In Chinese Medicine, our bodies’ life force, or Qi, flows along certain energy pathways or meridians to keep our spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical health in balance. Yin and Yang maintain a balanced Qi when the two are in harmony.
Yin and Yang are opposite but complementary energies. They are interdependent but never separate. Yin, the female essence, is cooling; Yang, the male essence, is warming. When an imbalance occurs in the, Yin and Yang always need to be considered.
What Are the Signs of Yin Deficiency?
Without the cooling influence of Yin, the body can become overheated, causing illness or chronic conditions. Here are 8 common signs of Yin deficiency:
- Scanty periods
- Hot flashes
- Night sweats
- Vivid dreams or nightmares
- Dry skin, nails, hair
- Red tongue tip
Yin deficiency can often be the result of prolonged stress levels that outweigh the amount of time we spend at rest. There may also be excess Yang in your life. Genetics, poor dietary habits, sleep deprivation or a chronic illness can also lead to Yin deficiency.
How Do I Know If I Have Yin Deficiency?
One way to determine Yin deficiency is to start with a lifestyle check. On a piece of paper, make two columns; name one Yang and the other Yin. First, write all your Yang activities such as active endeavors that keep you running from morning to night. Is your job consuming you? Do you work out as hard as you can at the gym? Next, write all your Yin activities such as meditation, being outdoors, or sleeping. These are activities which help you restore and rejuvenate.
When you compare the columns, which is longer? It’s important to engage equally in active and quiet activities, which is one key to balancing Yin and Yang. Once you begin to recognize where your lifestyle may need adjustments, you can start to regain the all-important harmonious Yin and Yang.
If your Yin needs nourishing, here are some things you can start doing today:
- Sleep nightly from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
- Wake without an alarm clock every day.
- Rest and take vacations or stay-cations.
- Drink adequate water daily to hydrate the body.
- Avoid coffee or other caffeinated beverages.
Eat healthful fats (full fat organic dairy, avocado, good oils, nuts, and
organic and local meats).
- Be outdoors in nature daily.
- Participate in slow-moving or still activities such as yoga or meditation.
- Take time daily to experience stillness.
- Practice gratitude.
- Stay at home in the evening hours.
Restore Yin/Yang balance
A balanced lifestyle along with Chinese herbal remedies can help put you on the path to balance. Our lives tend to be hectic, but it is possible to take time for you and your Yin. In addition to lifestyle changes, working with your Chinese medicine practitioner to craft an herbal remedy can help restore and maintain Yin and Yang balance.
Are you burning through your Yin? Read this article to find out more.