Lo-han Fruit for Soothing Throat and Cough

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Luo Han Guo or Lo-han fruit is a fruit which has been used as a medicinal herb for treating cough and sore throat for centuries in China and is popularly considered to be a longevity aid.

The fruit is collected as a round green fruit that turns brown upon drying. The outer surface of the dried fruit is round and smooth, dusty yellow-brown or dusty green-brown. It is covered with fine, soft hair. The fruit is covered by a hard but thin shell. Inside is a partly dry, flexible substance containing the juice, as well as a large number of seeds. The skin, juicy part, and seeds all have a good sweet flavor. Its nature is cool, and it has no poison.

The sweet taste of Lo-han fruit primarily from mixed mogrosides and are estimated to be about 300 times as sweet as sugar by weight, so that the 80% extracts are nearly 250 times sweeter than sugar. It has more recently been developed into a non-caloric sweetener to compete with other herbal sweeteners in relation to diabetes and obesity, because it can substitute for caloric sugars normally consumed in the diet.

The dried Lo-han fruit is very inexpensive and each one is about the cost of a fresh lemon but has many medicinal benefits. It is known to help relieve sunstroke, moistens the lungs, eliminates phlegm, stops cough, and promotes bowel movements.

Lo Han Green Tea Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Applications:

1. Heat stroke with thirst: Take one fruit, break it open and stir into boiled water. Drink the liquid in place of tea.

2. Acute or chronic throat inflammation:  Take half a fruit and 3-5 seeds. Cover with hot water and simmer for 20 minutes, then swallow the tea very slowly.

3. Chronic cough:  Take 1 piece of fruit, cover with water, simmer, and drink the liquid. Do this twice each day.

4. Constipation in the aged:  Take 2 pieces of fruit, obtain the juicy part and the seed (put the shell aside for other uses), break apart, cover with water, and simmer. Drink before going to bed.

5. Diabetes:  Take an appropriate measure of the fruit and crush it or simmer it into a thick juice and add to food being prepared, using it as a substitute for sugar.

The following is a very easy recipe for general detox or soothing throat infection with phlegm. It can be consumed regularly especially in late fall and early winter months. Please explore other recipes on our website (www.nourishu.com) using the fruit to cook as tea or soup.

Lo Han Green Tea Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Lo-han Quo Green Tea

Symptoms

Throat infection with phlegm.

Therapeutic Effects

Clear phlegm and toxic materials in the lungs. This recipe is good for prevention too.

Ingredients

  • Lo-han quo  羅漢果 – half
  • Green tea - adequate

1.   Put both ingredients in a teapot and pore in adequate boiling water, cover lid and brew for 5 minutes. Serve as tea.

Usage

Drink throughout the day with no restrictions.

Lo Han Green Tea Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Lo-Han Fruit for Soothing Throat & Cough : Chinese Medicine Living

Buddha Bracelet : Chinese Medicine Living


Chayote for Soothing the Respiratory Tract

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Chayote, also known as closing-palm gourd, is very popular in Chinese cuisine for making soups and stews. It is because the gourd is neutral in nature, mild in taste and is very soothing to the internal respiratory tract and lungs. Especially during the winter months when most people easily catch cold or flu and end up with prolong cough, dry mouth and throat, and lots of phlegm; a soothing chayote soup can help to give some relief and speed up the healing process.

Chayote is a good source of vitamin C. It is also widely grown in Mexico and Latin America. It is used mostly in cooked forms but can also be eaten raw in salads and salsas though the raw ones are often regarded as unpalatable and tough in texture. Whether chayote is eaten raw or cooked, the skin has to be peeled because it is slightly toxic. Here is an easy recipe that puts together all the best ingredients to make a winter soothing soup for the whole family.

