In TICM excess weight is categorised into patterns in order to treat the root imbalance. Whichever organs are impacted further promote excess weight. Trying to lose weight without addressing these imbalances is an uphill battle and does get frustrating especially when you are eating well, exercising and doing all the right things. One thing I do say to people is if your stressed or angry do not be surprised if you do not shift anything. Both stress and anger impact the Liver especially in the times we are living.
There are three main categories for weight gain. Phlegm-dampness accumulation, Spleen and Liver issues. TICM uses ancient methods that work very well in our modern world. Our current lifestyles that promote overwork, stress, worry, skipping meals, out of season eating and so forth have placed a burden on our Spleen function. A weak Spleen makes it tough to maintain healthy weight. Here are some TICM tips to help Spleen and Liver function while invigorating energy (Qi) and our circulation. These improvements will also help our moods. The better we feel, the more we want to place an emphasis on taking care of ourselves.
Meals: focus on consistent meals at regular times daily. Do not eat late at night, make sure you eat at least 4 hours before bedtime. Our Stomach and Spleen like to have regular meals at regular times.
Refrain from snacking and focus on satisfying meals that include protein, carbs like rice and sweet potatoes with several cooked vegetables. Try for 4-5 varieties of vegetables.
Halve your intake of carbohydrates for several weeks but increase your consumption of vegetables and proteins. Eat more rice and legumes, and avoid wheat and refined carbs that produce phlegm and dampness. White rice and sweet potatoes are loved by the Spleen, but not over consume.
Breakfast should be eaten daily to invigorate Spleen function, focus on savoury foods. Sweet potato or congee with vegetables, protein, bone broth and ginger powder are powerful healing foods. Ginger powder is a powerful weight loss tool.
Eliminate cold drinks, raw foods. Eat cooked foods for easier digestion. Think of your digestion like a fire that you want to keep burning.
Refrain from drinking liquids right before and during your meal. Only drink warm beverages like warm water with lemon, ginger powder tea after you have eaten.
Reduce or cut out completely sugary foods, processed foods, alcohol.
Cut out dairy. Dairy produces phlegm and dampness, two things trying to be drained from the body during this time.
Focus on emotional health, which is a big factor in weight gain. Do something daily to make yourself happy. Think child like, pure joy. Paint, go for a walk, volunteer, journal......
Get moving. Moderate exercise daily promotes the flow of energy (Qi) and Blood, helping to eliminate dampness and phlegm which is essentially, fat. Exercises like Qigong open channels and invigorate the flow of energy (Qi) and Blood, great for weight loss.
Make sure you are eliminating daily. Fibre rich vegetables, exercise and warm liquids help that.
Hijama, acupuncture, moxibustion, heat lamp, Chinese herbs, cupping, Gua sha all provide numerous benefits for removing phlegm, draining dampness, promoting the smooth flow of Blood, energy (Qi) and so much more. Work with a skilled practitioner to develop a consistent regime. Take the time to nurture yourself and your body.
Lymphatic drainage done through Gua sha, infrared sauna, or lymphatic drainage can help remove stubborn toxins that have been trapped and have created fat pockets and create fatigue.