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Summer = The Season Of Fiery Abundance

Balance out your energy, find your joy, and stay COOL during the summer season!


Step outside and you already know, summer is HERE. This means longer, hazy hot days underneath the sun’s relentless, scorching rays. No surprise, this season is represented by the element of fire – with high energy, and yang-like movements to stimulate creative growth and happiness. In Chinese medicine, the fire element is associated with the organs of the heart, small intestine, and the pericardium. These are the organs of passion, warmth, connection – fostering an intense and burning desire within us to LIVE our best lives. Of course, we must learn to find balance surrounding our own fire energy (too much fire can make one overly excited and create an excess of yang energy while too little fire can leave an individual somber and restless). Overtime, our energetic imbalances are reflected in our physical bodies. Inflammation issues, blockages in the digestive tract, irregularities with body temperature – these are just some of the symptoms of energetic imbalances. Read on for important tips on how to stay cool and regulated within your body this season!

The Supreme Ruler of Your Inner Fire

The HEART – our deepest internal compass for emotional and spiritual guidance, our own commander of truth and passion, and the life source which not only keeps us alive but reminds us that we ARE alive. It is the heart, along with the paired organ of the small intestine which represent the fire element.

“Energetically the heart is referred to as the emperor of our beings. It regulates the mind, is responsible for the flow of blood, and it stores the “Shen” or spirit, which is responsible for feeling content and connected,” described Acushen Clinic's Founder, Dr. Sarah Anzola.

Working in tandem with the heart, the small intestine deciphers between foods that must be processed and converted into energy and in turn, foods that we need to eliminate. This is also reflected in our emotional beings, as this organ promotes healthy and meaningful relationships while reminding us of when it is time to let go of the toxic ones. Fostering an energetic balance with these organs in mind will help to facilitate healthier relationships, as well as overall joy.

So, what happens when the heart and small intestine are out of balance?

“One may experience symptoms such as anxiety, sleep troubles, excessive sweating, a flushed face, depression, mania, or speech problems,” explained Anzola.

Furthermore, when we expend too much or too little yang energy or “chi” we can throw our internal body temperatures out of whack. We might feel feverish, or even chilled (yes chilled – even in summer!), and our body fluids and overall circulation will also crave regulation.

Lucky for us, we have ways to counter these imbalances with acupuncture and herbal medicine to restore a healthy fire within us.

“Acupuncture improves blood circulation throughout the body and within the heart specifically. Acupuncture is commonly used for angina pectoris, palpitations and other disorders of heart rate and rhythm, high blood pressure, heart murmurs and more. Another way in which acupuncture benefits heart health is through the mechanism of homeostasis—acupuncture helps to bring the body back into a state of balance and health.”

Naturally, Dr. A has us covered!

Cooling Foods for the Hottest of Days

Dr. Anzola reminds us that the best way to improve our organ health is through diet and lifestyle.

“Summer heat can zap body fluids and harm yin (thicker fluids in our bodies). I recommend eating cooling and yin tonifying foods such as summer fruits and veggies to clear heat from the body and replenish fluids. Lighter foods in the summer are important to avoid indigestion (per the heart’s relationship to the small intestine).”


Apple, lemon, kiwi, watermelon, orange, pear, pineapple, tangerine, cucumber, Belgian endive hearts, spinach, tomato, salads, yogurt, wheat, barley, fish, rabbit, mint, dill, cilantro, juice, green tea.

Red foods have been shown to help strengthen the heart. These foods include hawthorn berries, strawberries, cherries, raspberries, tomatoes, watermelon, peppers, and goji berries.


Hot and dry foods such as coffee, excessively spicy foods, icy cold foods, and drinks.

(Note: We won’t judge if you need your morning coffee…but maybe reduce your intake. I should add, this is a note for me as much as it is for you!)


Make sure you are getting plenty of water to prevent dehydration in the body (roughly 8-10 cups throughout the day). Bored of plain H20? Try some cucumber or coconut water as cooling alternatives. Drink liquids at room temperature so your body does not have to work too hard to regulate it’s internal temperature (this interferes with digestion).

Live Your Best Hot Girl (And Hot Boy) Summer:

Lifestyle factors play a large role in overall cardiovascular health. Being physically active every day is an important practice to strengthen and improve the heart health.

“Research has shown that at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity can help lower blood pressure, cholesterol and keep your weight at a healthy level,” emphasized Anzola.

Incorporating mindfulness, yoga, and meditative practices into your routine will help to balance you from the inside out and decrease the amount of stress placed on the heart.

Protect Your Heart with Calming Yoga Poses and Cooling Pranayama

Activate Your Sitali “Cooling” Breath

Sit comfortably and stick your tongue all the way out (do not be afraid to look silly!) and roll the outer edges together so it looks like a hot dog bun. Inhale for a count of three in through the tube of your tongue. Hold the breath for one count before drawing your tongue back into your mouth. Close your lips and exhale through your nose as smoothly as possible, counting to three. Complete several rounds of this and notice the cooling/calming impact on your body!

Urdhva Hastasana

Full body standing stretch with option to lift your heart and gaze as you channel your deepest, fullest breaths


A low lunge with the heart lifted to find inner peace

Baddha Konasana

Bound angle pose (butterfly) to release tension in the lower body and turn your thoughts inward


Tree pose to cool your mind and strengthen and balance your entire body

Prasarita Padottanasana

Wide-legged forward bend to surrender the upper body and allow any tension/stress to be released


Melting heart or extended puppy pose to surrender your heart to the earth and use breath to create ease in the upper body while eliciting overall calming sensations throughout the body

NOTE: Join us for a follow-up blog with demonstrations of cooling breath and movements. Also, check out our gentle flows in the Acushen Clinic Garden every Wednesday evening where we balance the fire of yang with cooling yin vibes and the third-eye needle to promote rest and mental clarity.




This month’s Acu-point: SI 6

Location: On the dorsal ulnar aspect of the forearm, in the depression on the radial side of the styloid process of the ulna (to simplify in non sciencey terms: this is the outer wrist where it joins the hand, which plays an important role of strength and flexibility of the wrist and forearm)

Classification: Xi-Cleft point of the Small Intestine Meridian

Indications: Blurring of the vision, Aching of the shoulders, back, elbow, arm, acute lumbar pain

Functions: Activates the meridian, benefits the eyes, benefits the shoulder and arm, alleviates pain

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