There may be various reasons why we can have a hard time managing weight. We can blame our hormones, our genetics, our diet, lifestyle and more, maintaining a healthy weight for many of us is a daily task. It’s important to say straight up, our healthy weight and our ‘ideal’ weight may be worlds apart. We here at Your Tea are here to steer you towards your best. Which is why we’re keen to spill the beans on what might be standing between you and your healthy weight, those last few pesky kilos that you just can’t quite shake.
Introducing the Chinese Medicine term ‘phlegm.’
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) views the issue of weight gain a little differently from how we do in the west – although this is rapidly changing and becoming more aligned to the TCM theories, that is, at the root level weight comes back to the ‘spleen’, aka the gut. Quite simply, if you can’t transport your food and drink properly it won’t be absorbed, this can cause a host of issues including weak digestion, nutrient deficiencies as well as stagnation in the body.
With this in mind, it can mean you have the best diet on the planet but your body still isn’t getting what it deserves, simply because you cannot assimilate (digest) well. This can make issues like weight gain appear, because we need to overeat to consume adequate nutrients to meet our body’s needs, we can feel constantly hungry and all the while the digestive system continues to weaken. This begins the vicious cycle; if we can’t eat to nourish ourselves our hormones may become imbalanced since the building blocks aren’t available to make them. As the spleen continues to weaken, the body begins to produce ‘phlegm’ that accumulates in the body making it sluggish and heavy.
Looking at this from a western viewpoint, put simply our metabolism begins to take a backseat.
Your body likes to be in a consistent state of flow.
Take a river for example. If there isn’t adequate water flow, a boat cannot easily sail with the stream and may become stuck. Over time, if the water continues to stagnate, it will begin to smell, turn green and all of the flora and fauna around will be affected too. Your digestive system is much like this. If over time this continues to happen, not only will the movement of food through the digestive system be compromised, but the organs of the body may also be affected.
This accumulation of phlegm doesn’t stop with the symptom of weight gain but will show up as other symptoms including feeling sluggish, tired, heavy, unhappy bowels, as well as emotional upset. There’s nothing to lose by addressing phlegm (aside form a few pesky kilograms).
The entire idea of managing healthy weight can seem overwhelming, but with a few ‘hacks’ we’re quietly confident you can make big changes. We’ve a few tricks up our sleeve to help take you towards your lighter and brighter self.
Keep your drinks warm
We don’t just say this because we adore tea. We say this because TCM theory is based around this very principle. Cold congeals; heat moves.
Switching from cold drinks to warm and comforting brews may make the world of difference.
Ditch the greasy food
Any food which places load on the digestive system is going to lead to phlegm accumulation but the worst culprit of all is greasy and or fried food.
It’s probably no surprise that this food often offers very little nutrition, and what’s more, it is super difficult to digest only adding to the problem. Same goes for sugar!
Eat Like a Queen In the Morning
Eating a large meal just before bed is like trying to write an essay when you’re exhausted – both very difficult tasks. Use the Chinese Medicine clock as your guide. The Spleen energy is in full swing between 7 – 11am. It’s a good time to eat your biggest meal of the day at this time as your digestion is at its peak.
You’ll digest well and have fuel for the day.
Hold The Salad
Just like cold drinks, raw and cold foods are also difficult to digest, they slow down the digestive mechanism. Warm and cooked is always the best option according to TCM theory.
Build your muscles
It’s really important to move your body daily but if you’re digestive system is sluggish and you feel tired at the thought, it’s a pretty good indication that less is more. Start with as short stroll and as your digestive system improves, you’ll find you’re able for more. Movement is also a great way to get the metabolism happy (aka the phlegm moving).
These simple additions to your day may have a profound impact on your body and allow you to move towards a healthier state in no time.
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