Late summer is the period of transition from the heat of summer to the coolness of fall, that brings with it sudden changes in temperature and climactic conditions. Late summer is a time when dampness and heat prevail first, then give way to fluctuations that bring wind and dryness with the cooling off from high temperatures.
We have been entering the fifth season in New York City since early August this year, though late summer generally runs from late August to late September or early October (as in “Indian summer”).
At this time, our bodies are challenged more than the usual to adapt to these changes. All summer long we have already been in been in and out of (natural) heat and (unnatural) air-conditioning, and this continues into the late summer season.
Asking the body to keep regulating itself, back-and-forth, can tire us out, and leave us susceptible. An analogy might be the walled cities of yore: the gates were guarded, but if a gate was accidentally left open, invaders could easily enter and cause mayhem.
Chinese medicine has a correlate to the western immune system, but for simplicity’s sake, let’s say this time of year often brings sudden onset-type illnesses which resolve quickly with the appropriate intervention.
Our best bet to keep the gate of our immune systen well-guarded during this season is to double-down on our health practices, including quality nutrition (easy to do when fresh vegetables are plentiful in the markets), extra vitamin C & D, and adequate rest. Also, carrying an extra layer- shirt/sweater/scarf- when you leave the house will help you adjust to the sudden climactic changes.
If you have questions and concerns about acupuncture treatment, we offer a free 20-minute phone session: click here for contact information to call or e-mail us. We practice at The Highlands Ranch Medical Pavilion in Littleton, Colorado.
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