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What to Expect in 2019: The Year of the Pig

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Lunar New Year and represents the energetic start of the year, so Happy New Year again! For years now, I’ve been putting out an analysis of the year based on ancient Chinese energetics, because the energy of each year is different, and affects us all. I’ve observed these energetics for many years, reflected in the weather, health, the types of illnesses I see patients come in with, etc. I’ve found it to be fairly accurate, and the people who read my analysis keep telling me they like it, so I keep doing it… Some people even start asking me months in advance what the next year will be like!

By having the information at the start of the year, we know what’s in store and how to manage our eating and lifestyle to stay in good health during the year. There’s also some other information, because the energy of the year affects everything. Here’s my analysis of this year, the Year of the Pig. Enjoy!

Predictions for The Year of the Pig

February 5th was Lunar New Year, and the energetic start of Spring. Spring is the start of the new energetic cycle and new growth for the year.

The Western new year of January 1st was established by Julius Caesar to correct errors in the mathematical calculation of the year. A year is actually 365 days and some hours long. Before that, there were errors in the calendar, so it was arbitrarily decided to make January 1st the start of the year. It has nothing to do with the actual energetics of nature, which is what we follow in Chinese Medicine in order to stay in harmony with the seasons and in good health.

Every year is either Yin or Yang, and it alternates every year. Yin and Yang are energetic opposites. Last year was a Yang year, so this year is a Yin year. Yin is the cooling, calming, moistening, restful, and more feminine energy. (Yang is the opposite.)

Every year, we have the energy of Heaven (as in “the heavens” or sky, not in any religious sense) and the energy of Earth (as in the planet Earth). Each has its own energy for the year, which is one of the five elemental forms of energy. This year, the Heaven energy is Yin Earth, and the Earth energy is the Pig, also sometimes called the Boar. The Pig represents Yin Water. So our elemental energies for the year are Yin Earth and Yin Water.

Here’s what we can expect this year based on the energetics of the Earth Pig:


When you think about mixing Earth and Water, you get a pretty good idea of what’s in store this year: wet, damp, mud. Yin Earth by nature is more damp than Yang Earth, which is more dry. Add water to that, and you get even more damp Earth. Think mud. Lots and lots of mud. Areas that have had fire damage in the last few years, and/or are prone to mudslides are at risk this year.

Flooding could be a big problem this year, because the the Water energy brings more actual water, and the earth is too soggy to dam it up and hold it in. If you live in an area at risk for mudslides and/or flooding, now is the time to take precautions and prepare in advance.

As for the weather this year, the overall Yin energy of the year makes it more cool and potentially damp. Add to that the Water energy, which represents actual water, but also more dampness. Yin water is more like “clouds and dew” as the ancient books say, rather than bodies of water like lakes, rivers, and oceans, which would be Yang Water. When water is in the form of clouds and dew, you get humidity.

The temperature nature of Water is cold, so expect cooler weather, with higher humidity, and more rain than usual, because, well, it’s water.

When we consider the Yin Earth energy, we’ve already seen that it will be wet, muddy earth. The nature of Earth itself is dampness. Earth years always bring more rain. So we’ve pretty much got lots of damp and wet from all sides this year, with a dose of cold thrown in from the Yin Water energy. The weather forecasters will most likely call it an El Nino year. The atmospheric conditions will probably show up to create that, as the Heaven and Earth energies are what set up those conditions.

Mold will likely be an issue this year, since the conditions will be perfect for mold to grow. Watch out for leaks in houses, because mold could show up very easily. If you have a mold problem already, it’s only going to get worse this year, so it’s wise to take care of it as soon as possible. Dehumidifiers may be a good idea.


The biggest issue this year will be with cold and dampness in the body. Colds and flus will have lots of mucus, as opposed to lingering dry coughs.

There will be more digestive issues, especially involving dampness, like gas, bloating, easy weight gain, and loose stools. Avoid eating too many damp foods this year. Damp foods are greasy, fried, oily, and dairy products (not eggs – eggs are not damp, so they’re fine to eat, but they always get lumped in with dairy). Eating damp foods will cause digestive issues easily this year because of all the dampness of the year.

As extra weight is considered dampness in Chinese Medicine, it will be easier for people with weak digestion or prone to weight gain to pack it on this year. For these people, this is a year to really watch the diet and avoid those damp foods.

Avoid too many cold, raw foods, because they can damage the digestion, especially in cold weather. Eat more cooked, warm foods, especially when it’s cold. It a good year to use a bit more ginger and garlic in cooking, since they help warm the digestive system and get rid of dampness. Don’t use too much ginger or garlic if you run too hot or have acid reflux. Everything is about finding the balance, so experiment and find the right amount for you.

Because of the cold weather, people who run cold may have a harder time. Make sure to dress warm in cold weather and avoid getting chilled. Eating more ginger and/or garlic can help. On the other hand, people who tend to run hot will probably have an easier time this year.

Also watch out for mold. Mold can cause a lot of health problems. Because of the weather, there will be more mold and things like fungus and candida. If you think about what happens to a wet, soggy garden and what grows in those conditions, those are the sorts of things that can grow in the body this year with the right conditions.

Depression may be an issue this year for some people. Fire is weak this year, and its emotion is Joy. Combine that with lots of clouds, rain and cold, and people may be more prone to depression. It’s a good year to get out in the sun when you can, and pay attention to managing moods. It may help to do things that bring you joy, to help balance the weakness in the Fire energy this year.


Earth and Water industries should benefit this year, so it should be another good year for real estate, as long as there aren’t issues with flooding, landslides, mud, etc. Plumbers are probably going to have a very good year. Also, shipping, and anything having to do with water or earth.

Wisdom is associated with Water, so businesses associated with learning and wisdom should do well.

Earth businesses that work with earth, like excavating, pottery, ceramics should have a good year. Also farming, as long as crops don’t get too wet.

Fire represents computers, electricity, technology and the stock market. Because the Fire energy is weak this year, those industries will most likely be weaker.


It should be another interesting year. Remember all the mud we’re going to have? Expect mudslinging.

On the other hand, things should (hopefully) calm down a bit. It’s a Yin year, and Water and Earth are both Yin, so it should be a more mellow year. We’ve had several years of Fire and then Metal energy that were fiery and passionate, and then sharp and cutting due to the metal.

I don’t know if much progress will be made, because it’s such a Yin year and Earth, Water and mud have a tendency to just sit there in a mud puddle. And mud is cloudy, not clear, so things may seem muddy or cloudy and may not be their most clear this year.

Water brings wisdom and is flexible and always finds a way to to go where it wants. Earth energy brings harmony and trust. The energy will be there this year for things to settle down, become more harmonious and allow wisdom to prevail. Expect mudslinging, but overall, more calm.

The Pig is the last animal in the Chinese Zodiac of 12 animals. Being the last animal, it’s the end of a 12 year cycle. (The full cycle is 60 years. It’s not the end of the full 60 year cycle – that’s two more cycles, or 24 years, away.) The end of the cycle represents completion of things you’ve been working on during this cycle. It’s like the winter season during a year. It’s the time to rest and recharge. Remember that it’s a very Yin year, so follow the energy and be more Yin, mellow and rest more this year.

And just like winter during the year, which is Water time, it’s a good time to use the wisdom that Water brings and plan for the start of the next cycle. What do you want this next phase of your life to be like? This is the year to think, evaluate, and make plans for next year and the start of the next cycle.

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