Chayote, Snow-Ear Mushroom & Pork Soup Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Chayote, Snow-Ear Mushroom and Pork Soup

Therapeutic Effects

  • Soothes throat and lungs
  • Clears phlegm
  • Promotes vital fluids
  • Lubricates skin

Chayote, Snow-Ear Mushroom & Pork Soup Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Ingredients

(4 to 6 servings)

  • Lean pork/pork with bone - 250gm (chopped into smaller pieces)
  • Chayote 合掌瓜 -  three
  • Carrot – 3 to 4
  • Snow-ear mushroom - 2
  • Ginger – 3 slices
  • Apricot kernel – one handful
  • Mandarin Peel – one piece (soaked with white tissue removed)
  • Honey dates 蜜棗 – 4

Chayote, Snow-Ear Mushroom & Pork Soup Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

1.   Rinse pork and put in boiling water to cook for a few minutes, remove and rinse.

2.   Soak snow-ear mushroom for about 10 minutes, cut and remove stem at the bottom and separate mushroom into smaller pieces and rinse.

3.   Peel chayote, cut into halves, remove pit and cut into pieces. Peel carrot and cut into pieces. Rinse other ingredients.

4.   Bring half pot of water in a soup pot to boil and put in all ingredients to boil for about 15 minutes. Reduce heat and let it simmer for at least 2 hours.

5.   Add salt to serve and eat content with soup.

Chayote, Snow-Ear Mushroom & Pork Soup Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Usage

No restrictions. Suitable for the whole family.

 

 

Chayote for Soothing the Respiratory Tract : NourishU

 


Job’s Tears and Red Beans For Longevity

By Vicky Chan of NourishU 

Job’s tears are commonly known as Chinese pearl barley or coix. They are the seed of a grass, grown mostly in Asia and are well known for their many health benefits.

Chinese Medicine classifies the nature of Job’s tears as slightly cold and sweet and they are attributive to spleen, stomach, lungs, liver, and large intestine. They are known to promote diuresis and invigorate the spleen; relieve dampness obstruction and eliminate phlegm. They can also clear away heat and drain pus. Job's tears are a superior herb, proven and safe and commonly used for treating babies with heat rashes, children with smallpox and skin allergies and adults with arthritis, high cholesterol, obesity, scanty urine, swelling and pain in joints and sinews, rheumatism, lung infections, cough with blood in sputum and dry scaly skin. They are almost like an all-encompassing herb which can do so much good for our health.

Modern scientific research has confirmed the anti-allergic effect and cholesterol lowering properties of Job’s tears. Some research suggests that the chemicals in Job's tears might interfere with cancer cell growth, has antioxidant effects and might also decrease the growth of bacteria and parasites. Other research has found that the fiber contained in Job's tears might decrease how much fat and cholesterol the body absorbs.

In order to get the best results from Job’s tears, it is recommended to eat them regularly. There are many ways and recipes incorporating Job`s tears in our everyday diet. They can be made into tea, soups, desserts or stews. Please search our website (www.nourishu.com) to see many recipes using Job’s tears to cure many different health problems.

Chinese Herbal Medicine Cabinet - Burlap : Chinese Medicine LivingNatural Laundry Soap : Chinese Medicine LivingSilver Bodhisattva Earrings : Chinese Medicine Living

With many middle age people nowadays suffering from high blood pressure, obesity and heart disease, one common root cause of their problems is internal dampness or water logging in cells. The following recipe of using Job’s tears and red bean is the best natural cure to solve their health woes. In many Chinese Medicine literatures, this recipe is highly praised as the one thing to take daily for health and longevity. The basic recipe can be extended depending on one`s needs by adding one or two extra ingredients to give added benefits. This is the healthiest breakfast replacement to the unhealthy food that most people are eating daily such as milk and cereals, instant oatmeal, bread and baked goods.

And it is very easy to make. You just need to put the ingredients in a slow cooker and start the cooking before you go to bed and then you have this healthy hot breakfast waiting for you when you get up in the morning. It is especially comforting during winter time to have a hot breakfast before heading out into the cold. You can make it as thick or as watery as you like. You may drink the liquid as a beverage and strain the grains to eat separately at lunch by adding them to a salad or eat them together as a hot thick cereal. You can make a batch good enough for up to two to three days if it is easier for you. Please note: never add rice to this recipe because it will defeat the purpose of using it as a diuretic because rice is bonding and will do the opposite!

