Serving real food, for the health of it: food as thy medicine

May 15, 2024

Gluten Free – Gluten Free Available – Vegetarian – Spicy – Hormone & Antibiotic Free – From Scratch

Food as Thy Medicine

Food has always been a powerful medicine. In a society that looks to big pharma to cure its illnesses, it’s difficult to see how food can play a role. The truth is, using food as medicine is a long time practice.

The healing properties of foods can be a complex understanding because of the extensive information that is available. As such, it is often hard to know where to begin.

That’s why we always defer to Eastern medicine. Eastern medicine dates back thousands of years and has practiced using food as medicine for just as long. 

It’s All About You

Eastern medicine is a unique practice as it focuses on the individual. There is no one answer that suits everyone. It all depends on you!

There are numerous factors that determine how you should use food to heal disease and improve health. It is a highly complex yet wildly effective method to use, if you take the time to understand it. To understand Eastern medicine is to understand how those numerous factors are mutually reliant on each other.

Are You More Yin or More Yang?

Everyone has both their yins (cold energies) and their yangs (hot energies). However, it is possible to lean more yin or lean more yang. As Epoch Times states, “Yin and yang are fluid and constantly changing depending on a multitude of factors, but we all have an intrinsic “nature” tending to one or the other. In the context of food, this is significant. Foods also have a thermal nature. Some foods are warming, some are cooling, and others are neutral.

Here are some general rules that help to explain the thermal nature of foods:

  • Plants that take longer to grow are more warming than foods that grow more quickly.
  • Foods fertilized with chemicals, which causes them to grow more quickly, are considered more cooling in nature. These include most commercial fruits and vegetables.
  • Raw food is more cooling than cooked food.
  • Many types of meat are warming, whereas seafood is generally considered more cooling.
  • Blue, green, or purple foods are often cooler than similar red, orange, or yellow foods.
  • Cooking foods at a lower heat for a longer time is considered more warming than foods cooked for a short time using high heat.
  • Processes such as fermenting and sprouting cause foods to be cooler in temperature.

Of all the ways that we manipulate foods, the most important is the method of cooking. Different cooking methods can change the thermal temperature of our foods. Cooking foods (instead of eating them raw) means that they’re more easily broken down and assimilated. If the cooking time is short, few nutrients are lost, and the body more easily uses the ones that remain.”

Too Much Heat?

An internal imbalance of cold and heat is what can cause disease, according to Chinese medicine. 

Some symptoms of heat in the body include:

  • Feeling overheated
  • A flushed face
  • Nosebleeds and various sores
  • High blood pressure
  • Having a high pulse
  • And more

How to Take the Heat off

When our internal balance is off and is too hot, there are several things we can do to help reinstate that balance.

  • Eat cooling foods like citrus, bananas, lettuce, green vegetables and soy milk just to name a few
  • Slow down and rest
  • Release heat by expressing your emotions – don’t bottle it up, cooling the body down
  • Cut back on your meat intake and meat can be very heating

A Little Chilly?

Lacking in the physical activity department? Is your diet heavy with raw foods? If so, chances are your internal imbalance is leaning to the cold side.

Some signs and symptoms of cold in the body include:

  • Having the chills
  • Feeling stiff
  • Desiring warmth and comfort food
  • Loose diarrhea
  • And more

Warm It Up

When your imbalance is leaning to the cold side, warming up your diet is a sure fire way to get your balance back intact.

A list of heating foods include:

  • Shellfish such as mussels
  • Chicken, lamb or beef
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Root vegetables
  • Beans

Dieting the Eastern medicine way may seem like a simple concept but at its core, it is quite complex. As such, there are many factors to take into consideration when deciding to transition to a food as medicine lifestyle. First and foremost we must always listen to our body and be self aware.