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5 tips for managing holiday season over indulgence with Chinese medicine

family gathering for a meal

Chinese medicine wisdom insists on being very gentle and mindful with one's digestive system, for nutrition is the source of whole post-natal strength. The body draws Qi from the food we ingest and the air we breathe, and distributes it through the whole body.

Eating balanced meals, on a regular schedule, favoring seasonal foods, while maintaining a mindful and calm attitude is the basis of health. Imbalances in the quantity of food, quality of food or emotional context can all lead to imbalances.

Eat a hearty breakfast and a light dinner

Chinese medicine circadian clock

Our vital energy, or Qi, moves through the body in cycles, so different organs are more energized and strong at different points of the day.

Digestion depends on our stomach and spleen functions, which is at its peak n the morning between 7am and 11am.

One should avoid eating too much outside of this window. Indulging in late-night snacks is particularly stressful on your digestive system, leading to extra metabolic waste, bloating, and ultimately possible weight gain.

Avoid cold and raw foods

According to Chinese medicine as well as Ayurveda, the body extracts nutrients by heating food up with “digestive fire.” Cooked food does not need as much work to be warmed up and broken down into nutrients, which is why it is easier to digest. On the other hand, cold and raw foods are taxing on the digestive organs.

Cold foods include foods that are served cold, but also foods whose nature is considered cold, such as dairy ! Dairy is commonly said to create dampness in the body, which manifests as mucus, phlegm, a sensation of heaviness and weight gain.

Tonify your digestion

tangerine peel tea

Orange or tangerine peel:

Orange peel is not only a good source of vitamin C, it also "drains dampness".

It is ideal for anyone suffering from vomiting or loose stools, bloating or gas, tiredness after eating etc....

This aromatic and versatile ingredient can be added to coffee, soups, porridges and meat dishes, or you can make a very simple herbal tea with it!

Manage excesses : hawthorne berry tea

hawthorne berry tea

Hawthorne berries are packed in vitamin C and have a sweet and slightly tart flavor.

They bolster the spleen, promote blood flow and even help with weight loss.

Research suggests that hawthorn berry extract can lower cholesterol, widen blood vessels and strengthen cardiovascular activity.

To make the herbal tea, simmer a tablespoon of dried hawthorn berries in two cups of water for 15 minutes.

Chinese Medicine herbal formulas

In case all of the lifestyle solutions listed above are not cutting it for you, and if you are suffering from chronic indigestion, know that Chinese medicine and acupuncture has solutions for you.

Acupuncture has been proved to be more efficient than increasing PPI (an acid reflux medication) for people with stubborn GERD.

We also offer many herbal formulas to address digestive weakness, acid reflux, diarrhea or chronic constipation. For discomfort caused by over-eating, the main formulas are

  • Bao He Wan

  • Kang Ning Wan

Do not self medicate with Chinese herbs.

Your acupuncturist & herbalist will customize a formula that is right just for you, so talk to your acupuncturist !


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