Job’s Tears and Red Beans Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

 

Job’s Tears and Red Bean Soup

Symptoms

Overweight, water retention, poor digestive health.

Therapeutic Effects

Releases water retention, promotes energy circulation and reduces body fat and overall body weight.

Ingredients (for 2 to 3 servings)

  • Job’s tears (yi yi ren) 意米 – half cup
  • Red beans – half cup

 

Optional Ingredients

  • add  pumpkin – to treat diabetes, stomach pain, constipation or diarrhea
  • add yam – to treat underweight and lack of appetite
  • add fox nut – to treat weak constitution, weak kidney functions and frequent urination
  • add ginger – to treat cold stomach syndrome with cold hands and feet
  • add black bean – to strengthen kidney
  • add soy bean – to treat water retention in lower legs and feet
  • add pear – to treat cough
  • add longan fruit – to treat lack of energy and over sleeping
  • add lily bulb and lotus seed – to treat insomnia

Job’s Tears and Red Beans Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Directions

  • Rinse all ingredients and put in a pot with adequate water. If using a slow heat cooker, start off the cooking with hot boiling water.
  • Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium and cook for one hour or to desire softness.
  • When ready to eat, add honey or organic sugar to taste if preferred.

Job’s Tears and Red Beans Recipe : Chinese Medicine Living

Usage

No limitations and suitable for all ages.


The Best Yin Foods

By Emma Suttie, D.Ac, AP

One of the things that I love about Chinese medicine (and there are so MANY things I love about it) is how practical it is. Staying healthy is really about lifestyle, and a big part is that the foods we eat are the best medicine. Got a fever? Eat some cucumber or watermelon. Have the chills and can't get warm? Try eating some lamb, or a handful of cherries. The ancient Chinese had a vast knowledge of foods and their healing properties which is why nutritional therapy is one of the building blocks of Chinese medicine and still used by practitioners today. Food really is the best medicine.

Each food in TCM is seen to have a thermal property - warming, cooling or neutral. Conversely, the body can also be hot, cold or balanced, or neutral and certain illnesses introduce heat or cold into the body, so in Chinese medicine we eat cooling foods for excess heat, or warming foods for excess cold. Today, we will look at foods that nourish the yin / cold / water aspect of the body and are particularly beneficial if you have an excess of yang, fire or heat. But how do you know if you have excess heat? Below is a list of symptoms that point to an excess of heat or yang.  If you have many of these, you might want to introduce some Yin foods into your diet to help clear the Yang and build Yin.

Signs of Heat in the Body

Signs of Excess Yang

  • Fever
  • Aversion to heat
  • Desires cold
  • Redness - swellings, inflammation, rashes, sores
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • High blood pressure
  • Extreme or uncontrollable anger or frustration
  • Constipation
  • Dark, yellow urine
  • Desire for cold drinks
  • Extreme thirst
  • Blood in stools or urine
  • Stools with a strong odour
  • Red tongue with deep cracks
  • Dry skin and hair
  • Chapped lips
  • Nose bleeds
  • Canker sores
  • Bad taste in the mouth

Other Factors that Contribute to
Foods Thermal Nature

raw

There are several widely accepted factors that also affect the thermal nature of the foods we eat.

  • Growing Time - Plants that take longer to grow (potatoes, carrots, cabbage, squash) are generally considered to be more warming, and those that grow quickly (lettuce, radish, cucumber, summer squash) are considered more cooling.
  • Raw - Raw foods are more cooling that cooked foods.
  • Refrigeration - Food that is chilled and eaten cold is more cooling.
  • Fertilizer - Foods that are chemically fertilized because it is forced to grow quickly is considered more cooling. This includes more commercially grown fruits and vegetables.
  • Colour - foods that are blue, green or purple in colour are considered cooler than foods that are red, orange and yellow. This even applies to the same foods, for example, a green apple is considered cooler than a red one.
  • Cooking Methods - Foods that are cooked for longer periods of time, at higher temperatures are considered more warming. But cooking food on low heat for a longer period is more warming than cooking it at a high temperature for a shirt time.
  • Chewing - Chewing food thoroughly helps the Spleen to digest it (because we love our Spleens, right?) and creates warmth. Even cooling foods can be warmed by chewing them thoroughly. Chewing also helps to break down the food more thoroughly before reaching the Stomach and the action of chewing releases saliva that helps break the food down further which helps assimilation and absorption and we want as much of that as possible!

