Chinese medicine seasons: Winter

It’s easy to stress how important good health is for beautiful skin, but without thinking about your wellbeing in relation to the world around you you’re only going to get halfway there. Different seasons put different stresses on your body, and we root our reactions to those in the teachings of Chinese medicine. This ancient wisdom sees health holistically; we are part of the natural landscape, and shouldn’t try to live in conflict with it. Following the teachings of the Chinese medicine calendar can be a genuinely useful way of connecting with our bodies and existing in a more harmonious way.
We’re now firmly in the grip of winter, with gales rattling our windows and smatterings of frost covering the pavements. In traditional Chinese medicine, this Yin season is associated with water and defined as a period of introspection and rest, and is predominantly associated with the kidneys. The kidneys are also known as the source of your body’s Chi, making this the most important time of year for rebalancing your energy. Winter naturally drains us, as we fight against colds and live outside of the daylight cycle. This encourages us to focus on nurturing and restoring our wellbeing, building up our Chi to prepare us for the cold days ahead. 
Nourishment and meditation are the two cornerstones of a holistic approach to winter wellbeing. Ensuring you’re adequately supporting your body through hearty vitamin-rich foods, and your mind by slowing down and reflecting inward, will boost your radiance from the inside out and reduce breakouts. Add kidney beans, homemade broths, root vegetables and plenty of dark leafy greens to your diet. These nutritious calorie sources will bolster your energy reserves without causing glycaemic spikes, keeping your body’s Chi on an even keel. Eat spinach for iron, which carries oxygen to the blood, and rocket or romaine for vitamins A, C and K, helping to improve the skin’s elasticity.  
Underpin your diet by caring for your mind in just the same way. Take a moment at the start of each day to connect with yourself, sitting cross legged and upright on your bed, or on a rug on the floor. Focus on the feeling of your breathing, rather than trying to slow it down. When you’re ready, slowly open your eyes, uncross your legs and stretch out your body. You’ll now be ready to begin your day feeling settled and calm. 
If you’d like more guidance on your path towards a natural way of improving your wellbeing, please feel free to contact our founder, Marlene. Each of her holistic beauty treatments is supported by bespoke lifestyle advice, gathered from lessons with world-class Chinese medicine practitioners and her own extensive expertise.