Beginning of Spring: Health and Wellness Begins From Here

Beginning of Spring: Health and Wellness Begins From Here

The spring rain shocks the spring and clears the valley sky, and the summer is full of awns and the summer heat is connected. There is dew in autumn, cold frost in autumn, and snow in winter and slight severe cold in winter. A “Song of the Twenty-Four Solar Terms” is widely circulated among Chinese people. The twenty-four solar terms are a knowledge system and social practice formed by the Chinese people by observing the annual movement of the sun and understanding the changing patterns of seasons, climate, phenology and other aspects throughout the year. Spring plowing, summer plowing, autumn harvest, winter storage, food, clothing, and farming are done according to the seasons and change with time. This is the language spoken to us by nature.

As a unique scale for Chinese people to mark the years, the twenty-four solar terms not only guide people’s production and life, but also contain secret treasures for maintaining a healthy body, embodying the thinking of traditional Chinese medicine of “complying with nature and harmonizing yin and yang”. Traditional Chinese medicine advocates “the correspondence between nature and man” and believes that humans are closely related to nature. Human body changes and the occurrence of diseases are closely linked to the twenty-four solar terms. Humans should adjust their body rhythms according to the changing laws of the four seasons, and gain physical and mental benefits from harmonious coexistence with nature. balance and long-lasting health.

In order to carry forward the culture of health preservation and disease prevention during the 24 solar terms and inherit the wisdom of traditional Chinese medicine, the health section of this newspaper launches the column “Health Preservation of Traditional Chinese Medicine in the Twenty-Four Solar Terms” from now on. By introducing the different characteristics of each solar term, it elaborates on the health preservation of traditional Chinese medicine. Tao helps you master the methods of staying healthy and extending your life.

“It’s the end of the year when there’s less frost, and spring is coming.” On February 4, we will usher in the first of the twenty-four solar terms – the Beginning of Spring. The beginning of spring is the beginning of spring, which means that the cold winter is over and the spirit of spring is beginning. At this time, the weeping willow buds that are “as tender as gold and soft as silk” and the grass that is jumping in the soil are waiting for the “spring breeze to grow again.” Everything in the world is eagerly looking forward to touching the real spring.

At the beginning of spring, everything has just begun.

cover spring

“The east wind blows away the snow on the plum blossom branches, and restores spring all over the world overnight.” In the poet’s writing, the beginning of spring is the beginning of spring. The east wind blows away the snow on the branches of plum blossoms, and spring comes overnight. From then on, everything recovers and is full of spring. However, due to the vast territory of our country, with a large span from north to south, and different natural rhythms in various places, for most areas, this is just the prelude to spring. From a meteorological point of view, spring begins when the daily average temperature reaches above 10 degrees Celsius for five consecutive days for the first time in a year. Except for some parts of the south, most parts of the country are still in a state of “the cold has not subsided and we are looking forward to spring” at this time.

The ancients subdivided each solar term into three periods, with each period being five days. The three seasons at the beginning of spring are: first, the east wind thaws; the second, stinging insects begin to vibrate; and the third, fish catch the ice. In other words, in the first five days of spring, the east wind brings warmth and the frozen earth begins to thaw; in another five days, the hibernating insects slowly wake up in the caves; in another five days, the ice in the river begins to melt, The fish began to swim up happily. Since the ice on the river had not completely melted, it was like the fish were swimming with ice on their backs. It was warm but still cold!

“A child’s face changes three times a day in spring.” The weather is changeable after the beginning of spring, and the temperature difference between morning and evening is large. According to traditional Chinese medicine, at the beginning of spring, the yang energy is gradually growing and the yin and cold are not exhausted, so it is suitable to “spring cover”. That is to say, when the weather is just getting warmer, do not reduce clothes too early to prevent the spring cold from damaging the nascent yang energy, which may affect the elderly and the weak. People who want to change their clothes should be more cautious and not reduce their clothes suddenly. In “Qian Jin Yao Prescription”, Sun Simiao advocated that spring clothing should be “thick at the bottom and thin at the top”, which means that when adding or removing clothes in spring, attention should be paid to protecting the legs, feet and lower body, while the clothes on the upper body can be appropriately reduced to promote the growth of spring sun. .

After the beginning of spring, the days become longer and the nights become shorter. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that in order to adapt to this change, you can go to bed late and get up early. The traditional Chinese medicine classic “Huangdi Neijing” says that in spring, “sleep at night, get up early, and walk in the courtyard.” That is to say, generally go to bed no later than 23:00, and it is best to go to bed at 22:00 to facilitate the return of liver blood and nourish the organs. After getting up in the morning, it is best to walk in the courtyard or outdoors to feel the growth and nourishment of spring. When taking a walk, you can spread your hair, wear loose clothes, and stretch your body to let the yang energy flow out smoothly.

