What is Jing? In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Jing is our basic vital energy, it’s kind of like the car battery – (where Qi energy is more like the petrol). We as humans need to have both strong Jing & abundant Qi to be able to function well & feel really good, like a car needs both battery & petrol in order to work. So what causes it to run low and how can we restore jing?
Our Jing ‘leaks’ away as we age, & this leaking of vital energy is exacerbated by:
- stress / fear / anxiety
- being stuck in toxic relationships
- playing rough sports
- ongoing sleep disturbance
- emotional upheaval
- extreme weather
- excessive sexual activity
- not drinking enough water
- pregnancy / childbirth / lactating esp multiple consecutive pregnancies
…these all drain our vital energy, making us age quicker. We can help to restore ‘Jing’ & slow ageing by a) stopping the leaking / addressing the above aggravating factors; & b) incorporating more Jing tonifying foods, herbs & activities into our lives.
Signs your Jing is really running low & could use support:
- burn out / fatigue
- low libido & / or infertility
- premature ageing
How To Tonify Your Jing:
- stress management
- gentler martial arts (Qi Gong / Tai Chi)
- giving & serving
- adaptogenic herbs (Astragalus, Rhodiola, Ginsengs, Withania & Goji).
- good sleep habits
- holidays / time out
- ensuring good help & support in the period post birth & spacing pregnancies
- eat more slow-cooked / wintery foods like soups & stews
- black foods (ie black sesame, black beans)
- bone broth
- chlorella, spirulina, seaweeds
- oats, quinoa, amaranth, millet, barley, rye
- roasted nuts
- watercress, celery, asparagus
So if you feel like your battery is dying from any of the aforementioned Jing – depleting things, you need to start tonifying ASAP!
Goji berries are a nice easy addition into your diet – add to smoothies, breakfast, trail mix, salads, stews & curries, or just eat plain to help boost your Jing. The advice from TCM practitioners is don’t go overboard, approx 20 gojis a day (a small handful) is plenty. I can personally confirm that it’s best not to eat too many in one sitting – you may need to race to the loo after a few too many handfuls!! I literally had to run from the beach, across the street & up 3 flights of stairs to my unit at the time! You’ve been warned – as with anything, the difference between a poison & a medicine is the dose!
If you’re interested in the western / scientific explanation, here’s a fairly comprehensive link to read on active constituents.
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