What is Dietary Therapy?
Food is Medicine
At the core of Chinese Medicine lies the fundamental tenets of well-being: harmony, balance, and good circulation. Dietary Therapy is the conscious use of foods and herbs for the promotion and maintenance of balance and well-being throughout the functional systems of the body: all digestive, eliminative, circulatory, respiratory, reproductive and hormonal-related processes. Circulation of Qi, or life force, is paramount in the quality of our health and our aging process.
Each of us has a particular constitution. This is derived from, firstly, our parents (genetics), and secondly, our lifestyle. Knowing our genetic predispositions, we can choose foods wisely, based on understanding the benefits of foods as it’s associated with flavor, thermal temperature, energetic qualities and functional effects. For example, if someone exhibits signs of stagnation and heat, the consumption of cooling, sedating and bitter foods might drain the heat and bring balance to that person’s body and nervous system.
The Five Elements Theory is a simple, yet profound system used to understand the relational qualities of the major organs in our bodies, as understood in TCM : lungs, heart, spleen/pancreas, liver, small and large intestines, gallbladder, urinary bladder and stomach. These organs have characteristic qualities and specific associations with the physical body (and parts thereof), sense organs, cardinal directions, emotions, flavors, colors and more.
Photo By Melinda DiOrio