Don’t Flake On Your Health This Winter

The Season of Yin:
Winters Silence, Stillness, and Solitude


Sshhhhh. Ever wish the world would just stop? That people would stop talking? That you could sleep deeply, restfully? This is your yin talking and winter time is what’s called “ultimate yin” in Chinese medicine. It’s doesn’t get more “yinny” than this time of year my friends.

Yin is your calmness, your rest, your deepest and your silence, all which is reflected in winters cold temps, short dark days, quite skies absent of birds, bare trees absent of color, dormancy, stillness, and pausation. Where summer is upmost yang, we are now in the season of upmost yin.

Fun Flake Fact: pexels-photo-279366.jpeg
What makes a snow day so quiet? According to the University of Kentucky, snow absorbs acoustics just like fibers and foams used in HVACs and sound equipment etc. A couple of inches of snow can absorb sound up to 60%. Flakes are porous and have many edges and angles creating space between them to absorb. Lots of fluff for the buff…if you will.

In the Chinese Medical the element chart and you’ll find winter is seated in the water element. (yin is fluid and water after-all as yang is heat and dryness).

Water brings qualities of:
Inner strength



Here we tap into our deepest reserves. The “strength we didn’t know we had” until it’s called upon. It’s those times when we feel we have what we need to get through a crisis, and it provides our sense of knowing. It’s also where creativity can thrive in our wandering daydreams. We daydream free from the boundaries of reality and ideas can spring forth, meandering quietly without limits in your own world. And, just as water is the the fertile place to conceive ideas, it also plays a strong hand in fertility issues on the physical front.

Fear is the emotion associated with the Water Element. We tend to fear fear itself however it’s healthy and serves us in its balanced state. It keeps us alert and prompts life saving action or smart decisions.  However, if imbalanced it becomes paralyzing (or makes us “frozen” reflecting the characteristic of yins cold nature) or obstructive. Here we might see:


Imbalanced water types might struggle with:
~Loneliness, isolation
~They may be blunt or tactless.
~Memory may fail them.
~In children there may be developmental growth issues.
~Sleep can be poor.
In the physical realm we might see:
~Premature greying
~Problematic teeth
~Fragile bones
~Kidney or bladder issues
~Weak or painful knees
~Chronically weak or achy lower back which is common and I see that often in practice.
~They tend to crave salt!

What can help you:
I find herbal medicine takes the award for treating many of these conditions (OF COURSE acupuncture helps too 😉 ). Hearty cooked foods such as steamed, baked or slow roasted is best. Knowing when to ask for help and having intentional conversations that nourish the deeper aspects of your creativity and intellect supports this element. Reading a good book can serve that purpose as well. Or painting, listening to music, writing etc. And of course…spending time in the very important….rest stage…..daydreaming….sssshhhhhh….

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