Ai Okubo, a Chinese medicine pharmacist, tells us
Self-medication in June

vol.2 Identifying bad habits and correcting disturbances in the autonomic nervous system

May is a month of warm, cheerful, and pleasant days. However, in June, the rainy season begins and the climate shifts to summer. Recently, temperatures are starting to rise earlier, and in addition to the high temperatures and humidity, many places have turned on their air conditioners, so the season when it's easy to feel sluggish is likely to be prolonged.

【table of contents】

・Mind and body tendencies

・Common disorders

・Trouble-solving medication

mind and body tendencies

At the end of June, we reach the summer solstice, when the sun is at its highest position, and the summer's ultraviolet rays pour down. In Chinese medicine, this is expressed as "the most yang of the year". If the rainy season front arrives at this time, the humidity will build up in the hot weather, and the sweat that is released to regulate body temperature will not evaporate properly, causing autonomic nervous system disturbances.

In the first place, it is said that the ``heart,'' which is one of the five organs in Chinese medicine, becomes weaker during summer. Furthermore, the rainy season is hot and humid, and low pressure systems frequently pass through the area, making the spleen, one of the five organs, more susceptible to weakness.

Also, when the rainy season begins, the days should be long, but rain clouds stagnate for a long time, resulting in shorter daylight hours and more people refraining from going out. Therefore, there may be a lack of serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain whose production is promoted by the benefits of sunlight, and which works to stabilize the mind, leading to disturbances in the autonomic nervous system .

In this way, after the rainy season begins, two organs, the ``heart,'' which stabilizes the mind, and the spleen, which nourishes stamina, tend to weaken, making it difficult to manage one's physical condition. If you are already feeling unwell, it would be a good idea to resolve the issue now, before the rainy season starts, while you still have plenty of time in mind and body, so that you can enjoy the coming summer in good health.

Disorders that are likely to occur

In June, there are many conditions that easily disrupt the autonomic nervous system. Therefore, the mind and body respond sensitively to even the slightest lack of diet or stress .

This is also a time when food items are more perishable, so more people may refrain from buying raw vegetables and become constipated. When the autonomic nervous system is disrupted, people tend to avoid immediate troubles, and end up eating ultra-processed foods such as instant foods and pastries. Many foods with artificial flavors or high in sugar or fat are addictive, and may lead to unbalanced eating.

More and more people are thinking about starting a diet in the summer, but as a result of eating instant foods and sweet breads, many people end up cutting out their usual 3 meals a day. This may also lead to malnutrition.

If you continue to live like this, you will feel sluggish in the morning, get headaches on rainy days, feel depressed all the time, have difficulty concentrating, feel extremely sleepy after meals, worsen PMS, menstrual pain that feels heavy in the lower back, and before menstruation. The start of summer may be difficult, with many problems such as acne and oily skin , and not only the weather but also your mood.

Trouble-solving medication

So, what can we do to avoid falling into a situation where we have to endure such hardships?

In the humid month of June, rather than adding something, try letting go of unnecessary things you're attached to.

For example, I always buy sweets when I go to a convenience store, I always eat ice cream before bed, I always drink alcohol with dinner, I stay up late every day and watch videos before going to bed, I always prepare coffee while I'm at work, and I always make ramen noodles. Look for bad habits that have become a pattern within you, such as stopping at a store or bakery every time you pass by. First, try giving up something that has become a habit, even if it's only for a short period of time, such as a week.

Casual actions that are repeated unconsciously and accumulate can cause harm to the body. There's no problem if it's just an occasional reward, but before the rainy season starts, you should review it to see if it's become a pattern or a habit.

If you record your actions and meals in your notebook or cell phone and look at them objectively, you may discover habits that you weren't aware of.

It's also important to wake up in the morning and drink hot water to reset your mind and take some time to reflect on yourself.It's important to make a switch.

When the climate changes rapidly, you should be able to stay healthy and comfortable at all times by changing your behavior flexibly.


Ai Okubo

Pharmacist, Chinese herbal medicine counselor. She studied Chinese medicine, medicinal cuisine, and oriental beauty at Beijing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and became the first Japanese to receive an international TCM cosmetology qualification. After managing herbal medicine pharmacies, dispensing pharmacies, and beauty salons, she became involved in product development, writing, and corporate consulting as a medical and beauty expert, including herbal medicine and herbal medicine.

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