Hot? Bothered? Hot Tempered? Is this weather affecting you?

Staying Cool and Cool Headed this Summer with Chinese Medicine Sydney Summer is well and truly here! In Chinese Medicine this is thetime of year that is considered most yang.

High yang means heat, maximum activity, and moving outward with our lives and into nature.

In TCM, every season has an element associated with it. Fire is the element of summer.
Associations with the fire element and Chinese medicine:
* The colour Red
* The emotion of Joy
* Bitter Tasting Foods
* The body organs associated are the Heart and Small Intestine

When the fire element is in balance, your heart is strong and healthy, your mind is calm and your sleep is sound. On the other hand, when the fire element is not balanced, you may either lack joy (depression) or have an excess of joy (mania). Indicators of an imbalance in the fire element include:

 Excessive perspiration, or lack of perspiration
 Rashes, hives, or hot skin eruptions
 Sleep disturbances, insomnia, and restless sleep
 Palpitations, or an irregular heartbeat
 Restless, agitated, or explosive energy
 Inappropriate laughter
 Anxiety and irrational fears and phobias
 heartburn

Because summer is the hottest season, to balance the heat, you need a diet that is cooling in nature. Fresh fruits and vegetables are great choices.

Chinese nutrition classifies food according to its energetic qualities of temperature, taste, and ability to moisten and strengthen the body.

Food with cool and cold properties can clear heat, reduce toxins, and generate body fluids.

In general, cooling foods tend towards the green end of the spectrum – lettuce, cucumbers, and watercress are some of the coolest. Few vegetables are warming. Fish and seafood are also cooling, while most meats are warming.

Eat more cooling foods, such as watermelon, strawberries, asparagus, sprouts, corn, cucumber, spinach, and mint.

Summer is a poor time to overdo spicy foods, alcohol, or caffeine because all of these foods heat you up rather than cool you down.

Tips for Summer Health

To prevent an imbalance of the fire element and remain in harmony with the environment of Summer (maximising your Summer Fun), Chinese Medicine Practitioners advise:
 Wake up earlier in the morning.
 Go to bed later in the evening.
 Rest at midday. Siesta’s!
 Drink plenty of fluids.
 Add pungent flavours to your diet.
 Refrain from anger; keep calm and even-tempered.

Seeing a Chinese Medicine Practitioner for regular treatment can help keep your body in balance throughout Summer. For more information and to make a booking with our Acupuncturists Andrea and Chloe call 02-84060679 or visit

What is it about the change of a year that makes some of us want to make a new years resolution?

Most people begin the New Year with wonderful intentions of this year reaching their goals. Well the 1 st of the 1 st is a great numerological start as one’s are our prime movers and new beginnings, but the reality is that most New Year’s resolutions generally fizzle out by the time we have reached February!

The reason this happens, is because these changes we have decided on making this year have actually been hanging around for sometime but have been ‘waiting’ for an excuse – Ah ha – the New Year!

So this year, rather than having a list as long as your arm how about starting by looking at what limitations have prevented you from making these changes in your life prior to now?

These could be – energetic, mental, emotional, spiritual or a misbelief? Once recognized, you then need to take responsibility, of the fact, that at some level, consciously or unconsciously you have created this limitation, because you are the powerful creators of your own life.

To create change you have to be aware of the fact that intentionally or unintentionally you are currently at this place in your live due to your past choices and actions.

So before you go any further grab your list of New Year resolutions and without self judgment work out what you can change to enable your new goals to be reached and fulfilled this year.

Once you work this out, you can then put changes into process and you will start working seriously towards your goals for this year.
We would love to hear from you so please keep us posted on your progress. or if you need some deeper work on achieving your goals book a session with Sheila by calling 02 8406 0679 or visiting our site

Goals, feelings and core desires. Getting there with Kinesiology


Meaning: “Of undisputed origin and not a copy; genuine”

I decided to reach deep this holiday and started re-reading one of my all time favourites by Danielle LaPorte “The Firestarter Sessions”. Touted as “A whack in the head for anyone stuck in traditional, linear, fixed ways of thinking about career and success… “ (by Forbes) – Danielle is a wonderful New Years companion if you are aiming to start the year on a high note. I frequently refer to her books – she is honest, funny and really good at getting back to basics. In a world dominated by distractions and endless “to-do lists” which often leave us feeling tired and overwhelmed and not any closer to our goals, (or anymore fulfilled) LaPorte has laid it out for us in her sequel to Firestarter called “The Desire Map”. In the first chapter she refers to a New Years Eve night spent with her husband reflecting on their goals for the year which turned out to be more about how they wanted to feel in their lives. And so these lists of feelings – “Connected. Free. Abundance. Creative…” turned the New Years Eve resolution “list” on its head. Suddenly this process had new appeal. The process was ever more engaging and the lists of wanting something outside of themselves were morphing into something far more soulful and beautiful. Danielle describes this way of goal setting and “life planning” as a more fluid and “compassionate” way of being. Instead of berating herself for not kicking goals it was far easier to see where she was out of alignment with her desires. At the end of the year when reflecting on her “desired feelings” she tended not to feel so disappointed in herself if she didn’t check off certain accomplishments on her list. Instead she could see that the things she had been doing, the experiences she had been living, the people she had been interacting with were all fulfilling and she was indeed making progress. More often than not, she realised she was feeling the way she wanted to feel. Now that’s progress!

