The Energy of Autumn – Traditional Chinese Medicine

Photo by Alexander Schimmeck on Unsplash

The Autumnal Equinox occurred on September 23rd this year. With the passing of the equinox, we begin to sense the dance of the subtle energies transforming summer into autumn. The nights are cooler, the days are shorter. The beautiful greenery of summer fades and the warm reds, oranges, and browns of fall emerge.

Fall is the time of the metal element and Lung and Large Intestine are the associated organ meridians.

  • The climate is dry
  • The emotion is grief and sadness
  • It is harvest time
  • The color is white
  • The flavor is pungent
  • The sense organ – nose
  • Tissues- skin

The lung energy is associated with “letting go”. This is a perfect time of year to clean house both physically and emotionally and let go of that which no longer serves us. The lungs are very susceptible to wind and cold, so it is important to be prepared for the drops in temperature which occur. Carrying a scarf is a great way to stay warm in unsettled weather. Many people get colds, sore throats, and virus this time of year.

To strengthen your immune system for Fall, remember to:

  • Dress for the weather
  • If you get a cold, avoid dairy products which create phlegm
  • Get plenty of sleep – 7-8 hours a night if possible
  • Do deep breathing exercises to strengthen the lungs and walk in nature.
  • Eat soups, stews and warming food, such as sweet potato, garlic, onions, cabbage, pears, ginger, walnuts, radish, and cinnamon to name a few.
  • Spend time in introspection. Just as nature is pulling back its energy and sending it into the earth, so should we spend time looking inward.

Living in harmony with nature will boost our immune system.