The Best Yin Foods

Green Tea

Green Tea Yin Food

Kelp and All Seaweeds

seaweed yin food

Tofu

tofu yin food

Goat Milk / Yoghurt / Cheese

goat

Sardine

Sardines Yin Food

Alfalfa Sprouts

Sprouts Yin Food

Bok Choy

Bok Choy Yin Food

Cilantro

cilantro yin food

Banana

banana yin food

Watermelon

watermelon yin food

Blackberries

black berries yin food

All Citrus Fruits

citrus fruits yin food

There are many yin foods, and these are only a few. Introducing yin foods into your diet is not only a good idea when you are suffering from an excess of yang like a fever, they are also good to eat in hotter months like the peak of summer to keep us hydrated and cool. So, next time you feel overheated or come down with a case of excess yang, reach for one of these yin foods (or many) and you will be amazed at how quickly you feel relief. :)

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Burdock for Liver Health

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

It is spring again and is a crucial time to pay attention to our liver health according to Chinese Medicine because the liver is most active in spring.

Liver is the detox engine of our body. It is a part of the digestive system for making cholesterol to digest fatty foods and to dispose of waste products from our blood stream. The liver is also responsible for maintaining the equilibrium of our overall health and should be well taken care of to avoid life-threatening diseases.

The most damaging things to liver health are alcohol, medicine and sorrow. Alcohol, pharmaceutical drugs and supplements are all chemicals which can have unhealthy results to the liver. Mixing them can create toxins and can be poisonous. If you have to take drugs, it is best to take them with at least a one hour interval between each one. Toxins cause our liver to overwork and they can also scar and harden liver tissue. Sorrow, sadness and depression can cause stagnation of liver energy which can inhibit proper liver function.

We should also be careful of what we breathe in. When cleaning with aerosol sprays or cleaners, or any other form of spray such as paint or air fresheners or cosmetic products, we must make sure that the room is ventilated and cover our nose with a mask to prevent breathing in toxic chemicals. When using insecticides, make sure the skin is covered because the chemicals can get into the body through our skin. All toxins require the liver to filter them out therefore over-working this important organ.

The liver does not complain until it is too late. We should be aware of symptoms of problems and check our liver through blood tests regularly.  The symptoms include lack of energy, lack of appetite, indigestion, acid reflux, milky eyes, dark yellow urine, flaky rash, itchy skin, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome and fluid retention. Poor digestion leading to leaky gut syndrome will cause toxins to get into the blood stream, making the liver work harder.

Burdock for Liver Health

The purpose of a liver supporting diet is first ‘to do no harm’. Avoid alcohol and toxins including drugs. Secondly, eat food made from scratch with good oil and not too much seasoning and sauces and with little and simple cooking so that the food can be easily digested and absorbed. Eat small amounts of high quality protein and increase the intake of green vegetables for fibre and essential minerals.  Drinking good clean water will also help the body to flush out toxins and keep the liver healthy.

The following is a soup recipe that is best for our liver in spring, when liver energies are at their peak.

Burdock

Burdock contains a number of nutrients important to liver function. They include vitamins B1, B6 and B12 which are essential for the function of phase 1 liver detoxification's pathways, vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant and sulphur which is essential for a number of important phase 2 liver detoxification pathways in which potent toxins created by phase 1 detoxification are neutralized. Burdock also contains other substances such as arctiin which act to improve liver and gallbladder function.

Burdock has many other health benefits and is believed to be the main reason why the Japanese hold the world record for longevity because burdock is a staple in their diet. Please visit our website www.nourishu.com to find out more information and recipes using burdock.

