Get Updates In Your Inbox !

Sign up with email to receive news & updates.

Springtime Qi-medy ~ TCM Tips to Dance Through the Season

Let’s tackle this wild ride into spring by delving into the realm of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).

Spring, ahh, Mother Nature hitting the refresh button, urging everything to wake up and get moving. But, transitioning from cozy hibernation to the hustle and bustle of spring isn’t always a smooth ride. It’s like trying to coax a bear out of its den and convincing it to join the party! GRRRR.

In TCM terms we call this Qi Stagnation.

See if any of the below speak to you.

Irritability: Ever felt like a grumpy dragon guarding its treasure? Yeah, that’s the mood we’re talking about!

Emotional outbursts: Your emotions are like fireworks on New Year’s Eve – unpredictable and explosive!

Anxiety and depression: Sometimes you feel like you’re on a rollercoaster ride through the depths of your own mind.

Muscle tension: Your body feels as tight as a drum ready to burst.

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS): Your monthly visitor arrives like an uninvited guest bringing chaos to the party.

Menstrual irregularities: Your monthly cycle is as unpredictable as a tornado in a teacup.

Headaches: It’s like a tiny goblin is hammering away inside your skull.

Digestive issues: Your stomach feels like a bubbling cauldron of chaos.

Funny as these sound, the reality is that these are some of the very words my patients say to me to describe their feelings and sensations during spring transition. 

Let’s lighten your load and relieve your Qi stagnation with some simple solutions.

Here’s the easy part: getting your Qi moving again depends on FUN. Think you’re up for a little FUN challenge?
As we explain in Yin Yang Reset, Foods in the Qi Stagnation reset are light, fresh, and delicious. Your brain responds to the deep, rich colours of young shoots and greens and lightly cooked, tangy flavours from around the world!

Here’s a day’s worth of my favorite recipes from Yin Yang Reset:

Apricot Banana Breakfast Cookies

Want your family to love you more? Let them eat cookies for breakfast! Or, better yet, teach them to make these cookies to make your mornings easier. And be sure to make them big and hearty, ’cause mama needs to eat. This is breakfast after all — one of our three favourite meals.

Preparation tip: Make sure the batter is wet, but not too runny.

Makes 1 dozen

2 very ripe bananas, mashed (riper = better flavour)

2 tbsp almond (or sunflower seed) butter 

½–1 tbsp raw honey

1 cup gluten-free rolled oats

½ cup dried apricots, chopped into small pieces (or dried organic strawberries, peaches, plums, or cherries)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a baking sheet with butter, coconut oil, or olive oil, or line with parchment paper.  

In a medium bowl, mash the bananas with a fork or potato masher until almost smooth (some lumps are okay). Stir in the almond butter and honey until well combined. 

Pour in the rolled oats and mix. Then toss in the dried apricots and stir until combined.

Spoon onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. They’ll still be soft and won’t really brown, so just bake until they firm up. Let cool on a rack before eating.

White Bean Cucumber & Tomato Salad

This simple, light salad will keep you coming back for more. An easy, stand-alone, refreshing meal or a side to your main dish, this salad looks gorgeous and tastes delicious. Oh, and it moves your Qi. Win, win, win!

Serving tip: Serve at your next party as a dip. Call it a “chunky bean salsa,” and grab a bag of organic blue corn tortilla chips for scooping it up. 

Serves 3–4 

2 14-oz cans organic navy beans (or any small white bean)

1 small cucumber, diced

1 large organic tomato, diced

1 organic yellow bell pepper, diced

½ cup minced parsley 

3 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp organic tamari soy sauce (or Bragg Liquid Aminos)

juice of ½–1 lemon

½ tbsp maple syrup

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a medium bowl, toss together the beans, cucumber, tomato, pepper, and parsley. Drizzle oil on top and mix. 

Add the soy sauce, ½ the lemon juice, and the maple syrup. Toss to combine. Season with salt, pepper, and a little more lemon juice, to taste. 

Great to eat right away, but it really soaks up the flavours if you let it sit for a couple of hours. 

Roasted Squash & Quinoa Bowls with Tangy Nut Sauce

This is the ultimate dish to help counteract overindulgence. (Yes, we all do it.) Delicata squash may be hard to find, but it’s what helps create the lightness and easy-to-digest factors we need after a night, or more, of excess consumption.

Zucchini tip: Zucchini is one of the top GMO foods so we strongly recommend buying organic. Your liver and hormones will thank you.

Serves 4 

Squash & filling

3 delicata squash, roasted (acorn and butternut work well too)

1 cup quinoa (3 cups cooked)

2 medium organic zucchini

Tangy Nut Sauce

½ cup nut butter (almond, sunflower seed, cashew)

½ cup water

1 tbsp organic tamari soy sauce (or Bragg Liquid Aminos)

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

½ tbsp sesame oil

½ tbsp maple syrup (or honey)

1 clove garlic, minced

Preheat the oven to 425°F. 

Roast the whole squashes until they are soft and fork tender, about 45 minutes. Slice them lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.

Meanwhile, cook the quinoa according to package directions, or rinse well and cook in twice as much water. Grate the zucchini. 

To make the sauce, in a small bowl whisk together all the ingredients. 

To assemble, scoop the cooked quinoa into the hollowed part of each squash. Top with the raw zucchini, drizzle with the sauce, and serve.

Activities for moving your Qi: Moving three times a week is ideal, but make it movement you LOVE. If you don’t love anything, just try something, then try something else.

Moving Qi will harness your creativity: Did you let go of a hobby you loved because you got too busy? Is there something you’ve always dreamed of trying? This is your time to pick up a journal or some knitting needles, start an indoor sprout garden, or dig out those paints. But whatever you choose, do it with a childlike spirit.

So, there you have it! Embrace the chaos of spring with open arms, knowing that you have the tools and wisdom of TCM to guide you through. Here’s to a season of growth, renewal, and endless possibilities!


Sara Ward

Sara Ward

Step into my world, where the momentum of our combined energies makes healing contagious.



You May Also Like