In Chinese Medicine Winter is the season relating to the Water element and the Kidneys. Winter is the time of year where everything slows down. Water freezes and becomes ice. The stillness of ice represents this season. Animals hibernate and seeds lay dormant. In Winter we are advised to go to bed early and slow down our activity to preserve our resources.
In terms of diet Winter is a good time for salty and bitter foods which aid the bodies capacity for storage. Examples of bitter foods are oats, rye, carrot top and quinoa. Seaweed, millet and barley are salty foods. It is advisable to avoid salads at this time of year as they are cooling in nature.
Hicks, Hicks and Mole, 2004, Five Element Constitutional Acupuncture, Churchill Livingstone