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Headaches, Irritability, Rashes, Worse PMS symptoms... Spring is here!

Have you recently developed symptoms that feel like they came out of nowhere? And when I say recently, I do mean within the last 2-3 weeks.



For me, three weeks ago I started to have a random twitch on my face. It was in one focused spot (by my nose) and would go off at random times during the day. SO ANNOYING! No matter what I tried to get it to calm down (Hemp Soothe Salve, gua sha, face massage), nothing worked. Once I made an important connection to the timing of this extremely random face twich, I was able to figure out how to get it to stop.

 

At the same time I was figuring out my face, I received texts from various clients telling me about their random symptoms that happened at the same time as my face twitch.


According to Chinese medicine, spring is associated with the wood element. The wood element correlates with the liver and gallbladder organs. The emotion associated with wood is anger. The color associated with the wood element is green.



My face twitch is what we call in Chinese medicine, "internal liver wind". It is called "wind" because of when the wind blows the trees, it causes a shaking of the limbs. When it dawned on me that this was a liver pathology, I realized that it is currently the spring transition in Florida. I started taking herbs to help support my liver. By the next day the twitching stopped.


Why Does My Body Go Crazy In The Springtime?

Spring is a season with powerful transformative energy. It's a time of birth and growth. It takes a ton of energy for a seedling to sprout and peek its little leaves above the ground. It takes a ton of energy for the dormant flowers to burst open and release their pollen to unsuspecting humans with allergies. Think of the surge of energy and pain that happens when a mother gives birth to a child.


It's also a time of movement. The wood element loves growth and upward movement. The liver loves circulation. The moment movement stops, then "blockages" form that cause pressure from the back end to build.


With that powerful energy, comes some sudden symptoms that might seem random if you are not aware of their correlation with this time of year.


Headaches, especially at the temple or the top of the head, might suddenly come on or get worse for those who already experience them. Anger and frustration may get worse for those who may have a compromised liver. PMS symptoms might spike and extubate (in Chinese medicine the liver also plays a role in menstruation and PMS symptoms).


How Can I Support My Liver During This Time?



Here is a list of some herbal teas that are well known for their benefits for the liver/wood element:


Dandelion root: roasted dandelion root has a bitter taste, similar to coffee. Some people love to use it as an alternative to coffee. It has anti-inflammatory properties, diuretic properties, helps with bile production, helps prevent stones in the gallbladder and kidneys, and so much more! It can support the skin, digestion, and the blood.


Burdock root: burdock is known for blood cleansing due to it's antimicrobial activity. It's great for people who are dealing with skin problems like eczema/psoriasis and acne (especially the kind that is red and inflammed). It helps cool a sore throat, and promote hair growth.


Bergamot (bitter orange): Citrus is good for liver health. Bergamot is one of the best for the liver because of it's green rind and sour flavor. It has antimicrobial properties. It may be helpful for uplifting moods, regulating digestion, balancing blood sugar levels, and relieving muscle cramps. It supports the digestion, skin, and circulation. The essential oil of bergamot is also great to use to help uplift mood, and you can apply it on acupressure points for a more potent effect (see below for more information on this).


An example from my life, before I was familar with Chiese medicine, I would find myself craving oranges and citrus every spring! I had no idea why, my practitioner didn't know why either other than maybe I needed vitamin C. Now I know that when I am craving citrus, especially in the spring, my body is trying to tell me that I need to tend to my liver. Bergamot essential oil smells like heaven to me!


Acupressure points to help with liver symptoms:


Liver 3: this is one of my favorites because it's easy to access and massage for most people. You can press in on it and see if it feels tender. If it is tender with very little pressure, you will need to be gentle and massage it until the tenderness is gone. You can also apply bergamot essential oil to this point to help the tenderness go away faster. This point may help reduce headaches, PMS symptoms, irritability, vertigo symptoms, and rib pain.



Gallbladder 14: this point is right above the center of the eyebrow and is helpful for headaches (including sinus headaches), eye problems, and can help bring clarity to thinking.



Liver 14: This one can be very tender, but it produces great results when massaged, especially with bergamot or rose essential oil. This point can help promote circulation, helpful for mastitis, and also may help uplift a burdened mind that cannot find a sense of hope in the future.




Exercise Is Crucial To Supporting Liver Health



The liver, according to Chinese medicine, loves movement. The movement of the wood element is the same as the growth of a tree or plant. They shoot upward, and have branches that grow outward. When there is a lack of movement in nature, then it makes for the perfect breeding grounds for invasive plants and animal species. The current in water prevents invasive species from taking over. The same applies to your body. Movement in the blood vessels can help prevent plaque from sticking onto the blood vessels, prevent stone formation, and also help boost our moods. If you want help with relief from symptoms that suddenly come on in the spring, try to take a brisk walk for 30 minutes daily and see how much better you feel. Even a simple stretch session (click here to follow one on YouTube) can boost circulation and how you feel in your body.


In Conclusion:


If you find yourself with sudden symptoms this time of year, take a look at your liver! Buy yourself some dandelion or bergamot teas and add some conscious movement to your lifestyle. Massage therapy is also a great way to boost circulation, and acupressure points can be used to help appease your liver!


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