Referring to these core desires every day helped guide her choices. “Knowing how you actually want to feel is the most potent form of clarity that you can have. Generating those feelings is the most powerfully creative thing you can do with your life.” Does that mean we need to bin the to-do’s, the bucket lists and goal planning? Not necessarily. But guaranteed those lists will change or (how you go about achieving them) when you are being driven by feelings of how you want to feel on a daily basis rather than the lists themselves. It stands to reason that if you are being driven by the core desired feeling of “freedom” a career opportunity involving longer hours and more responsibilities may not be for you – regardless of the increase in salary.

“Go for what you want – just know why you’re going after it.” And on that note may the pursuit of your dreams and goals be more satisfying than ever this year. For more clarity on your desired feelings contact Kim. Kinesiology can be very effective in using a variety of techniques, including light muscle testing to help you in your quest for clarity around your core desired feelings. Working towards bringing about the changes necessary in order to align you with your goals and desires is also a big part of the process.

Kim is a kinesiologist working on the Northern Beaches in a beautiful space, namely – Northern Beaches Integrative Practitioners. Kinesiology is a wonderful tool to help you get to your core desires, the root of how you want to feel in day to day living. Contact us on 02 8406 0679 or book online at

Northern Beaches Integrative Practitioners | Integrative Practitioners Mona Vale, Northern Beaches – Welcome!

Sleep disturbance and Insomnia? What you can do…..

Sleep disturbance and insomnia are becoming more prevalent in our society and we are seeing an increasing number of patients in clinic suffering from sleep disorders. During the sleep phase, the body is subject to significant restorative activity which nurtures the nervous system, the cardiovascular system, the digestive system and the respiratory system.

If individuals are not getting enough sleep or if they are not entering all the different phases of sleep including the different stages of REM (rapid eye movement) and NREM (non-rapid eye movement), they will not be getting the therapeutic benefits that restorative sleep brings to those body systems.

Sleep disorders may relate to one of the following conditions:

  • Sleep onset insomnia (difficulty falling asleep at night)
  • Sleep maintenance insomnia (waking during the night or continuous awakening early in the morning)
  • Non-restorative sleep (adequate quantity of sleep but poor quality of sleep)

Ongoing sleep disturbance can impact our lives in many ways:-

  • Stress, irritability and nervous tension / anxiety
  • Poor memory and impaired cognitive function
  • Low mood and depression
  • Gut dysbiosis
  • Immune dysfunction
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Headaches and migraine
  • Fatigue
  • Muscular aches and pains

Chronic sleep disorders can be caused by numerous factors so it is important to find out what is causing the sleep disturbance and treat the condition with a holistic approach.

Insomnia can present as a symptom of an underlying issue that won’t resolve until the underlying issue is addressed. In the interim though, here are some tips to help you sleep a little easier and a little more soundly:

1) Keep a regular sleep pattern – go to bed at the same time each night and wake around

the same time each morning. This can be difficult for some whose routine involves shift work or new parents but keeping a regular pattern can help with sleep issues. Napping can also cause sleep disturbance so unless you can no longer keep your eyes open, try skipping that afternoon nap.

2) Avoid screen time for at least 30-60 minutes prior to bed time. All screens including phones, laptops, iPads, television and other electronic devices are stimulating to the brain and can switch our brain over from winding down to gearing up.

3) Ensure you are getting enough protein and essential fatty acids in your diet as these nutrients promote restful sleep by regulating hormones such as serotonin and melatonin and support the nervous system.

4) Avoid stimulating food and drinks including caffeine, alcohol and sugar. These stimulants are known to wreak havoc with sleep and reduce the quality of sleep. Recreational drugs can also cause disturbance to the natural sleep pattern and reduce the quality of sleep.

5) Drink calming, sedating herbal teas in the evening such as chamomile, passionflower, lemon balm or lavender. These teas contain sedative properties that help induce sleep and improve the quality of sleep.

6) Regular exercise has been shown to reduce the occurrence of insomnia and promote restorative sleep. It is important, however, not to exercise too close to bed time as this can be stimulating to the body and impair the sleep onset stage.

7) Winding down before bed time by having a warm bath, turning down the lights and turning off electronic devices or doing some relaxation exercises or meditation can help to calm the nervous system, relax the body and induce sound sleep.

8) Ensure your bed and bedroom are set at a suitable temperature. Overheating or being too cool during the night will cause disruption to sleep. Try to find and maintain a comfortable temperature to facilitate restful sleep.

If you are experiencing sleep disturbance and would like to resolve the problem, consider natural medicine which takes a holistic approach to treatment and may include herbal medicine formulas, nutritional medicine and/or supplementation and dietary recommendations, lifestyle modifications and other natural therapies. Belle is a Naturopath at Northern Beaches Integrative Practitioners and can help you to sleep soundly again.

To book a consultation please phone 8406 0679 or book online at

Photo: MMPR on Unsplash