An ancient Chinese adage says: "A tree grows from the roots." Yin and yang and the Five Elemental Energies form the primary roots in the Taoist tree of health, life, energy, and harmony. 

Nourishing our body each season nourishes the root, which can help us to be balanced, avoid illness, and restore vital energy. As we approach fall, our journey to optimum health continues with "Fall Nourishment."

Towards the end of summer comes an interlude of perfect balance during which Fire burns down and energy mellows, transforming itself into the elemental energy of Earth-late summer.

Earth energy is essential in maintaining digestion and absorption, as well as metabolic function.

As summer passes into autumn, the energy of Earth transforms into Metal, as related to fall. During the Metal phase, energy begins to condense, contract, and draw inward for accumulation and storage, just as the crops of summer are harvested and stored in autumn for use in winter.

Metal Energy

Metal energy controls the organ "Lungs," which extract and store vital energy from the air and expel wastes from the blood, the skin, and the large intestine, eliminating solid waste while retaining and recycling water. Autumn is the season of retrospection and meditative insight, for shedding old skin and dumping the excess baggage of external attachments and emotions accumulated in summer, just as trees shed their leaves and bees drive drones from the hive at this time of year. 

Resisting this energy by clinging sentimentally to past attachments can cause melancholy, grief, and anxiety, manifesting themselves physiologically in breathing difficulties, chest tightness, skin problems, low energy, and vulnerable to disease. 

Fall is an excellent season to practice letting go, move forward and then flourish. It is also a perfect season to strengthen our immune system and maintain a balanced immune system, which is crucial in helping to prevent flu, colds, Covid-19, and other respiratory ailments.

I want to share some holistic health tips with you, my reader, and I hope to help you maintain a balanced health. In this ongoing Covid war, I want to help my readers prevent Covid infection or help to speed recovery if anyone is infected with Covid. Covid must end with our effort.

Daily Practices:

Protect our digestive system with diet changes

No matter what kind of diet you have been eating, you can still use these guidelines.

  • Try to stay vegetarian or partially vegetarian, which helps balance our digestive system, not overload with meats.
  • Food variety: try to eat a variety of food, including the food you don't like. Our body needs various nutrients that help to maintain our metabolic function and immune system. When you prepare the food you don't like, try to put some spices in your cooking, you may like it after all.
  • Portion: avoid a large portion meal at dinner time, which is not easy, but can be done with effort. It is very important to maintain a health digestive system and help prevent weight gain, heart disease, diabetes, and other metabolic diseases.

Practice Qigong Daily

Qigong is my lifesaver, which is why I want to share this jewel with the world. Practice Qigong early in the morning, and you will have energy for the whole day. My favorite Qigong is "Spiritual Dance with Qi," which I have taught on Zoom since Covid started.

Utilize Your Mindset

Mindset affects everything in life. If your mindset is to maintain good health, you will do whatever is necessary for improving your health. You will be willing to make changes, be ready to learn, and be willing to practice. Set your mind, you can free yourself from the medical drama.

The mindset in our environment is also essential. Human is part of the nature, and nature changes affect the human body and human energy.

Think about what we can do to protect our Earth and protect our environment. Don't let the commercial world blind your eyes and confuse your mind; neither let political turmoil affect your emotion. Think about the bigger picture rather than being controlled by the commercial world.

The more people put action to protect our planet, the better air we will have, a healthy habitat, less pollution, and more peace and harmony. Our behavior and action can make a difference on our planet.

Start with simple things: drink filtered water or boiled water, rather than plastic bottled water; drive less, walk more, or use public transportation if available; avoid litter, especially litter in the ocean; avoid wasting electricity; re-use bags, or bring your bag when shopping.

It is about the Mindset of protecting our planet and protecting ourselves. Together, we can achieve. If divided, we all suffer.

Get Outdoors

Fresh air, abundant oxygen, and beautiful scenery are all good for our health. We at Tai Chi & Qigong Healing Institute have outdoor practice on Sunday for our members and our students. Our outdoor practice is from October to June in Sarasota.

Enjoy Music

Whether you sing or play instruments, music is a booster for your adrenaline and serotonin. We sometimes sing at our events, training programs (in person), or member quarterly Zoom parties. Not only will you feel happier during singing, but you will also breathe deeper, bring more oxygen to the body, and exercise your vocal cord, in which several Yin meridians pass through.

Drink Plenty of Water

Dehydration is very common when people have a busy schedule. It is easy to be so focused on work that you forget to drink water. Dehydration does not always give you a signal, but it is too late when you realize you are dehydrated. Some symptoms are: headache, dizzy, light-headed, cranky, mood swing, low energy, inpatient, and much more. If you put your mind to "health," you will remind yourself to drink more water. The baseline is 64 oz per day. Summertime can be more than 64 oz. Soup, juice, tea can be part of it.

Hang Out with People with a Similar Mindset

When your friends' circle is into health, it is easier to pay attention to self-care and self-nourishment. When your friends' circle is into drinking, the energy is different. It is your choice who you want to hang out with. Hang out with people focused on health/happiness/smart living from all over the United States and the world.

I hope you have a wonderful autumn with a daily smile, happiness, good energy, and spirit!

The above is an original article by Dr. Aihan Kuhn found in her August 2021 "Natural Healing Newsletter."  Dr. Kuhn is also the co-author with Dr. Catherine Kurosu, of the four-part series, "True Wellness."  The newest book in the series is True Wellness for Your Gut, publication date, October 2020, YMAA Publication Center, ISBN: 9781594397455.