Author: Gabrielle Stratton, L.Ac
Editors: Kate Downes & Yvette Ly
Graphic: Jackie Kim
As we get closer to Lunar New Year, we wanted to share ways to support unique body constitutions for the year of the Yin Water Rabbit.
What is a body constitution?
TCM body constitution 体质 includes “the characteristics of an individual, including structural and functional characteristics, temperament, adaptability to environmental changes and susceptibility to disease. It is relatively stable, being in part genetically determined and in part acquired.”
How one feels on a daily basis, as well as how our body responds to imbalances or illness, depends on our body’s constitution(s).
Here, we explore the Yang Deficiency constitution.
Characteristics of Yang Deficiency
Yang energy is characterized by warmth, movement, and vitality. When there is an insufficiency of Yang, there is a presence of cold or relative excess of Yin.
Yang deficient types tend toward chronic illness, and may experience irregular periods or fertility issues. They often suffer from chronic fatigue, general sluggishness, and low back pain. Digestive issues are common, especially loose stools and excess clear urination.
Thriving in the Yin Water Rabbit Year
The Water Rabbit is about seeking balance between activity and rest. Harnessing the energy of this year can be deeply healing for those with Yang Deficiency.
The Rabbit represents vitality, wisdom and endurance. Cultivating a routine and diet that supports revitalizing Yang can help you tap into the energy of the Rabbit. Reviving Yang through warmth, rest, proper diet, and moving meditation can support transformation and endurance.
Enjoy more warm, whole foods. Roasted veggies and cooked dark, leafy greens can build yang qi. Improve digestion and support healthy liver function by cooking with apple cider vinegar or taking a small amount before meals. Avoid cold, raw foods especially in the colder months. For meat eaters, help balance yin and yang with cooling and warming meats like pork and lamb.
Our Steamed Wild Bison Meatballs are a great example of a yang supportive meal.
Drink ginger and chamomile tea to help with restorative and revitalizing sleep. Our Men’s Treasure Tonic boosts yang and is a great way to add warmth and energy to our morning routine. Add garlic, cinnamon, turmeric, and black pepper to your cooking to further support warmth and circulation. Try our TCM Hot Chocolate for a sweet, warming winter treat!
Movement & Mindfulness
When yang energy is low, it’s easy to feel tired and sluggish. Rather than burn ourselves out on high-intensity exercise, build up your yang gently. Balance low-impact movements that build internal heat, like Qi Gong or Tai Ji, strength training, long walks, or light runs, with more restorative movements like yin yoga to cultivate and maintain Yang energy for the year to come.
Breathwork can help create and store warmth in the body. Try techniques like Box Breathing, Kapalabhati, or Ujjayi breathing.
Remember, the Yin Water Rabbit Year is about expanding life energy. Make use of the energy of this year by supporting yourself through nutrition and warming techniques. Seek out an acupuncturist or herbalist for additional perspective!
Discover our recommendations for: Yin Deficiency, Qi Deficiency, Qi Stagnation, Phlegm Dampness, Damp Heat, Blood Stasis, Allergic Constitution