In my last post, I shared an Acupressure Point that I found personally useful during panic attacks, palpitations and shortness of breath that I suffered just after I had children 16 years ago. Even though they are teenagers and way more stressful now, I have learned and used many different tools to balance my body so that the stress hormones of cortisol and adrenaline don’t flood my body and fry my mind.

I’m grateful for the Shiatsu work I do, which uses the 5element system of Traditional Chinese Medicine to interpret symptoms and treat the body using acupressure points, meridian stretches and dietary advice. I love having a toolkit of different techniques with which to balance the body. Here I share a simple recipe that helps to calm the mind and bring the heart home, aiding sleep and relaxation.

During the 1990s when I ran an environmental awareness and coaching agency I thought I had to think of everything. I felt that if I wasn’t on top of all my work, it would fall apart. My mind often wouldn’t let me sleep. It wouldn’t turn off. I spent hours,  instead of sleeping, I would run through future scenarios and presentations. Irrationally my mind thought it could control outcomes, if I thought through of them all, especially in the middle of the night. It was exhausting, physically and mentally.

It was at this time I was embarking on my Shiatsu journey when my teacher introduced me to the power of lettuce as a natural sedative, it really worked. I would drink the tea in the early evening and I would find that my sleep was better. If I woke in the night I would take a shot of pre-prepared Lettuce Juice in the fridge and I’d go straight back to sleep.

From a Chinese Medicine perspective, Lettuce has a bitter flavour and so benefits the heart. The heart is said to be where our Shen, our consciousness, our spirit lives. so eating foods with this flavour such as herbs, radish, beetroot, chicory, endive, and pomegranate will help heart function and provide a home in which the Shen spirit can settle. Helping with insomnia, heart palpitations, anxiety, overthinking and restlessness of the mind.  For more foods check out previous Heart Health post

It all sounds very poetic but believe me it works. Lettuce contains a chemical called lactucarium which is the white milky substance you see when you break the leaf along the stem. As opposed to opioids this substance has no harmful side effects. Try and see for yourself.


Recipe is taken from the Holistic Cookbook – Good Food: Better Sex

Lettuce Tea Tonic – pg 235

  • 5-6 leaves of romaine or butterhead lettuce
  • 1 Litre of water

Pour a litre of boiling water over the leaves of a head of Romaine or Butterhead lettuce, simmer in a pan with the lid on at a low temperature for ten minutes, strain and drink. It’s a very refreshing tasting tea whilst being able to physically relax the body, relieving fullness in the chest and tightness in the mind.

Lettuce Juice – pg 235

Lettuce is also a great sexual tonic, calming the nerves, reducing over-excitement which can lead to premature ejaculation.  If you like you can add Chiocry to the mix.  This amazingly super bitter endive lettuce contains inulin which is used to reduce acidity in the body and help with conditions such as acid reflux, indigestion and heartburn

1 head of chicory or romaine lettuce

Pass the lettuce through a juicer.  Take a shot, approx 75ml of this every night and every morning

Chinese Medicine is over 4000 years old and the 5elements give a system where you can understand your symptoms and the cause of them. If you would like to find out more you can read all about the system in Shiatsu & the Art of Conscious Cooking or Good Food: Better Sex. This lists all the five elements, their flavours, times of the year, emotions, ailments and offers recipes plus acupressure points to transform them.

If you’d like more Chinese Medicine Wisdom – Buy the books, packed full of Food Energetics, Acupressure Points and Energy Exercises – simply click the picture and see more inside.

Now is the time to make the change to your diet and health
I can teach you how to understand your body and take control of all areas of your health.

Courses include: 2 Online Consultations PLUS Copy of Conscious Cookbook sent straight to your door
PLUS 30 Days / 30 Videos – bitesize cookery programs, Chi-Gong exercises, and self-shiatsu acupressure points in your own home.

Choose from:

  1. Stopping Sweet Cravings
  2. Sexy Savvy Menopause
  3. Reduce Pain in Fibromyalgia  and Chronic Fatigue
  4. Good Food: Better Health

Watch the video to find out more at