• The Acupuncture Clinic of Tom Ingegno L.Ac 907 Lakewood Ave Baltimore, MD 21224
  • P: (443) 869-6584
    • 06 FEB 13
    • 0

    Nourishing the kidneys through winter

    Snow, ice, rain, it doesn’t matter what the global climate change brings, we are deep into the coldest time of the year here in Baltimore. From a TCM point of view, winter is the most yin time of the year, and the season of water in whatever form nature sees fit to bring it to us. This is a time to be introspective, and embrace all yin aspects of receptivity, yielding and the feminine side of our personality. Physically, we may be feeling a little softer and rounder due to putting on a few extra pounds to store qi energy through these cold months. Although we may be surrounded by water in our environment at this time of the year, we need to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of pure filtered water.

    The kidneys and urinary bladder belong to the water element, which makes them our most vulnerable organs in the winter months and, as well as urine production, they are responsible for the function of our adrenal glands, reproductive system, skeletal system, teeth and hearing. On the emotional side, the water element allows us to feel safe and secure, calm and relatively stress free. Any imbalance may cause fear, phobias, anxiety and insecurity. More than at any other time of the year, the kitchen becomes important not so much for its delicious aromas, but as a place for pleasant sounds of cooking to keep us relaxed. Foods that will nourish and strengthen us now are both salty and bitter, as these flavors will help warm us to our very core. If there is an imbalance in our kidneys and bladder it may be caused by:

    kidney yin deficiency

    Symptoms are dizziness, ringing in the ears, fast pulse, red tongue, dry mouth, nocturnal emissions. Emotionally you may be nervous and jittery. To heal this deficiency do the following:

    • eat seaweeds, black sesame seeds, barley, tofu, wheat germ; small amounts of crab, clams, eggs and pork
    • avoid overeating and warming foods, such as coffee, alcohol, tobacco, lamb, cinnamon, ginger and hot spices

    kidney yang deficiency

    Symptoms are a pale complexion, weak knees and lower back, feeling cold, lack of sexual desire, lethargy, frequent urination and an enlarged pale tongue. To increase yang choose:

    • walnuts, onions, garlic, leeks, quinoa, chicken and lamb
    • warming spices, such as ginger, cinnamon and black pepper

    damp heat in urinary bladder

    Symptoms of bladder infections are painful urination, burning sensations, fever and cloudy urine. Foods that are bitter and cooling are needed to reduce damp heat. Try light foods and soups made from any of the following ingredients:

    • aduki beans, lima beans, celery, asparagus, mushrooms, potatoes with skins
    • drink diluted unsweetened cranberry juice and dandelion tea

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