The meaning of Harvest in Chinese Medicine
Fall harvest is when the last of the crops from summer are sewn and the beginning of our season for squash and other colorful gourds begin to flourish. The bright orange and yellow colors of these beauties is what relates to the Stomach and Spleen. This stomach and spleen relationship to the earth element gives us the foundation for fluids, blood, and yin, all very important qualities that we must build in reserve for the harsh winter months.
The stomach and spleen are the foundation to the lungs, which are at their peak and rule throughout the fall. The lungs are the most susceptible to our cold external environment as fall progresses and the winter takes hold. Our lungs, when they are weak, tend to catch the most colds and flus over the winter and have a difficult time recuperating. A weakness in the lungs leaves us vulnerable to illness and fatigue in the winter.
So in order to strengthen the lungs we want to fortify the stomach and the spleen with as much vibrant squash that we can get our hands on while the harvest is still strong!!! We also use fall fruits like apples and pears, which add moisture to the lungs, to help us strengthen our bodies and get ready for the challenges of winter.
Let's talk teas:
Our Prevention tea is made with this in mind. Our blend uses berries and barks that help strengthen the stomach and spleen as well as fortify the lungs while moistening and nourishing the fluids.
When we have hit a rough patch, we turn to our Under the Weather tea, which uses a spicy heat (spicy is the taste affiliated with the lungs: more on that later) to open the pores (which is controlled by the lungs) and to flush the sinuses (the upper portal of the lungs). We do this to help release the pathogens from the body so that we may recover faster and with more vigor.