Summer: Season of the Heart

When I think of June I always think of the beginning of long, hot summer days balanced out by a LOT of swimming in Deep Eddy or our neighborhood pools. Summer means we are moving out of Wood (Spring) and into the Fire phase of Chinese Medicine. In fact, the Summer Solstice was upon us this week on June 21st - the longest day of sunlight in the year! 


Summertime means warmth, light, activity, elation, and socializing. In Chinese medicine, summer is also the season of the heart organ, and during this season we should strive to balance the heart organ system with our food, actions, and intention.

The heart is seen as the emperor of the body, governing the blood and blood vessels, and storing our Spirit. It acts as a leader for the body and maintains order of thought and intention. If there is no order, chaos will occur and you may have anxiety, insomnia, inappropriate behavior, discomfort around people, heart palpitations, panic attacks, or stuttering. Just as blood pumped from the heart communicates with our cells, bringing them oxygen and nutrients, our heart is also responsible for social communication and thrives on love and warmth from people.

To keep the heart in balance during the hot summer months use the following foods: salads, fruits, beets, carrots, cucumbers, cabbage, melons, brown rice, tofu, celery, sesame, slightly bitter greens, or longan fruit. Eat less red meat, fats, and extremely spicy foods. Stay connected with family and friends. Balance the fire and activity of summer with enough rest and time in the water! Water balances Fire. Meditation is also a valuable tool for quieting the busy Fire-type mind.