Way Too Hot! Sifu’s Tips for Staying Cool!
Sifu’s tips for when you are Too Hot!
Recently we did a podcast “How Hot are You?” about the sources of our body’s warmth. If we ask, “How Hot are You?” today, in California, the answer is “Way TOO HOT!” so how can you stay cool, baby?
Well My first recommendation is:
Go to the Winter Melon Tea Shop in Tainan, Taiwan. They make a winter melon tea that is highly effective in reducing your internal body temperature and it tastes great. They have it down cold how to make this wonderful beverage! The fifth generation continues a family tradition over 100 years old. With a legacy method, an unmodified traditional recipe, and natural ingredients this place is packed with customers on hot days. I would not advise visiting Taiwan during the summer heat. Wow, it is brutal. We went for a beautiful wedding and I certainly had many moments of truly feeling the heat. This drink became my go to friend. One of these, and they are easy to drink with a sweet flavor, and I instantly felt better, all over and evenly cooler on the inside without the shock of cold water. For the record, I did drink iced drinks in this heat, mostly water or iced green tea, even though My loving Taiwanese wife, Rachel, dutifully tried to stop me.
“Rachel Notes: Winter melon clears the lungs, eliminate phlegm, quenches thirst.”
If you go, be sure to bring one back for me. Or a condensed brick to be rehydrated at savored.
Hibiscus Flower Tea – Luo River Goddess Tea – Hibiscus flowers are not only beautiful but also make a wonderful cooling tea. Hibiscus Tea can be made and then cooled if you desire. The color is vibrant, and the tea is flavorful. You can also mix it with other ingredients or sweeten it.
Chrysanthemum Flower Tea – Chrysanthemum Tea also has a great cooling effect. The flavor of this depends enormously on the quality of the flowers used. Good quality Chrysanthemum Tea has a sweet, light, dry flavor. This tea not only has a great cooling effect, but also benefits your Liver in traditional medicine.
Dragon Well Green Tea – Dragon Well Tea consists of early spring leaves that are tender and not yet full sized. Dragon Well Tea is light green and naturally sweet. The key to this type of tea is to use water that is not at a full boil. Pouring the water on the leaves when it first bubbles is the right time. If the water is too hot, the tea is bitter. You can make this tea and then cool it. Dragon Well Tea tastes great cold too. A great cooling tea, it is a bit alkaline, and eating a food or a sweet with it is advised to protect your stomach. Classically, this tea comes from the Dragon Well region. This area features a lake shaped like a dragon with a famous Spring feeding the lake. This area is famous for the quality for the quality of spring water, the presence of high-grade iron ore, deposits of natural gas, and high-quality clay. These elements combined to make this area famous for three things, high quality swords, teapots, and tea. The high-grade ore was the first requirement to make great swords. Second, the ancient Chinese looked for natural gas that they could tap into to fire up their forges. Ideally, these forges and smithies were placed next to a strong flowing natural stream that they could use to power their trip hammers for forging with water wheels. This was the ideal situation for creating swords and metal objects of all types. This technology was developed much earlier in China than in Europe. The last piece is not as obvious and that is the clay. High quality clay is required to temper the edges of the swords properly. This led to potters situating next to swordsmiths and assisting with the tempering process. Add a region also naturally suited to tea cultivation, and pretty soon, you have a lot of teahouses full of well-armed martial artists drinking tea and….
Eight Treasure Tea – This tea contains 8 ingredients and is great for surviving the heat while practicing martials or eating Sichuan cuisine…
Spearmint or Peppermint Tea – This is the classic tea drunk throughout North Africa and the Middle East. In many cases, even during the heat is served warm, and delivers a great cooling effect. Add honey too taste! These teas are also great for relieving the effects of wind and aiding digestion.
Cooling Wrists and Foreheads – Quick, effective cooling of your entire body can be achieved by cooling your wrists and forehead. Our wrists have lots of blood circulation. Cooling them in cool water or with cold compresses, even damp napkins and continuing to reapply with fresh cool water can rapidly pull a lot of heat out your body. Washing your hands and wrists in cold water works well too!
Cooling Showers – Too hot!? Take a quick shower and cool off. Cooling your armpits reduces interior body temperature quickly. Avoid cooling the back directly behind your heart too quickly.
Another traditional method used by qigong practitioners in southern China is the 6 or 8 Healing breaths. The number varies by teacher or style. These breaths are used to draw heat from each organ by making different specific sounds. These breathing techniques are used to prevent or recover form overheating during martial training. In southern China it gets dangerously hot in the summer. Early morning practice is the rule. Most southern systems of Gong Fu contain cooling sounds in their forms for this reason.
Said in a gravelly voice: “When the going gets Tough, the Tough get Cool!”
Keep your training up but stay mindful of your internal body temperature and use these tools to cope with the heat.
Stay Healthy and Be Awesome!
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