When I was a little girl staying the night at my Nanna and Pop’s place, my Nanna’s morning greeting would be ‘did you have a bowel movement?”.
She’d let that one drop with the same ease as most (normal) people would ask ‘How did you sleep?’
Years later I learnt that her Father, my Great Grandfather, had died in his sixties of Bowel cancer.
So I guess ‘Bowel Movements’ to my Nanna meant a lot more than just a morning date with the bathroom porcelain.
Bowel(Colon)Cancer is now one of the top 3 cancers in Australia and the USA (the others are lung and breast).
Our bowels are in trouble☹
My Nanna knew back then what the Chinese have known for thousands of years: a daily morning bowel movement really is a sign of good bowel health.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the optimum time of day for bowel movements is between 5am-7am.
TCM wisdom tells us the Large Intestine (another word for ‘bowel’ or ‘colon’) relates to your skin, skin breakouts, cellulite, colds and flu’s, headaches, shoulders and clarity of mind.
If your Large Intestine is clogged up, so is your head!
Your thinking is dulled, foggy and slow.
Plus, you’re more likely to catch any colds that are going around, suffer from headaches and may even have shoulder issues.
The good news is that building strength in your Large Intestine will clear your head, clear your skin, reduce the tendency to ‘catch’ colds and flus, may reduce headaches and shoulder issues as well as make you more positive and happy☺
How do you do this?
By developing strength in the lower belly and lower back.
If you don’t have enough strength here, you’re probably not getting rid of all of your waste.
This excess waste sits in the bowels, builds up and releases toxins into the body.
When you strengthen the lower belly and lower back, your bowels have the strength to ‘push out’ all the waste and eliminate what you don’t need anymore.
NB: it’s your healthy bowels that naturally do the ‘pushing’ for you. Any forcing or straining to push out a ‘bowel movement’ (thanks Nanna!) usually indicates your bowels aren’t as healthy as they could be.
A fringe benefit of strengthening into this area is that love handles disappear and your buttocks get perky again!
Why this fringe benefit?!
It’s because of where the Large Intestine Meridian runs in your body, around the love handles and buttocks.
Autumn is the best time of year to work on the Large Intestine, however, you can strengthen it any time.
Autumn is also the time of year that you may notice those issues (mentioned above) that are associated with the Large Intestine.
In other words, you may be more prone to coughs, colds, blocked head, headaches and shoulder pain around this time of year if your Large Intestine is out of balance.
Remember, the job of your Large Intestine is to eliminate your waste.
When you’re able to do this efficiently, you feel and look lighter in the body AND in the mind.
Looking to try some Japanese Yoga that’ll help you make friends with your Large Intestine again?
Take a look at my Youtube Channel here for some quick and easy Japanese Yoga poses!