Listen to the cold wind blow. The ruddy leaves still clinging to the barren boughs turn the oaks into giant rattles.
Their energy has descended down deep into their roots where they drink from the blue black waters of underground rivers.
So too our energies have descended downward and inwards, closer to our bones, closer to our hearts.
Winter is the time of the kidneys and bladder, two organs that govern the flow of water in the body. Water that is medicine. Water that is life.
And yet the kidneys are referred to as the Palace of Water and Fire because both the yin and the yang energies of the body arise from the kidneys. Those bean shaped organs that wear the adrenal glands on top like warm hats of energy.
During the Winter it’s important to nourish the kidneys with salty and bitter foods and herbs that help tonify their function.
Black beans, kidney beans, millet, amaranth, quinoa, and bone broth soups with some Kombu, Wakame, Dulse, Kelp, or other seaweeds are all excellent.
If the kidney yang is more deficient, add some warming herbs like ginger (dried), cinnamon, cloves, or black pepper. The onion family which includes onions, leeks, scallions, chives, and garlic are all excellent kidney yang tonics.
And nuts are good, especially Walnuts for the kidney yang and grasping qi which allows us to breathe deeply more easily.
If the kidney yin is more deficient add more seaweed, Black sesame seeds, and Marshmallow root, or Solomon Seal.
A Shiatsu intake assesses the balance of kidney yin and yang in the body through tongue and pulse observations, and crafts the best treatment that helps the body achieve optimal health through the balancing of its internal energies.