What Is Zapping our Energy? And How To Sustain it – Our Vital Life Force?
Healthy Living Blog
by Dr. Rachelle Tetreault, DAOM, L,Ac
The vital life force or energy which flows through all things living should be abundant and free of any stagnations or deficiencies. This essence of life force exists in each and every one of us and helps our mind, body, and spirit to fully connect on many levels. This is what keeps us alive and gives us the ability to function optimally in an often energy deprived world. Often, our daily routines and tasks can make us devoid of energy both mentally and physically. So, we need to ensure we take care in not only sustaining our energy but harnesting our energy sources.
Before we take a look at what we can do to ensure good energy, let’s look at the many symptoms which may present besides just having low energy, itself. These may include even true fatigue and/or exhaustion as well. A lack of libido, mental fogginess, irritability, and poor sleep can all reflect poor vital energy. Other signs may include sugar cravings, weight gain, and/or poor digestion. When the energy sources are low, the spleen and/or kidney energy is generally the root cause which not only creates digestive or metabolism sluggishness but also chronic issues like insomnia and chronic fatigue.
Deficient spleen and kidney energy can be caused from poor food choices or irregular eating patterns if these persist over a period of time. One of the major causes is dealing with high levels of chronic stress. Having daily draining activities which deplete us both mentally and physically will eventually create these deficiencies. In which, this over time, leads to poor sleep quality, improper diet, or excess stress which can reap havoc on both our spleen and kidney energy sources.
Other organs of the body also get affected. Low energy in the digestive system can not only create poor nutrient absorption but also low blood production, bloating, and weakness. Lung energy which is depleted reveals itself in a compromised immune system with frequent colds, asthma, shortness of breath, and/or spontaneous sweating. Heart energy deficiency shows symptoms of lacking joy, heart palpitations, and circulatory issues within the body. Kidney energy deficiency may reflect hair loss, memory, and even chronic knee or back pain or weakness. Clinically, major energy deficiency signs show not only a level of fatigue but a weak pulse with a swollen or scalloped tongue on observation.
Prevention begins with having a balance in both your personal life and work life. This is also in addition to the intake of nourishing foods for the spleen energy to be at its peak. This would be to avoid processed foods, too many raw or cold foods, and adhere to spleen food therapy given by your practitioner. Avoid caffeinated drinks or at least limit to one cup if tolerated. Too much caffeine robs us of precious fluid but also overstimulates the body. This is better remedied by taking a short rest to truly replenish and restore.
Breathing techniques with fresh outside air surrounded by nature and breath guided tai chi helps to harness energy and preserve the essence for when the body really needs it. Keeping the body properly covered in drafts, cooler weather, and avoid fans and vents help preserve wei energy for the immune system towork at its best. Being in bed before 10pm to sleep allows the liver to fully cleanse which creates overall energy for all the other organs of the body. This also allows better blood production and spleen energy. Hormone balance is dependent on proper nutrition, good blood production, and managing stress at a healthy level.
Depending on the root cause of the energy deficiency, some herbal formulas may be prescribed if needed. The body can be so depleted that it is necessary to tonify the yuan source qi or awaken the shen (mind/spirit). There are both herbal formulas and acupuncture techniques used to help provide a heightened adaptogenic function to improve the ability to adapt better to stress. This also helps to improve both mental and physical functions. This also increases basal metabolism to increase both energy levels and an overall sense of well-being.
So, you know it wouldn’t be right if I wrote a blog and didn’t include food therapy specificities. So, here goes: In, a nut shell, eat more frequently but small meals and hydrate very well. The best energy source foods are found to be pumpkin, pumpkin seeds, black beans, soybeans, pearl barley, sweet potatoes, and figs (to name a few). Sea vegetables such as kelp and dulse help provide nutrient dense minerals which many of us are lacking. A sublingual B-complex will help the body especially in times of stress. This will help the body to utilize and process energy as needed. A well-balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables is the way to go. Eat good sustainable wild-caught fish and the Mediterranean diet is still considered the healthiest and has stood its test in time.
Lastly, mental energy is just as much involved as physical energy. We need to invest in time and activities to ensure that we protect our mind’s energy. This can be done by balancing our life and prioritizing what really matters. Also, journaling, processing thoughts and emotions, and having connections with friends, family, and others. Call today for your assessment and let’s begin the journey to optimal health! 772-626-6419