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The Flavor And Thermal Nature Of Food In Chinese Medicine

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According to Chinese medicine in King of Prussia, a well balanced diet consists of about 20 percent of each of the following five flavors or tastes: salty, spicy, bitter, sour, and sweet. The standard American diet is imbalanced with way too many sweet and salty tastes. Why is this important, you may ask? Well, in Chinese medicine, the health of a person is based on achieving harmony, moderation, and balance in all facets of an individual’s health and well-being. As a society, we often ignore and overlook our choices of food in the maintenance of our health. Chinese medicine combines dietary and food principles to maintain or restore health.

In Chinese medicine, both foods and herbs are classified based on their innate qualities. In choosing a food or herb to address a specific condition, two of the most common standards that are considered are their sensory and thermal qualities. The categorization of foods by temperature in Chinese medicine is assessed in how the way the food is prepared and in the thermal nature of the food itself. This thermal nature of food, which can be cold, cool, hot, warm, or neutral, indicates the influence a specific food has on the body when taken in. This shows how the way we use food as a form of thermal treatment to either cool or warm a certain part of the body in order to reverse a specific condition.

In Chinese medicine, the Five Tastes is one way of categorizing food. The five tastes, in the same way as food temperatures, refer to the type of energy an herb or food during the act of ingestion and in the process of digestion. Each taste has an energetic association and relationship to a specific internal organ. This produces another level of personalization and precision in the choosing of herbs and foods to treat a person with a certain condition.

The job of a Chinese medicine practitioner is to evaluate your symptoms, health, and dietary habits that can help him come up with a proper diagnosis. Dietary prescriptions are often given to support and augment your treatment plan.

Written by Valerie

February 28th, 2018 at 9:57 am