Why I love Chinese Medicine.
We absolutely love this guest post by Wellspring School faculty member Jennie King, who will be teaching the very first class in our next Wholistic Nutrition professional certification program. The program is starting February 7 & 8.
If you are compelled to join and take the first step toward a fulfilling career in wholistic health, or toward integrating a new flavor into your practice, get your application in by January 23!
I entered acupuncture school because I fell in love with the snippets of Chinese Medicine theory I picked up every time I received acupuncture. I love metaphors, especially those dealing with the elements; Earth, Metal, Water, Wood, and Fire. I couldn’t image going through life without that information and lens with which to see the world.
Chinese Medicine has many limbs with acupuncture being only one of them. Nutrition is another important branch. In fact, it is a key component because it is related to the Earth element, which Chinese Medicine considers to be the foundation for all of the precious substances in the body; Qi, Blood, and Body fluids. Proper nutrition supports our organ systems and allows us to protect the Essence we were born with.
In Chinese Medicine we go beyond the simple distinction between good and bad foods, or good and bad diets. Nor does it allow a once size fits all prescription. It is practical and esoteric at the same time. Nutrition becomes more of a dance with an individual’s constitution and the seasons. Foods have certain properties that tell us how they work energetically with the body. Two of the properties are temperature (cold to hot) and flavor (pungent, bitter, sweet, sour, bland and salty).
For example, you would choose ginger versus mint tea for different types of the common cold. Ginger and green onion are pungent and warming, and a traditional ginger and green onion tea is often prescribed for a cold with the chills and body aches.
If you had a hot type of cold characterized by a sore throat and fever, you would choose cooling herbs like forysythia or mint. Seasonally, eating watermelon, a cool food, in the summer prevents you from becoming overheated, while enjoying lamb stew, a hot food, at the solstice brings warmth in the coldest part of the year.
If you tend towards a warmer constitution but would like to eat that hot lamb, you would pair it with yoghurt and mint, which are cooling. See how much fun this is?
I love that we each have an innate wisdom that works for us individually. To take the time to develop the relationship with ourselves, and the foods we eat, creates a richer experience for something that we do multiple times per day.
Why not learn how to work with and bring ourselves into balance through the original medicine, food.