Yang Qi emerges after the beginning of spring, and the Yang Qi of the human body has the characteristics of growing upward and outward. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that “the head is the meeting point of all yang”. Dredging the meridians of the head at the beginning of spring is beneficial to the growth of yang energy, and combing the hair can help dredge the yang meridians. “Treatise on Health Preservation” says, “In the third month of spring, comb your hair one or two hundred times every morning.” Use a comb or the fingertips of both hands to comb from the hairline on the forehead to the hair roots on the back of the neck. It can nourish and strengthen hair, strengthen the brain and ears, disperse wind and improve eyesight, prevent and treat headaches and insomnia, etc.

bite spring

“On a spring day, a thin plate of lettuce was served, and I suddenly recalled the time when the plum blossoms in the two capitals were blooming. The plate was made of white jade from a noble family, and the vegetables were passed down by delicate hands, sending green silk.” On the first day of spring more than 1,000 years ago, Du Fu saw the spring plate in a foreign country, and couldn’t help but recall the time he spent in the two capitals. During the heyday of Chang’an and Luoyang, at the beginning of spring, wealthy families would put green silk and chives on white jade plates and feed them to each other through delicate hands to celebrate the festival. This is the popular folk custom of “biting spring”. On the first day of spring, spring cakes, radishes, five-spice dishes, etc. are eaten. Spring rolls are also popular in the south. The limerick about spring rolls written by a modern poet is mouth-watering – “The pan-fried spring cakes are like cicada wings, with ten kinds of vegetables wrapped inside. The bean sprouts are long, the leek yellow is bright, the diced pork and lotus root are added with seafood. Crystal clear and tender, crisp and fragrant The smell is lingering.”

The custom of biting spring began in the Han Dynasty and gradually became popular in the Tang Dynasty. “Guanzhong Ji” says that people in the Tang Dynasty “made spring cakes on the first day of spring, wrapping them with spring mugwort, yellow leek, and polygonum buds” and gave them to each other to welcome the spring. In the Ming and Qing Dynasties, “biting spring” mainly meant eating radish on the first day of spring. Li Shizhen wrote in “Compendium of Materia Medica”: “The five pungent vegetables are the beginning of spring on New Year’s Day. The pungent and tender vegetables of onions, garlic, leeks, polygonum, artemisia and mustard are mixed and eaten to take the meaning of welcoming the new year. It is called the five pungent dishes. .”

In fact, in ancient times, people ate Wu Xin Pan not only to “take the meaning of welcoming the new year”, but also to disseminate the energy of the five internal organs, keep fit and prevent epidemics. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that the five elements of spring correspond to wood, the five flavors correspond to pungent, and the five internal organs of the human body correspond to the liver. At the beginning of spring, when the cold is over and spring comes, it is the time when colds are easy to catch. Using five pungents to clear the internal organs and disperse sweat has a certain effect on preventing epidemic influenza.

From the perspective of traditional Chinese medicine practitioners, spring should follow the characteristics of the growth of yang energy and the birth of all things in spring, focusing on the word “sheng”. “Suwen·Zangqi Fashi Lun” says: “The liver governs spring…the liver is suffering from pain and urgency, so eat sweet food quickly to relieve it…the liver wants to be loose, eat pungent food quickly to loosen it, use pungent food to replenish it, and acidity will purge it.” “Therefore, the diet and medicinal diet should be mainly “boosting”. Eat more foods with pungent and sweet properties, such as white radish, yam, coriander, leek, ginger, onion, chrysanthemum, etc. At the same time, you should eat less sour food. Such as oranges, hawthorns, etc., the sour taste entering the liver is not conducive to the growth of yang qi and the release of liver qi, so they should not be eaten in excess.

People tend to get angry easily in spring, with symptoms such as yellowing tongue coating, bitter mouth and dry throat. Chinese medicine recommends a light diet, avoid greasy, cold and spicy foods, and drink plenty of water. People with obvious symptoms of internal heat can eat some foods that can clear away internal heat, such as mung bean soup, honeysuckle tea, chrysanthemum tea, lotus seed heart soaked in water, etc.

Looking for spring

“As winter passes and spring comes, everything revives.” After the beginning of spring, everything will be in a prosperous state, and the metabolism of the human body will also become strong. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the liver belongs to wood and corresponds to spring. Wood does not have the characteristic of sprouting and growing without restraint, and the liver also likes to grow hair, regulate emotions, and vent freely. Traditional Chinese medicine theory believes that “the liver governs emotions” and “anger hurts the liver.” In other words, the liver is closely related to people’s emotions. Modern medicine believes that liver dysfunction will disrupt hormone levels in the body, thereby affecting mood. Therefore, health care in spring focuses on nourishing the liver. The key to nourishing the liver is to be open-minded, optimistic, and maintain a comfortable mood, tranquility and joy.

