Rest and Digest
Spring is just around the corner and it can be tempting at this time of year to start eating more cold raw foods to improve energy by detoxing. But think twice. Chinese medicine says these foods are cooling and more difficult to digest than cooked. While it is still cold and wintery outside it is important to continue to nurture and nourish our energy by eating warming foods like hearty soups and stews help to warm the body’s core and to keep us nourished.
Sufficient rest is always important and we need more of it at this time of year than we do in the summer months. “Lack of energy” is one of the top five complaints that doctors hear, particularly at this time of year.
As a busy person and small business owner I know only too well how hard it can be to find the time to take care of myself and rest.
No one resists drinking a glass of water when they are thirsty but for many of us we have strong judgements and conditioning around taking the rest we need when we need it. When you feel the call to rest do you drink a cup of coffee, reach for a sugary snack or look for yet another job to do? These are common evasions to rest. It is remarkable how even a 10 minute rest with legs up and eyes closed can renew our energies and allow us to be even more effective throughout the day.
In Chinese medicine this ability to rest and digest is managed through intake of easily digestible foods, appropriate exercise and adequate relaxation and rest. If any of these aspects are out of balance then a build up of undigested, un processed metabolic waste can cause gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, heat burn, acid indigestion, fatigue, strong cravings and poor sleep.
Daily routine is vital in managing energy flow and good digestion and I’d like to share one aspect of my daily routine that I have found incredibly supportive to management of energy flow and optimise digestion.
- I regularly aim to rest with my legs up for a minimum of 15 minutes to active a relaxation response in my system, usually after lunch but any time in the afternoon or evening is always beneficial!