Healthy Chinese Nutritional Therapy Tips

Chinese nutritional therapy espouses quite a number of healthy eating habits that anyone can practice in their everyday lives. In Chinese medicine, prevention is a more important aspect to healthy living than treatment (although this doesn’t mean that Chinese medicine does not offer any effective treatment for illness, it does). Chinese nutritional therapy is one very important aspect to disease prevention although some of its guidelines and recommendations may challenge some of your long held notions about healthy eating. However, you should know that this branch of Chinese medicine has been developed, time-tested, and refined for more than 2500 years and if it didn’t work, then it should have been discarded a long time ago. The fact that this therapy is still used by millions of people throughout the world suggests that it is effective and worth trying.

Some Healthy Eating Habits Recommendations

1. Avoid overeating – Go easy on your bowels and digestive organs. When you are three quarters (75 percent) full, stop eating. Overeating can cause indigestion since it weakens your abdomen and intestines. It can also cause weight gain, gas, decay, constipation, sluggishness, and bloating.

2. Preferably eat cooked foods – Chinese nutritional therapists usually recommend that meals should be served cooked and warm. Too much consumption of raw fruits and vegetables weakens and cools the digestive system which leads to lack of energy, watery stools, and bloating. In Chinese nutrition, cooking facilitates digestion making it easier to digest and absorb the nutrients in the food. On the other hand, the body needs to spend more energy in digesting and breaking down raw or cold foods. Stir-fry cooking and steaming are appropriate ways of cooking since they cook lightly and quickly preserving the precious nutrients in the food.

3. Avoid cold drinks – As much as possible, avoid drinking cold fluids particularly iced drinks because it severely impairs digestions. The process of digestion requires heat to dissolve and melt the substances you eat and drink. Cold by nature contracts and slows and this means cold foods and cold drinks (the colder, the more worse) such as ice cream, hinder and retard digestion, causing stomach discomfort and pain or an upset stomach. Drinking warm liquids like green tea or warm water is preferred. Warm green tea prepares your digestive system to receive and digest food properly while warm-hot water can help wash out toxins in your body. Ten to twenty minutes before eating, drink a cup of warm green tea. This is especially advised if you’ll be consuming fried foods, meat, or their types of heavy food. Post-prandial green tea drinking also promotes digestion.

4. Chew properly and eat slowly – Chewing food is the start of the digestion process. Eat slowly and before you swallow food, chew them thoroughly so they can get quickly and completely digested. If you eat when you are emotionally troubled or angry, your digestion can be severely affected. Therefore, if you feel angry or emotionally upset allow yourself to calm down before eating or totally skip your meal.

5. Eat at a regular and fixed time – Your body gets used to regular practices and this is true in working, sleeping, waking up, and eating meals. If you want a well-functioning body, good health, and well-being it’s vital that you set and maintain a regular time schedule for working, sleeping, waking up, and eating your meals.

6. Exercise before breakfast – Lose weight by doing a bit exercise before breakfast. As you have been sleeping for eight to twelve hours and have not eaten during that time, your body depends on the reserves of fat in your body for energy. One great exercise you can do after waking up in the morning before breakfast is the Abdominal Lift. This is an easy workout and only requires a couple of minutes to perform. In the Abdominal Lift, you use your stomach muscles to lift your stomach upwards and towards your spine. That position is held for a few seconds and then released slowly and gently. To enhance digestion, absorption, and elimination do this exercise one hour after breakfast or after every meal.

7. Walk outdoors after meals – Anytime you exit a restaurant in China, the crew will thank you for coming then utter the words, “man shou”, which means, “walk slowly”. After a meal, taking a slow pleasant walk outside for about 15 minutes can enhance digestion and food absorption. Using your two hands to rub your stomach (specifically in your umbilicus) in slow circling motions in the direction of your colon also facilitates digestion. You can use this as a remedy or to prevent the rise of digestive conditions. You can do this while slowly walking or while standing still.

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The Health Benefits Of Black Fungus, Bojenmi Tea And Green Tea

Are there vegetables that have the tastes and textures of meat and fish? According to Chinese nutritional therapists there are. One of the more renowned is Chinese Black Fungus which is used as a dietary supplement. It is endowed with vital nutrients that can boost the overall health and fitness of a person. Chinese Black Fungus needs to be washed before it’s used and is usually bought in dried packaged form.

As a Diet Aid

In the fight against weight gain and obesity, Black Fungus can be an important ally. It is a very low caloric food and when boiled has a meat-like taste and texture which makes it especially satisfying. Black Fungus has valuable nutritional contents. It is usually integrated with other dishes in order to ‘enrich’ these dishes, and bulk them up for slimming purposes.

