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Seasons change, and your body and mental outlook change with them.
And because human beings are a part of nature, our bodies react to the season in predictable ways.
Oriental medicine combines knowledge of seasonal characteristics with your unique health situation to balance your energy (chi) to help you adapt and thrive during this season of luxurious growth.
Here are some things to consider for staying healthy as you enjoy summertime.
The Fire Element Every season is associated with one of the Five Elements, and for summer, the element is 'Fire.
' Summer weather is typically hot, and relatively damp.
For example, the muggy feeling you experience during summer comes from heat causing dampness to condense and rise as it gets hotter.
As on the outside, so on your inside: in summertime, there is a tendency for dampness to accumulate within your body.
Summer Health Problems During summer, some typical heat-related problems are: rashes, headaches and feelings of irritation.
For example: Blood pressure may rise from too much heat trapped in the body; damp-induced blister rashes, or boils can erupt on the skin; and if you have eczema, you may experience more occurrences of it in the summer.
Summer Health Tips It's important to drink enough water and eat the right foods to ensure you're meeting your body's summertime needs.
  • Drink more water.
    Because it's hot and you perspire a lot during the summer, the average amount of water you should drink in a 24-hour period is 48 ounces -- this includes all fluids, such as, juice, soda, and other beverages.
    (Note: 48 ounces is the equivalent of 6 eight ounce glasses.
    ) When you are sweating more than usual -- as on some days in the summer -- drinking more is advisable.
    It's important to pay attention to how you feel, and drink more when you're thirsty.
  • Monitor your intake of salt.
    An imbalance of salt in your body -- too much, or too little -- can readily occur when temperatures are hot.
    You will know you're getting too much salt if you find that rings you wear get tighter, and socks or shoes that fit you comfortably during cooler weather, leave lines or wrinkles on your feet or ankles because of too much fluid in those areas.
  • Eat cooling foods.
    Cucumbers, mung beans, and watermelon are particularly good foods to eat in the summer.
    They help to keep your body cool, and because of their diuretic properties, they also help to offset excess salt intake.
Stay Healthy So enjoy your summer and help ensure your health by being conscious of a few simple things you can do for yourself and your family:
  • Drink enough water.
  • Monitor your salt intake.
  • Eat cooling foods.
Get Help If You Need It If you experience any heat-related symptoms that don't clear up quickly, call a qualified Oriental medicine practitioner for an appointment to get a prescribed formula of medical herbs to help alleviate your symptoms and address the problem -- before it becomes more advanced.

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