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  • Writer's pictureAkari

Cold Head, Warm Feet

Pronounced as "Zu Kan Soku Netsu" in Japanese.

This is a Japanese idiom for healthy living - Literal meaning is “head cold, feet hot” - this really is a wise word for an optimal health practice especially in the colder months.


When your head is cool while your feet are kept warm, your body operates better.

Heat raises, so our head easily gets “heated”. You know that when you are angry or nervous etc. we say you get heated and someone will tell you to “cool down”. It’s not only about the temperature, but also the performance/function as well, and they go hand in hand. When the head is overheated, it’s like the CPU in the computer gets overheated and started to malfunction. There’s no difference in our “CPU” = brain!

On the other hand, we want to keep our feet warm, especially for those who have wombs and/or menstruating.

We have meridians on our feet that connect with the womb and abdomen, thus we have many acupoints for gynaecological (or digestive) concerns on or around feet and ankles. We even use heat lamps and/or moxa to warm up those points during the acupuncture sessions when we work on those issues.

But if the feet are kept cold outside the treatment room, we are undoing all the efforts we are making in our treatment room. You spend way more time outside the treatment room! What you do when on your own has a significant impact on your health and treatment outcomes. Remember, you are a part of the treatment. So, please;

  • Wear slippers

  • Keep socks on at all times

  • Cover your ankles, and

  • Do foot soaks regularly

  • Set-up a Kotatsu table (if you have one)

Warming up the feet also “pulls” down the heat from the head to calm you down and bring clarity.

I recall that when I was a young student, I had a small heater by my feet underneath my studying desk and studied in a slightly cooler room for this reason.

This practice is helpful for almost everyone, but especially for those who have any of the following. Please follow the cool head, warm feet practice to mitigate the symptoms and/or to make your TCM/acupuncture treatments more effective;

  • Anxiety

  • Foggy mind

  • Scattered mind/poor concentration

  • Anger/outburst tendency

  • Insomnia

  • Cold hands and feet

  • Low back pain

  • bloating

  • Loose stools

  • Frequent urination

  • Menstrual cramps and irregular menstruation

  • Fertility challenges and more

In Health,


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