Dr. Kimberly Hindman Naturopathic Physician ~ Licensed Acupuncturist 1820 SW Vermont, Suite C Portland, OR 97219 (503) 784-1027 EATING FOR THE SEASONS SPRING: New beginning Chinese Organ Systems: liver and gallbladder Chinese Element: Wood A healthy liver establishes smooth and soothing flow of energy through entire body and mind. Eat less or fast to cleanse body of fats and heavy foods of winter Diet should be the lightest of the year and contain foods which emphasize the yang, ascending, and expansive qualities of spring: young plants, fresh greens, sprouts, cereal grasses, raw foods Simple food preparation Use sweet and pungent flavored foods o Pungent: basil, fennel, marjoram, tumeric, cardamom, cumin, ginger, black pepper, horseradish, rosemary, caraway, dill, bay leaf, garlic, onion, watercress, mustard greens o Sweet: grains, legumes, seeds, young beets, carrots, starchy vegetables, minimallyprocessed sugars (honey, stevia root, unrefined cane-juice granules, whole sugar cane, licorice root, barley malt, date sugar, molasses, rice syrup) To move stagnation: beets, taro root, sweet rice, strawberry, peach, cherry, chestnut, pine nut, cabbage, turnip root, kohlrabi, cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts, VINEGAR To detoxify the liver: mung beans and sprouts, celery, seaweed, lettuce, cucumber, watercress, tofu, millet, plum, mushrooms, rhubarb root, radish, daikon radish Limit salty foods, which have a sinking energy, and heavy/fatty foods, which clog the liver SUMMER: Luxurious Growth Chinese Organ Systems: Heart and Small Intestine Chinese Element: Fire Heart not only regulates blood circulation but also controls consciousness, spirit, sleep, memory, and houses the mind. A calm heart will bring clarity and peace to the entire body. Avoid highly warming substances: coffee, tobacco, alcohol Bitter foods cleanse the physical heart and arteries, cool the heart, and create a centering action in the body. Magnesium, especially in green foods, is healing to the physical and emotional heart. Calm the mind: whole wheat, brown rice, oats, mushrooms, high silica foods (barley, cucumber, celery, lettuce), mulberries, lemon, schisandra berries, jujube seeds, dill, basil, chamomile, catnip, scullcap, valerian Cool the heart: fresh wheat germ, wheat berries, mung beans LATE SUMMER: Interchange of All Seasons Chinese Organ Systems: Spleen and Stomach Chinese Element: Earth The spleen-pancreas and stomach are responsible for digestion and distribution of food and nutrients. Prepare food simply with a minimum of seasonings and mild taste Moderate cooking time and temperature Chew food well and eat small, frequent meals Choose foods that are harmonizing and represent the center: mildly sweet foods, yellow or golden foods, round foods; millet, corn, carrots, cabbage, garbanzo beans, soybeans, squash, potatoes, string beans, yams, tofu, sweet potatoes, sweet rice, rice, amaranth, peas, chestnuts, filberts, apricots, cantaloupe Tonify spleen-pancreas: o Grains: well-cooked rice, oats, spelt, sweet rice o carbohydrate-rich vegetables: winter squash, carrot, rutabaga, parsnip, turnip, garbanzo beans, black beans, peas, sweet potato, yam, pumpkin o pungent vegetables and spices: onion, leek, black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, fennel, garlic, nutmeg o sweet foods: rice syrup, barely malt, molasses, cherry, dates If there is deficiency, avoid excessive amounts of raw and cooling foods, large meals, rich foods, of mucus-forming foods FALL: Season of Harvest Chinese Organ Systems: Lung and Large Intestine Chinese Element: Metal Lungs receive the vital qi of the air and mix with the qi extracted from the food to distribute qi over the body. Choose more astringent foods to represent the contracting, inward motion of nature Heartier foods and flavors Cooking methods should use more focused preparation to supply the greater energy needed in a cooler season. Cook with less water, at lower heat, for longer periods of time to internalize your focus during cooking. Stimulate the appetite with smells- baking, sautéing Add more sour flavored foods to focus the scattered energy of summer: sourdough bread, sauerkraut, olives, pickles, leeks, aduki beans, salt plums, rose hip tea, vinegar, cheese, yogurt, lemons, limes, grapefruit, sour apples/plums/grapes Pungent foods to clear toxins: hot peppers, chilies, onions, garlic, turnip, ginger, horseradish, cabbage, radish, daikon radish Clear old mucus deposits and line surfaces with clean, moist coat: seaweeds, marshmallow root, flaxseed, fenugreek Protect surface/boost immunity (foods rich in Vitamin A): carrot, winter squash, pumpkin, broccoli, parsley, kale, turnip and mustard greens, watercress, wheat or barley grass, algaes, mullein leaf, nettles Fiber to cleanse the colon: apples, cherries, carrots, oats Start to add bitter and salty foods to move energy inward and downward WINTER: End of All Seasons, Time for Rest Chinese Organ Systems: Kidney and Bladder Chinese Element: Water Kidneys rule water metabolism, govern sexual and reproductive function, provide warmth and energy, and serve as the root and foundation of the body. Warm hearty soups, whole grains, roasted nuts Cook foods longer, at lower temperatures, and with less water Salty and bitter foods have a sinking/centering quality, which increases the capacity for storage of energy o Salty foods: miso, soy sauce, seaweeds, salt, millet, barley (care not to overuse salt) o Bitter foods: lettuce, watercress, endive, escarole, turnip, celery, asparagus, alfalfa, carrot top, rye oats, quinoa, amaranth, chicory root, burdock root, horsetail, chaparral Fortify the kidneys: dried foods, small dark beans, seaweeds, and steamed winter greens Source: Pitchford, Paul. Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition. Third Edition.
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