“First, modify the patient’s diet and lifestyle and only then, if these do not effect a cure, treat with medicinals and acupuncture.”
– Sun Simiao (581-682 A.D.)
chinese MEDICINE Food therapy
Dietary therapy has always served as an integral pillar within the Chinese medical system as both a form of health cultivation, as well as a remedial system in treating dysfunction. It is through the interface of diet, perhaps more than any other, where the individual has the most power and control to steer the ship of their own health.
Classical Chinese dietary therapy focuses primarily on the energetic properties of foods (such as their temperature, flavour, colour, directionality, and organ affinity) and how such foods interact with one’s individual constitution and current internal terrain. Chinese dietary therapy does not require the consumption of any specific Chinese foods or dishes; but rather provides a framework to understand the energetic dynamics of foods and how they interact with our bodies (and how the same food could be therapeutic for some, but detrimental to others). In this way, you can follow Chinese dietary therapy principles whether you live in Beijing, Tokyo, Paris, or Melbourne.
Chinese dietary therapy encapsulates a myriad of other considerations outside of just food itself. Chinese dietetics also stresses the importance of not just what we eat (and drink); but how we eat, when we eat, where we eat, and why we eat. It incorporates the role of the seasons, the climate, life circumstances, and cooking methods. All of these considerations are addressed on an individual basis for a specific person at a specific point in time.