Thursday, November 26, 2015

The Yin and Yang of Food (4)

Veg Pyramid which is based on
Yin and Yang balance
In modern nutritional science,
people talk about balancing their diet
by calculating the amount of
carbohydrates, proteins, fats,
minerals, vitamins, fibres and water intake.

While such calculations are scientifically founded,
it's not comprehensive enough
to offer insight into the mutual interaction
among the nutrients.

In Yin and Yang perspectives,
foods are understood
in term of their roles and functions.

From there, we know what foods
are mutually antagonistic or synergistic
(opposing behavior or supportive behavior)
and therefore categorized into Yin and Yang.

In The Veg School's advance course
"Life Force Management",
we talk about two opposing functions of foods:

1. Life Force Building (a.k.a. tonic)
~ foods that directly enhance the coordination of life,
involving the inward aggregation of energies, in general.
~ We could label these foods being Yang,
in the specific context of life coordination.
~ Generally, root, underground stem and seed parts of plants
offers such a function,
due to their life sustaining roles in the plant.

2. Interference Elimination (a.k.a. detoxifying)
~ foods that defend the sustaining of life from being interfered,
involving the outward expulsion of energies, in general.
~ We could label these foods being Yin,
in the same context of life coordination.
~ General, above-ground stem, leaf, flower and fruit parts of plants
offers such a function,
due to their life long combat against heat, UV, germs and pests.

In normal/ideal situation,
we should take foods with equal strength of
Life Force Building and
Interference Elimination functions.
- because both are equally important to sustaining life.

Therefore, by ancient Chinese wisdom,
we are advised to balance our diet via:

40% whole grains (moderately Yang)
30% vegetables of all 6 plant parts (moderately Yin)
15% fruits (strongly Yin)
10% legumes (strongly Yang)
5%   nuts and seed (strongly Yang)
[see for more details]

Upsetting the ratios above,
may attract health problems like:
## system clogging (e.g. atherosclerosis) 
-- an outcome of over nourishment or lack of detoxification, 
-- overwhelmed by Yang energies
-- commonly seen among people who eats too much meat or oily food; 
   neglecting fruits and veggies in overall diet

## system dis-coordination (e.g. hormonal imbalance) 
-- an outcome of under nourishment or over detoxification, 
-- predominated by Yin energies
-- commonly seen among people who go on dietetic control or 
   overly frequent detoxification;
   consuming too much fruits and leafy veggies; 
   avoiding grains and nuts.

Now, we may start to realize,
knowing the Yin and Yang of food
is different from
practising it in daily life.

Practising Yin and Yang
requires discipline to abide to the ratios,
on top of awareness and mindfulness. 

Next, we discuss about some simple techniques 
to adjust our dietetic pattern
according to the Yin/Yang oscillation throughout a day :)

Happy reading,
Kee Yew
#Yin Yang
{Learning Holistic Wellness for Wisdom and Compassion}

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