Burdock, Carrot and Pork Soup

Burdock for Liver Health

SYMPTOMS

High cholesterol

THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Lower blood lipids
  • Detoxifies
  • Promotes liver health

INGREDIENTS

(4 to 6 servings)

  • Fresh burdock 新鮮牛蒡 -  one piece (about 500gm)
  • Carrot 紅蘿蔔 – 2 to 3 (250gm)
  • Green radish青蘿蔔 – one large (250gm)
  • Honey dates 蜜棗 or dried figs - 3
  • Apricot kernel 南北杏 – one handful (about 15gm)
  • Citrus Peel (chen-pi) 陳皮 – one piece (pre-soaked and with white tissue removed)
  • Pork shoulder cut with bone  or bone-in chicken breast – 300gm (pre-cut into large pieces)
  • Ginger – 2 slices

1.   Wash pork, put in boiling water to cook for a few minutes, remove and rinse.

2.   Peel carrot and radish and cut by rolling cut into pieces.

3.   Peel burdock and cut into thin slices.

4.   Rinse other ingredients and put all into a soup pot with about 3 liters of water. Bring to a rolling boil, remove foam and reduce heat to medium low and let it simmers for about 3 hours to about 6 cups of broth left. Add more water (boiling hot) to the cooking if necessary.

5.   When done, add salt to taste and serve soup with some meat, burdock and carrot. Burdock is a good source of fibre.

Burdock for Liver Health

USAGE

No restrictions and suitable for all ages.



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Taro Root for Immune Health

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Taro is a widely cultivated tropical Asian plant with edible broad peltate leaves and a large starchy tuber. It is also widely grown in the Pacific islands, West Africa and Amazonian regions of South America.

Taro root is high in calories, low in fats and protein, free from gluten, high in dietary fiber and antioxidants. It contains B-complex vitamins such as B-6, folates, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, and thiamin. It provides healthy amounts of  important minerals like zinc, magnesium, copper, iron, and manganese. In addition, the root has high amounts of potassium, an important component of cell and body fluids that help regulate heart rate and blood pressure. Taro is very starchy but it has slow digesting complex carbohydrates therefore can help gradual rise in blood sugar levels. Cooked taro is also high in vitamin E, which can protect cells from oxidation by free radicals, protect against heart disease and certain types of cancer.

Taro Root - Immune System Recipe

Raw taro is slightly toxic. When cutting the root, the white starch can cause skin irritation and itchiness to some people. Therefore, it is recommended to handle taro wearing gloves and never eat taro raw. When selecting taro root, pick the ones lighter in weight because they are starchier, cook faster and melt easily which is ideal for certain dishes such as stuffings and desserts.

Chinese medicine regards taro as neutral in nature, sweet and pungent in taste and it acts on stomach and large intestine. Its health benefits include improving the immune system, reducing signs of aging, improving lung health and reducing abnormal cell growth. Therefore, it is commonly used for preventing and treating tumor growth. It is also highly recommended for people going through chemo therapy or radio-therapy to help in detoxification and recovery.

Taro root is very common in Asian cuisine and can be found in most Asian grocery stores. It is used in making chips, fries, taro net, bread, desserts, stews, soups, fried rice, stuffing and even ice cream. The best way to prepare taro is to cut it into the size and shape according to your recipe and then put it on a plate to steam or just cook. You can then add taro to mix in with the rest of the recipe towards the end and the taro will turn out perfectly. The following is a recipe to show you how to prepare a quick and delicious dish, that also happens to be great for your health.

Taro Root Recipe - Nutritional Therapy in TCM

Taro Chicken in Coconut Cream

Therapeutic effects

Detoxifies, improves complexion, boosts the immune system, improves overall health.

