By Sheela Szymkowiak, Certified Reflexologist and Holistic Health Educator

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the focus for Winter is on the Kidney and Bladder, which are both of the Water Element. This month, we’ll tell you how to boost your Kidney energy.  (Keep posted: in January, we’ll focus on Bladder Meridian health).

The Kidneys control the growth and development of bones and nourish the marrow, which is the body’s source of red and white blood cells. Weak kidney energy is therefore a prime cause of anemia and immune deficiency.

TCM doctors view the spinal cord and the brain as forms of marrow, and therefore poor memory, inability to think clearly, and backache are all regarded as indicators of impaired kidney function and deficient kidney energy.

The Kidney’s positive emotional attributes are wisdom, rationality, clear perception, gentleness, and self-understanding. The negative attributes are fear, loneliness, insecurity and shock.

Kidney Acupressure Point (Caution: do not use if pregnant or with low blood pressure)

Locate Kidney 1 in the crease of the ball of the foot, where the colour changes from the ball to the sole. Massage slowly with your thumb or have a partner tonify (rest gently on acupoint with gentle pressure) this point with their elbow. Dispersing stagnated kidney flow can assist all the other meridian flows in the body to balance as well. (Caution: do not use Kidney 1 if pregnant or have low blood pressure)

Best foods to boost your Kidney energy

Vegetables and fruits Dark, leafy green vegetables are the best choice. Other Kidney Qi boosting veggies include asparagus, cucumbers and celery. Include these fruits: blueberries, blackberries, mulberry, etc. – all being dark blue or black hues, the colour of the Water Element.

Black beans and kidney beans are excellent examples of kidney shaped foods that nourish and benefit Kidney energy (Qi).

Seeds and nuts – Flax, pumpkin, sunflower, black sesame seeds, walnuts and chestnuts

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