Heather Bourne

Traditional Chinese Medicine Practice

Common cold and TCM

TCM has very efficient ways of “treating” a cold before it has a chance to settle in the body.

At the first symptoms of a common cold (runny nose, cold shivers, neck stiffness, headache),

the following acupressure point (Waiguan) can help expel the pathogens that are trying to enter

the body. Press and massage this point several times a day. The point may feel sensitive or even

painful. Keep on pressing and massaging as it will activate your defense mechanism.

According to TCM, a common cold enters the body through the neck or upper back. Therefore, it is also helpful to rub the back of the neck with a warming cream (i.e. tiger balm) for example before bedtime. Keep the neck warm and protected from the wind and cold.


Soups are also a great way to overcome a cold.

Here’s an example of a soup recipe: fry an onion, garlic, leeks and carrots with a piece of fresh ginger, add water (or vegetable broth), cook for at least 20 minutes and season to taste.

Avoid dairy products.

Ginger and other warming spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, turmeric, cloves, cumin can help expel the cold. Add them to your dishes. 


Please note that this advice may not apply if you are already showing signs of a fever.

I wish you a swift recovery

Immune system

According to TCM, our immune system is governed by three main organs: the kidneys, the spleen and the lungs.

Each of these organs has an emotion associated with it. Kidneys: fear; Spleen: Worry; Lungs: Sadness / Grief.

At all times – and in particular in the current climate - it is essential to avoid succumbing to excessive fear, worry or sadness. This will only weaken the immune system.

Strengthening these organs will contribute to resistance to disease and will also allow a more balanced approach with those emotions.

Here are a few tips on how to take care of these organs:

Kidneys: nourish yourself from what you do in your life, practice meditation, sleep before 11pm, avoid excessive work (physical and mental).

Spleen: eat regularly, eat warm, cooked foods, reduce the amount of dairy products, reduce the sugar, favour cereal and root vegetables.

Lungs: breath! In nature if possible… learn to breath deeply, fully and consciously.


If you need any further tips, just contact me… I’d be happy to help!

It’s that time of the year again… time to indulge. Indulge in good food, good wine, good spirits, good company…

Do it presently, do it consciously.

Appreciate the good food. Appreciate the good wine. And if you over-do it, don’t beat yourself about it!!

Here’s a few “TCM” tips to go through the end of year celebrations in a healthy way:

  • Take a few moments each morning to be quiet. Be with yourself. Be thankful. Make the intention for your day to be filled with joy and peace.


  • Drink a cup of green tea in the morning (especially after overdoing it the night before!).


  • Avoid stress, anger or worrying while preparing your dinner. Prepare the food in good spirits (it’ll taste much better!!).


  • Eat consciously. Enjoy your food. Savour every mouthful.


  • Laugh a lot - Love even more.


  • Go for a walk in Nature.


  • After a heavy meal, a few drops of Angostura bitters in hot water will help you digest.


If you’ve overeaten, massage your legs, insisting on the lateral side of the shinbone from the knee to the ankle. You can also massage the point “Jiexi”.


… Yeah, the family dynamics may be a little difficult to deal with at times… and yes, the absence of loved ones is strongly felt… but when you look around, I’m sure there’ll be at least a handful of gems you can be thankful for.

With all my love and best wishes,




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