suzana naturallifestyle 120The first days of March have gifted us with warm sunbeams and hope that the dreadfully long and cold winter is finally behind us. Wind, sun and clouds, passing snow showers, pouring rains, and unstable temperatures will be the staple mark of the season change in the next couple of weeks. Change is in the air -- expected, yet unpredictable.

Landscapes still appear grey and lifeless, but that is truly just appearance. Bursting energy of the spring is gathering its momentum in endless underground waterways connected with every single root ending. Movement surges to the surface. Life reawakens in an ascending motion of rich nutrients provided by soil and water. Clear blue skies and warm golden sunshine are adding to the excitement of brimming life. There is a tremendous tension created in awaiting for budding, sprouting, and shooting crescendo.  We all know it is going to happen, but the exact moment is uncertain.

Spring is the time of expansion and rapid new growth. Each bud, sprout, and shoot carves its way into a life of its own, freely, with simultaneous arousal and release of its first time appearance.

In Chinese philosophy and medicine the nature around us had been observed as integrative part of our own nature (physical, spiritual, emotional). Season of the spring represents Element of Wood. No wonder! Trees stand out aiming to the Heavens, grounded in the Earth as the pivots for all the life unfolding here on our planet. Dense nutrients from the deep roots produce rich saps moving upward to carry life to the branches and leaves.

Each element is associated with particular energetic pathways (channels) and corresponded organs. Liver and Gall Bladder represent Element of Wood.  Both channels have ascending quality and support upward movement. They move energy all around the body, animate the muscles and tendons, arouse the mind with new plans, and wake up courageous warriors who strive to explore undiscovered landscapes. Energy flows smoothly and benevolently to support awakening in each cell.  Like the tree has no hesitation or lack of determination in striving toward the sky, these organs are eager to work and regenerate over and over again.

Of course, this is an ideal scenario. Most people on these first days of spring or last days of winter feel everything but 'free flow'. Some of us feel sluggish, tired with no energy. The body feels heavy. Some of us are becoming very impatient, prone to anger outbursts, restless or bored and frustrated. There is some work which could be done to gently push away confined energy of the winter and welcome bursting energy of the spring.

1. Exercise

Just start moving. Choose your prefered aerobic activity, whether it's walking, running, dancing, or practicing invigorating yoga or Qi Gong. It is preferable to enjoy any type of exercise where all extremities are equally used and we pace ourselves well enough to sweat. When stretching it is good to pay special attention to the sides of the body.

2. Diet

Liver comes into the spotlight in the spring time in various alternative health regimes. When 'Liver Detox' is Googled over 3 million links appear! 'Liver Detox' is one of the most popular, and I daresay, most misused terms in holistic health circles among heathy life style enthusiasts and definitely in the profit driven market. Why is this term so incorrectly used? We don't detoxify our Liver. Liver detoxifies us. And it is not just the Liver. There are our Kidneys too and other important organ systems.

Be careful with offered fasting and juicing protocols and potent cleansing herbal remedies. Always make sure to be guided by a qualified health care practitioner. Fasting practices are common in many spiritual and religious traditions were they have a purpose beyond just the physical realm. If you consider fasting, retreat and seclusion from mundane life would be necessary and welcome to integrate spiritual experiences and benefit the body.

I always vote for gentle long term dietary adjustment, where body is well nourished and supported, and in the same time stimulated to shift in new directions.  Start your day with warm lemon water. Try to eat vegetables which grow from the soil up, like asparagus, artichokes, kohlrabi, celery stalks, green leafy vegetables, scallions, rhubarb, all kind of sprouts… the greener the better, but make sure to season them with pungent and warming spices. Enjoy radishes and carrots. Forage wild edible plants. Substitute peace of bacon with leaner meat option. If you don't eat meat enjoy smaller beans like lentils, mung beans, adzuki beans and black eyed peas. Stay away from all processed foods and try to avoid sugar completely aside from splash of maple syrup. Cut down dairy products. Eat your last meal at least 3 hours before going to bed which will allow Liver to properly regenerate over the night. Sip chamomile (ragweed family) or cleavers tea.

3. Plan and Assert

Do something courageous, out of your comfort zone. Set the bold plans with the call of action. Get things done.  Create a vision board. Launch the business from scratch. Manage conflict and produce solution. Animate your soul with pioneering spirit of sprouting life around you. Pulsating Nature steers an awesome power.


Suzana Jelovecki, MS, Licensed Acupuncturist, is the owner of Roots and Branches Acupuncture and Nature Bound Woman
The information in this article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for in-person consultation with and advice from a health care professional. The dietary, nutritional, lifestyle and other information on this website are not intended to be and do not constitute health care or medical advice.