Could the time of day dictate how you feel?
Well according to Chinese Medicine, there are 12 2-hour periods of the days that correlate to a specific meridian. When that period presents, there are symptoms that present when there is a deficiency in that organ system but the great news is if you make a few little changes, you can actually improve your health.
In Part 1 we covered the times
5am – 7am: Large Intestine Clear toxins during this time with regular bowel motions.
7am – 9am: Stomach Meridian Breakfast time
9am – 11am: Spleen Meridian Digestion time and receiving nutrients
Now we will start part 2 with the Heart Meridian…….
11am – 1pm: Heart Meridian This is the time of day to have a nap. It is great for people who have anxiety to nurture the heart energy during this time, but overall for every one it is a great time to have a nap. This way you rejuvenate your energy and can give a very productive effort in the second half of the day. If you can’t nap, take time away for a few minutes and just close your eyes. After your nap have some water and go for a light walk. This will increase blood and its circulation in the body.
1pm – 3pm: Small intestine Meridian The small intestine absorbs nutrients into the blood stream where they are distributed to other organ systems and prevents waste/toxins from entering. The toxins are sent down to the large intestine. Issues with leaky gut result from a diseased small intestine allowing un-metabolised toxins entering the blood stream. Many diseases present from leaky gut including many auto-immune diseases. Over time if someone can’t absorb nutrients optimally it can lead to disease. Heal the small intestine by avoiding foods that you have intolerance to or are allergic.
3pm – 5pm: Bladder Meridian This may not resonate with your listeners but this should be the time of day that a person is most productive. They are energetic, have great judgment and are focused on their work. But many people complain about the 3 o’clock blues. Feeling tired and sluggish and needing a pick me up. This is when your nutritional choices, sleep (lack of) and exercise can impact this time of the day. If you follow the recommendations earlier you should feel energized now. This is because it is also known as the ‘Shen Time’ as it’s the peak time for your metabolism. This is when you should increase your water intake.
5pm – 7pm: Kidney Meridian This is the time of day when yang energy starts to move into yin energy. Kidneys are in charge of water metabolism, so keeping the body hydrated as well as expelling waste through our urine. If you are craving salt then it could be due to kidney deficiency or adrenal fatigue. There’s an old Chinese saying that goes, “Bathing the feet in a hot bath is more beneficial than eating ginseng”. The kidney and liver meridians are situated in the feet so bathing your feet means you are nourishing the meridians that enter these organs.
7pm – 9pm: Pericardium Pericardium is a thin membrane that wraps around the heart and acts to protect it. So the emotions that affect the heart need to go through the pericardium first. It’s like a body guard for the heart. For example when someone feels anger it will go to the pericardium through the pericardium meridian and then affect the heart. People with strong spleen/stomach have a strong heart and vice versa people with weak spleen/stomach have a weak heart so we protect our heart via keeping our spleen/stomach strong. This can be achieved by resting after meals. This allows the food to be thoroughly digested.
9pm – 11pm: San Jiao Meridian The San Jiao meridian connects the upper organs, the middle organs and the lower organs to transport fluid and energy throughout the body. This is the time w should go to sleep. We reach the best quality of sleep in the next period so we must be asleep before then.
11pm – 1am: Gallbladder Meridian During this stage your energy is being replenished for the next day. Even though night is for resting, the gallbladder is doing anything but rest. That is why, people who don’t sleep in the previous period feel alert and energized at 11pm. Your bile is completely metabolised during this time and your body can only do this efficiently when you are asleep. If you are not sleeping during this time you may acquire symptoms associated with a weakened GB function such as bitter taste in the mouth, frequent sighing, pain in the chest and ribs, skin feels dull and hot.
1am – 3am: Liver Meridian This is the time the liver detoxifies. It is important to minimise brain activity before bed as this process can be disrupted by over thinking and also stress. If you awake during this time the liver doesn’t efficiently detoxify and it can lead to illness down the track.
3am – 5am: Lung Meridian In preparation of the new day, the body starts to balance blood and energy all over the body. That’s what the lungs do, distribute energy throughout the body. Waking the body at this time means the lung will send more energy to the organ that is working as oppose to evenly sending it throughout the entire body. Breathing exercises are great to promote a deep sleep during this time. White food nourishes the lungs: turnip, sesame, bean curd, soy milk, parsnip, white fungus, snow pear.
5am – 7am: Large Intestine This is the time to awake. The large intestine is now ready to empty and have a healthy elimination of toxins in the body. Having a warm glass of water when you awaken can help move this process along. If there is a sluggish stool this is an issue with the stomach/spleen if there is constipation, then this is an issue with fluid. Either this is due to heat drying up the fluid in the bowel or the lung meridian not effectively distributing vital energy to the bowel. Retention of toxins can upset the skin health, and putting strain on other organs that eliminate toxins such as the lymphatic system, lungs, kidneys and skin.
So there we have it; another example of how connected we are to Mother Nature.
When we live our life constantly in a hurry and disconnected from our environment and the signals our body gives us on a daily basis disease will present.
By following these recommendations, you can help your body get the most out of these times. If you feel you need more help, head on over to a Chinese Medicine practitioner and they will be able to encourage your body to work more efficiently and be more balanced.
Yours in Great Health,