Water Element in Shiatsu and TCM
In Shiatsu and in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) the water element corresponds to the Winter. It is a time of tranquility and introspection and helps us be more at ease with our selves allowing us to let go and to relax.
People that are in tune with their water element have strong determination and willpower. They are also able to adapt well to their surroundings and are normally less fearful. If your water element is out of balance you may be fearful and not a very determined person or have little will power. Your energy levels might be low and not allow you to be very active or accomplish the things you would like to.
Characteristics of the water element:
Yang Organ: Bladder
Yin Organ: Kidneys
Time of Year: Winter
Colors: Blue / Black
Direction of movement (energetic): downwards
Health benefits of Seaweed:
In Shiatsu and holistic therapy, diet plays an important role in keeping our body and mind healthy and balanced. Seaweed is a great nutrient-dense food that corresponds to the water element. Of course also because it literally grows under water but also because it has a slight salty taste.
- rich in micronutrients like zinc, folate, selenium, magnesium, iron and calcium.
- rich in iodine which is important for a healthy thyroid. Be careful not to overindulge as this can be harmful for the thyroid. 2-3 times per week and in small amounts should be good.
- it is a good source of OMEGA-3 so helpful for vegetarians.
- helps with digestion and gas.
- rich in fibre and special carbohydrates that help improve your gut bacteria.
* unfortunately there are some negative aspects to eating too much seaweed such as too much iodine as mentioned earlier, or containing heavy metals that can harm your system. There could be some radioactivity due to Fukushima and such so it is important to know where your seaweed is coming from.
If you keep your intake to about 2-3 times a week and only take about 1-2 tablespoons you should be fine and can enjoy the many health benefits these amazing plants have to offer.
Seaweed can be bought fresh or dried. Be sure to soak them when dry in warm water before eating. It can be eaten in salad, soups, as snacks, etc.