As the saying goes: “When a hundred herbs sprout, old diseases sprout.” Spring is not only a season of recovery for all things, but also a season where diseases are common. After the beginning of spring, various pathogenic microorganisms grow and multiply and easily invade the human body. Therefore, during this season, we should pay attention to personal protection and open more windows for ventilation to prevent the occurrence of diseases. Patients with chronic diseases should pay special attention to self-care to prevent the recurrence of old diseases. Traditional Chinese medicine teaches that “good qi exists within the body and evil cannot be affected.” That is to say, it is necessary to strengthen physical exercise, eat a reasonable diet, improve physical fitness, and enhance disease resistance.

“Looking for spring all day long, I can’t see it. I walk on the clouds all over Longtou with my pawn shoes.” At the beginning of spring, although it is still in the transition process from cold winter to warm spring, people still like to go out to look for the message of spring and experience the subtlest and most wonderful things. Spring. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that Yang Qi grows in spring, and it is better to exercise and avoid being still. The early morning of the day is when Yang Qi begins to grow, so in spring, early morning is the most suitable time for exercise; however, since it is warm but cold, it is more suitable for gentle exercise at this time. Exercise should be done with hard work and a slight sweat. should. If you are sweating profusely and panting, it will consume your energy and damage your yang, which is not good for your health. It is recommended to choose some gentle exercises, such as Tai Chi, Baduanjin, Wuqinxi and other traditional health-care exercises, or spring outings, kite flying, walking, jogging, etc., which can not only speed up blood circulation, but also promote the movement of qi and blood.

Of all things, hope is the most beautiful. Some people say that the beginning of spring means the establishment of hope. A new round of changing of the four seasons has officially begun, and the spirit of spring will gradually fill the world. This is the meaning of the beginning of spring and the power of spring.


Is 2024 the Year of the Dragon a “year without spring”?Experts say it’s common

According to Xinhua News Agency, Tianjin (Reporter Zhou Runjian), the upcoming Year of the Dragon will have the phenomenon of “no beginning of spring at both ends”, that is, there will be no beginning of spring throughout the year. Folks call such years “years without spring”, and it is rumored that such years are not suitable. Marriage attracts public attention. Experts in astronomical science said that the Springless Year is a normal phenomenon in my country’s lunar calendar and is very common.

How did the “year without spring” come about? Yang Jing, a member of the Chinese Astronomical Society and director of the Tianjin Astronomical Society, explained that ancient Chinese divided the year into twenty-four solar terms, which reflected the different positions of the earth in its orbit around the sun. The current internationally accepted Gregorian calendar is also based on the earth’s solar terms. The calendar is based on the rules of the sun’s revolution, so the corresponding dates of solar terms in the Gregorian calendar are basically fixed, but the corresponding dates in the lunar calendar are very fluid. This is because the lunar calendar is based on two natural cycles of the moon phases and the sun’s annual movements. At the same time, in order to take into account the changes in the cold and heat seasons throughout the year, the ancients also used the method of setting leap months, which is known to many people as ” Nineteen years and seven leaps.” In this way, the lunar year can be divided into leap years and flat years. A leap year has 13 months with about 384 days, and an ordinary year has 12 months with about 354 days.

The Spring Festival is a festival of the lunar calendar, and its date in the Gregorian calendar can be as early as January 21st or as late as February 20th. Since the date of the Beginning of Spring in the Gregorian calendar is around February 4, as the Spring Festival changes in the Gregorian calendar, there may be two Beginning of Spring days in the entire lunar calendar year, or there may be no Beginning of Spring day at all.

Taking the upcoming Jiachen Year of the Dragon as an example, the Spring Festival is on February 10th, and the Beginning of Spring is on February 4th. The Spring Festival in 2025, which is the Year of the Yisi Snake, is on January 29th, and the Beginning of Spring is on February 3rd. Therefore, there is no Beginning of Spring throughout the Year of the Dragon in Jiachen.

Yang Jing said that “no spring years” are not rare, but very common, occurring once every 2 to 3 years on average. Statistics show that in the 100 years of this century, there have been 37 years of double spring, 37 years of no spring, and 26 years of single spring, including the beginning of spring at the beginning of the year 12 times and the beginning of spring at the end of the year 14 times.

Yang Jing said that the “no-spring year” just means that there is no Beginning of Spring day, it does not mean that there is no Beginning of Spring solar term, nor is there no spring, and it has nothing to do with good or bad luck, weddings and funerals.

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