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Weary during the wood phase

IN spring, many people feel tired and sleepy all day. They experience a lack of ambition and motivation, are sensitive to weather changes and are overall very moody. All these symptoms indicate spring fatigue.

Spring fatigue does not belong to the category of chronic and severe sicknesses as it usually only lasts for a few weeks. Chinese philosophy explains its appearance with the five-element theory which is related to the seasons of the year.

The year is divided into five phases and each phase belongs to one element. For example, spring belongs to wood, high summer to fire, late summer to earth, fall to metal and winter to water. In each phase, the Chinese comply with specific habits and rules concerning their lifestyle, sleeping and eating.

Springtime is characterized by the wood element and it symbolizes new life and the process of growing. After a long winter of rest, the body needs a lot of energy and sufficient time to wake up and reactivate itself.

Additionally, our energy levels grow due to more physical activity, consumption of new fresh food items, etc. Patients who feel tired in spring often suffer from an imbalance in the liver or gall bladder. These two organs need to be re-balanced and activated again.

If the tiredness lasts longer than a couple of weeks, people possibly suffer either from a qi (energy flow) deficiency in spleen, kidney or lung or a yang (hot) deficiency in kidney, spleen or heart. Without appropriate medical treatment, these kinds of fatigue can become chronic.

Herbal medicine for the liver and gall bladder is very helpful to overcome temporarily tiredness in spring. The use of spicy herbs in dishes also supports the blood flow and makes the body feel more energetic.

(Doris Rathgeber is founder of Body & Soul Medical Clinics.)



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