By Cathy McNease, Herbalist
Autumn arrives with cold nights, shorter days, colorful leaves and the beginning of cold and flu season. The lungs and large intestines are the organ systems that are prominent during autumn, leading to an increased vulnerability in the respiratory system. There are many natural remedies we can employ to keep our lungs healthy in the months to come, as well as treat them in the event sickness befalls us.
First, breathe…deeply, slowly, regularly. The lungs take energy from the air we breathe. If you are sitting hunched over a computer or a desk all day, the lungs cannot receive much volume of air, so take breaks to expand the chest and breathe. Recently, a patient told me that she was falling down easily and felt that she was not very well connected to the earth. I gave her a breathing exercise to imagine that carrot-like roots were growing out of the bottoms of her feet and going deep into the earth to ground and balance her. This exercise can also be useful when we get “too much in our heads” and cannot turn off the endless rambling of the mind. Stop and breathe…deeply, slowly, regularly, through your feet. This helps us deal with pain, physical or emotional, as well as anxiety, fear and panic. And, deep breathing heals the lungs.