- Gordon Dumoulin
Hottest time of the year... perfect for 冬病夏治, “winter disease, summer cure”
𝗦𝗮𝗻𝗳𝘂 三伏, 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗵𝗼𝘁𝘁𝗲𝘀𝘁 𝘁𝗶𝗺𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘆𝗲𝗮𝗿..... 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘧𝘦𝘤𝘵 𝘧𝘰𝘳 ‘𝘸𝘪𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘳 𝘥𝘪𝘴𝘦𝘢𝘴𝘦, 𝘴𝘶𝘮𝘮𝘦𝘳 𝘤𝘶𝘳𝘦’
China is in the middle of Sanfu 三伏 according the 𝗖𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗲𝘀𝗲 𝗹𝘂𝗻𝗶𝘀𝗼𝗹𝗮𝗿 𝗰𝗮𝗹𝗲𝗻𝗱𝗮𝗿, a 30-40 days period of time from mid of July to mid of August, marking the hottest time of the year. This year Sanfu started at July 11, 2021 and the period is divided into three phases Toufu (头伏, July 11, 2021), Zhongfu (中伏, July 21, 2021) and Mofu (末伏, August 10, 2021).
Sanfu is characterized by typical foods and a calming lifestyle 𝗮𝗱𝗮𝗽𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗯𝗼𝗱𝘆 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗵𝗲𝗮𝘁. Popular health foods during Sanfu are bitter melons, cucumbers, black wood ear fungus, sour plum juice, ginger tea, green mung bean dessert or duck soup. Noodles and egg pancakes are traditional foods marking the different phase times.
It is recommended not to exercise rigorously in the heat but take easy walks in the green park shades or a dance in the cool mornings and evenings, and practice mind calming activities such as calligraphy, meditation or fishing.
Sanfu is also considered the 𝗼𝗽𝘁𝗶𝗺𝘂𝗺 𝗽𝗲𝗿𝗶𝗼𝗱 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗺𝗲𝘁𝗮𝗯𝗼𝗹𝗶𝘀𝗺 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗿𝗲𝗮𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗽𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝘂𝗽𝗰𝗼𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘄𝗶𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗶𝗹𝗹𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀𝗲𝘀 such as coughs, asthmas or arthritis. Sanfutie (三伏贴) are medicinal herbal paste patches which people can get in hospitals during the period of Sanfu to stick on specific body parts preparing immunity and building up strength for upcoming winter.
This ancient 𝗧𝗿𝗮𝗱𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝗮𝗹 𝗖𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗲𝘀𝗲 𝗠𝗲𝗱𝗶𝗰𝗶𝗻𝗲 practice has first been recorded more than 2,000 years ago and has been very popular in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and still a standard medicinal practice for many people today, even gaining popularity over the years. It is based on the principle 冬病夏治, “𝘄𝗶𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗱𝗶𝘀𝗲𝗮𝘀𝗲, 𝘀𝘂𝗺𝗺𝗲𝗿 𝗰𝘂𝗿𝗲”.
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