a goal (short, medium, long term) or we can think about the measurable result we hope to see (as in SMART goals- Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time -sensitive). However you decide to set goals, make sure it feels like it is encouraging you in a positive way and helping you be a good version of yourself. Goals based on fear, negative consequences or those that are imposed by others are less likely to be successful or feel good to work towards.

Goal setting can happen at any time of the year, but now tends to be a common time that many of us think about how we would like to spend the up coming new year. If this sounds good to you, set aside some time to think about and write down your goals. Sharing them with someone can help you stay accountable on your commitment to yourself. Professional Coaches are a great resource to help you set reasonable goals and for sticking to them. IHD is always happy to help put you in touch with someone who can help you be your best self.

Evolve: A Year of Wellness is a program that helps people set goals and figure out the steps to achieving those goals. We can even adjust them together as we go. A Year of Wellness can help you move towards being your best version of you.

However you start your new year, know that IHD is wishing you a safe, healthy, happy start to 2018. We are so glad to have you in our community.

In good health,
Jennifer