For every element there is a season, and there are five elements in Chinese Medicine. So where does the fifth season fit in?

The Fifth Season

“The fifth season?”

Yes, there’s a fifth season. In Chinese Medicine there are 5 “phases” or elements and each element creates a category of things that correlate with it – tastes, diseases, smells, emotions and seasons.

But there is some misunderstanding about what the fifth season actually is and to clear up that understanding we have to look back to the classics.

For every element there is a season, and there are five elements in Chinese Medicine. So where does the fifth season fit in?

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Breastfeeding is a delicate subject surrounded by strong opinions. But really, the only one that matters is yours.

When to stop breastfeeding

Ladies, we are born with boobs. And those boobs have a purpose – breastfeeding.

That purpose is not (as was once told to me by my favorite five-year old) “to look like we have boobs.” No. It’s to feed babies, for as long as we are willing and able.

Breastfeeding is great for both moms and kids. For moms, 2 years of breastfeeding throughout her life is linked to significant decreases in rates of breast cancer. The CDC also reports that breastfeeding reduces the rates of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and ovarian cancer in women.

More often we talk about the benefits to our babies. Breastfeeding children significantly reduces the rates of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (S

IDS), lowers the rates of colds, flus and ear infections, lowers the risk of asthma, obesity and Type 2 diabetes.

Breast milk is an amazing substance.

So when is it safe to stop breastfeeding? What is the best cut off for mom and baby? The answer is more complicated than you may think.

Breastfeeding is a delicate subject surrounded by strong opinions. But really, the only one that matters is yours.

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Journaling has been one of my favorite self-exploration tools to recommend for patients and Katie's book takes it to a whole new level

Book Review: Let It Out by Katie Dalebout

I have always been a huge fan of journaling. Rather, I’ve been a huge fan of collecting pretty journals that sit, mostly empty, on my shelf because they’re meant for a particular subject. It takes a long time to fill up a “business journal” and a “gratitude journal” and a “clinic journal” plus every other type of journal you could conceive of. So when I heard Katie Dalebout’s podcast on Being Boss I was naturally intrigued.

I think what convinced me to buy the book was when she talked about her journal collection. At one point, Katie had the same problem I had. Tons of journals with tons of empty pages. But because of how Katie breaks down her journaling “tools”, empty pages become less of a problem. Partially because it stops mattering what you put in what journal. In fact, for some tools she recommends nothing fancy at all and uses a legal pad. Some tools aren’t even in journals at all, but rather in a phone or a jar (no, really.)

By the end of the podcast episode I knew what I wanted for my birthday – I wanted to get Let it Out and start using up my journals. But in the meantime, I needed to find out who Katie Dalebout was and what she was all about.

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Why you need to stop #hustling

Type A people have it rough.

It’s not that the world is hard on Type A people. The world at large loves Type A people. They are doers and movers and shakers. Type A people are hard on themselves (which is probably why they’re more susceptible to heart disease and stroke.)

Type A people just keep going, digging deep into yang energy and using its rocket fuel to start businesses, create art and move forward in everything.

Type A people don’t know how to stop.

Imagine being in the North Woods of Minnesota. Sunlight warms the wooden porch floor. The sounds of water lapping on the shore and children playing follow the breeze through the open windows. It’s 80, and beautiful and you’re on your laptop because you won’t. stop. working. 

That’s Type A.

Because the Type A definition of relaxation is speed boats out on the lake, wakeboarding, water skiing and high energy water sports. It’s wiring together fireworks and cooking for 100 people.

Type A people are all about the hustle.

I’m here to tell you that America is Type A. And we need to turn it down a notch.

The 24/7 hustle is about doing the work, but doing the work 24/7 is making us sicker, less productive and less efficient. Read more about how adding a bit of yin to your life will make doing the work easier and more effective.

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Women’s Water: A Yin Tonic

Yin deficiency signs are pretty clear:

  • flushing face
  • night sweats
  • hot flashes
  • dry throat
  • insomnia
  • racing thoughts when you try to go to bed at night
  • sore back
  • constipation
  • ringing ears/tinnitus
  • dizziness

You know what this sounds like? Menopause. Or for some women, menstruation. Or others just…life.

You see, women are mostly yin. We are yin to the masculine yang. So yin deficiency tends to be a bit more obvious in us. Maybe that’s why in my practice this recipe is the one I tend to recommend the most.

So why is it that this simple tonic can be so helpful for women? Read on.

The easiest Traditional Chinese Medicine recipe ever - a yin tonifying water for women

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