Thursday, October 10, 2013

Why Autumn is the Season for the Lungs and Large Intestine

According to Oriental tradition, the metal element encompasses the autumn season and highlights the lungs and large intestine.  The fall is the perfect time to address the needs of these two important organs.

Specialized Kinesiology is the energy system I use for assessments.  This gives one the opportunity to look at the body relationally; organs, glands and muscles.  Muscle testing can give a profound up to the moment insight into the body’s strengths as well as its stresses.

In regard to the lungs, the muscles sharing this same meridian are:  the anterior serratus (think the 'red cap' salute), the deltoids (rotator cuff), coracobrachialis (think ‘the Fonz’ salute), and the diaphragm.  If the energy circuit to the muscles is weak, logic would say that this same lack of energy supply would also affect the organs and glands on the same river of energy.

The lungs often get used by the body’s detox system as an overflow system.  This once a year clean out can be really helpful, especially before the additional stresses of extreme cold and dry heat.  There are many herbal formulas this help to clean the lungs and respiratory system.  Lung Flush by Omega Alpha and the Inula formulas by Genestra are excellent. 

Hydration is essential here as well.  This means 1 to 2 ounces every ½ hour.  Foods rich in Vitamin C and eating lung and spleen can be helpful to strengthen the lungs.  This can be obtained in pill form for the squeamish.

The large intestine is the other organ on the metal meridian.  The muscles in this group include the Fascia lata which runs down the outside of the thigh from hip to knee, the Hamstrings, and the Quadratus lumborum. We don’t tend to see back issues or knee issues, or chronically tight hamstrings as having at their root, an elimination problem.  As with the lungs, Vitamin C and optimum hydration are essential for bowel health.

There are many good bowel cleanse products available.  I do have a caution here.  If you have or suspect you have some problems or impacted areas, bulking up all of a sudden is not a wise plan.  Something simple like increasing vegetables in your diet will increase natural fibre.

Flax seed tea (a heaping teaspoon of seeds cracked open in a coffee grinder, put into a mug and fill mug with very hot water.  Let it sit for a few minutes until the contents get a little thick and drink it down).  Food grade aloe vera juice can be helpful as well.  This is a very gentle healing approach especially if there is discomfort or inflammation present.  Marshmallow herb and Slippery Elm are helpful to lubricate and soothe.  These herbs do not interfere with absorption in the GI tract.

To improve hydration in the bowel, cook barley grain in lots of water. To decrease excess water in the bowel pan-toast barley until it is fragrant and then add water and tender-cook.

How fortunate we are to have a 2,000 year old health system at our fingertips; the best of the east and west and the old and the new.  Integrated health is the blessing of this day and age.  

Metal Element Nutrition

The following are Metal Element foods:

 Fennel seed, Fenugreek, Flax seed, Parsnips, 
Horse radish, Daikon radish, Chai tea in milk, Ginger, Barley, White potatoes, Cauliflower, 
Cabbage, Tofu

Wilted Kale Salad with Mushrooms and Red Onion

  • Curly Green Kale sliced fine, enough to fill a large heat proof salad bowl, taking out the large stems and veins
  • Slice ¼ medium red onion in thin slices
  • Slice 2 Cups of firm white button mushrooms 
  • Heat 1/3 Cup of light oil in sauté pan on medium heat
Add the sliced mushrooms sauté and stir frequently until you see the mushroom exuding juice
Quickly add ¼ Cup of Balsamic vinegar and cook for 2 minutes

Take off heat and add 1 heaping tsp of Dijon Mustard into the centre of the pan stirring well to mix
Quickly pour hot dressing over the kale and mix well
The Kale will turn a bright green.
Taste add more Balsamic dressing if needed
Add onions and toss lightly
To serve, grind Gomasio coarsely and sprinkle on top
In this way Gomasio tastes like bacon

Japanese Gomasio

Rinse 1 cup of brown sesame seeds in sieve under tepid running water
Let drain
Use dry cast iron skillet –medium heat 
Cut dulse into very small bits using scissors
Toast dulse in pan until the dulse is crisp
Add 1 tsp Celtic salt –ground fine

Up end the sieve and dump in sesame seeds all at once
Spread the seeds over bottom of skillet and leave it to dry for several minutes until the seeds no longer stick to the bottom of the pan.  Be patient.  This is the 'screw up' point.

Stir gently and fairly constantly (you may need to reduce heat)
This is ready when seeds are fragrant, slightly golden and hollow (crush one to see)
Cool and store in an airtight jar.
To release the calcium and minerals inside the seed, coarsely grind the seeds with a mortar and pestle or by using a small coffee grinder.  Do this just before serving. 

For an interesting and calcium rich salad dressing, grind about ¼ cup with mortar and pestle, or small coffee grinder and add to a basic vinaigrette.  

2 parts oil to one part vinegar - If you find dressings have too much bite, add 1 tablespoon of water.  

Balsamic Vinaigrette
Balsamic Vinegar is strong tasting – so add a little less than the full part
Crush 1 garlic clove and add to oil
Add 1Tbs of Dijon mustard (emulsifier)
Herbamere to taste

1 comment:

  1. hi nelda,

    what a wonderful and interesting post! i thoroughly enjoyed it. and thanks for sharing these great recipes. they sound delicious, healthy and easy to prepare. i will certainly try them out.

    wishing you a lovely week ahead~