You can buy Black Fungus in Chinese supermarkets and stores. Wash and soak it thoroughly before use.

As a Health Supplement

Western medical science has discovered Black Fungus to help enrich blood and prevent the rise of iron deficiency anemia. It is also known to help modulate blood viscosity by preventing platelet aggregation which leads to low blood-viscosity levels. In TCM or Traditional Chinese Medicine, Black Fungus is used to treat high blood pressure, hemorrhoids, uterine bleeding, anemia, and coronary heart disease. It can be also used to prevent cancer and significantly relieve its symptoms.

Black Fungus is an inexpensive and commonly used food in Chinese cuisine. Because it is full of nutrients like vitamins, fat, protein, iron, and polysaccharides as well as essential trace elements like manganese, selenium, and potassium, all which are essential to the long-term health of the body, Chinese medicine practitioners have been using it as medicinal food for millennia.

The flavor of Black Fungus is bittersweet. It has a meat-like texture and is added to dishes mainly to boost the flavors of the main ingredients.

As a ‘Fat Buster’

Serious dieters can complement their consumption of Black Fungus by drinking Bojenmi Tea or Green tea and other proven Chinese nutrition, weight-loss, and slimming aids.

Green tea benefits your health by promoting digestion, and stimulating the heart. Drinking green tea can help detoxify the body, facilitate weight loss, and promote the metabolism of fat.

People suffering from anemia (including women who lose a lot of during menstruation) should not drink Green Tea as it somewhat prevents the body from assimilating iron. To resolve iron deficiencies, they are encouraged to drink Bojenmi Tea instead.

Bojenmi literally means health maintenance and is known to help lose weight and encourage slimming. It is based on an ancient Ming Dynasty treatment and is made up of a dozen medicinal herbs. Bojenmi tea has a pleasant taste and is a mild laxative. It can help lower cholesterol levels and promote digestion.


Both Green and Bojenmi teas can help cleanse fatty deposits off the internal systems of the body. Green Tea is very inexpensive and it is so efficient in removing fat that Chinese restaurants use it to remove grease from tables.

You can purchase Black Fungus, Green Tea and Bojenmi Tea in Chinese stores and supermarkets. They all possess longevity-inducing, detoxifying, and internal cleansing qualities especially when they’re combined with fitness, health, anti-aging, and dietary regimes.

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The Health And Medicinal Value Of Chinese Foods

Chinese foods are extremely beneficial to health as they are considered to have medicinal value and healing powers and promote longevity. Preparing the Oriental cuisine requires a good deal of experience and knowledge. It uses no milk based ingredients such as cheese, butter, or cream and is cooked with poly unsaturated oils. It also uses meat but to avoid high levels of cholesterol and animal fat, meat is not used in excess. This type of cuisine is called authentic Chinese food, which is usually delectable but still ideal for good health. Chinese food usually includes vegetables, noodles, and rice.

There is also a special way of serving Chinese food. More often than not, you need to slice the food into small cuts before serving, and at the dining table, there are no knives set. It is very important to get the right combination of things like condiments and herbs. The food should be enjoyed and eaten in peace and served in tempting in texture and color. One can select from a wide range of dishes having various nutritional value. Vegetable, beef or chicken are a great combination. You can also serve sesame chicken, broccoli and beef, or cashew beef or chicken in lieu of fried dishes. These servings are extremely nutritious while traditional dishes (such as lo mien) has noodles that are soaked in carbohydrates, fats, and oil and are not good for health.

To avoid carbohydrates and high levels of cholesterol, eat brown rice instead of fried rice. Additives that are oftentimes used in Chinese food such as soy sauce are high in sodium content. We all know that too much intake of sodium is not good for the health and so you may need to avoid using too much soy sauce. You can eat steamed dishes and vegetables that’s been stir fried with no or little oil. Eat a healthy diet comprising of dishes that are vegetable-based along with steamed rice and some sauces to help lessen fat calories.

In conclusion, a healthy Chinese food is one that’s low in salt, and filled with lots of vegetables like snow peas. You restaurant of choice will determine the quality of food you eat. The manager or the waiter can also assist you with the kind of dishes sold and their nutritional value. So, choosing the right things to eat and the right place to eat are two very important aspects in the search for good health and well-being.

Dr. Vickery is a licensed acupuncturist in Tarzana, CA., and the founder and clinical director of Vickery Health and Wellness.