Ingredients:  (3 to 4 servings)

  • Taro root – 600 gm

  • Boneless and skinless chicken thigh – 2 pieces

  • Coconut cream – one cup

  • Minced ginger – one spoonful

  • Minced garlic – one spoonful

  • Green onion – 2 (chopped)

  • Cooking wine – 2 spoonfuls

Instructions

1.  Wash chicken, cut into bite size pieces, rinse and drain. Mix chicken with salt, pepper, one spoonful of cooking wine, a pinch of potato starch and one spoonful of oil.

2.  Cut off taro skin, rinse and cut into match-box size pieces. Put taro on a plate and steam over high heat for about 10 minutes to taro is cooked. You can test by sticking a chop stick or a fork through a few pieces. If it can get through easily, it is cooked. Remove from heat and put aside.

3.  Warm 2 to 3 spoonfuls of oil in a non-stick skillet. Add ginger and garlic and stir until golden brown. Remove skillet from heat, discard the brown ginger and garlic and keep the oil. Reheat skillet with oil and add in chicken pieces to slightly brown on both sides. Then add one spoonful of cooking wine and half a cup of water. Cover with lid and let it simmer for 5 minutes.

4.  Mix in coconut cream and taro and let it cook for a few more minutes to mix well.

5.  Add salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle in green onion to serve.

Taro Root Chinese Medicine Recipe

Usage

For people with weak digestive systems, eat taro sparingly because it takes longer to digest.


Chive – The Mega Food for Your Health

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Chive is a grass like perennial vegetable with long green leave tubules, is very inexpensive and can be found in most grocery stores. It is in the same allium family as garlic, onions, scallions and leeks. Chive is very popular in Chinese cuisine because of its many health benefits. Many households grow chives in their backyard or in containers because it is easy to grow and can be handy in times of need. Besides, after each harvest cutting, all the leaves will grow back very quickly giving continuous yield from early spring to late autumn and year after year without much work. To maximize chives' healthful effects, homegrown organic chives and freshly cut momentarily before cooking is the best way to receive the maximum benefit.

Chive Recipe

Chinese medicine defines chives as warm in nature and pungent in taste. It is a yang food which acts on the liver, stomach and kidney, warms the middle region and promotes energy circulation. Chive is commonly known as a ‘rising yang vegetable’ because it is used to treat men with impotence. Chive is also known to be effective in dispersing blood coagulation, treating diarrhea and intestinal infections, treating difficulty in swallowing and improving appetite, relieving stomach aches of cold nature and stopping nosebleeds. The best season to eat chive is spring because the new growth has the most nutrients to offer and they work more effectively with the spleen system.

Modern science has found chives to be low in calories but high in folates, anti-oxidants, plant fiber, minerals (copper, iron, manganese, zinc, and calcium) and vitamins (K, B, A and C). It can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and prevent dangerous blood clots. Chive also has anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-fungal and has some cancer-fighting properties.

Chive is certainly more than just a vegetable. It is almost like a standby home remedy which can come to the rescue for many ailments. I can remember when my brother was about 3 years old and he swallowed a dime while playing with it. My parents quickly cooked some chives and fed him and the dime came out with his stools in just a few hours. Chive is also effective in treating nosebleeds, stomach discomfort and overgrowth of intestinal bacteria or worms, especially in children.

Many people eat chives to treat erectile dysfunction. Chive is also god sent for people with kidney deficiency which has manifested as incontinence or difficulty in passing urine, or water retention in the lower legs and feet. Taking chive regularly for a few weeks to a couple of months can cure these problems permanently. The following is a very simple but effective recipe just for that.

Please have a look at our website www.nourishu.com to find other recipes for cooking with chives. You can also put chives in your noodle, soup, or dumpling, or stir-fry them with meat or shrimp and seafood. The distinctive pungent taste and the crunchiness will make your food more inviting and tasty.

Chive and Egg Stir Fry Recipe

Stir-fried Chives with Egg

SYMPTOMS

Kidney deficiencies with symptoms such as too much or too little urine, incontinence, swelling of legs and feet, lack of energy and/or impotence.

THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

Nourishes kidney and promotes yang energy.

INGREDIENTS  (2 to 3 servings)

  • Chinese chives – one bunch (about 300gm)
  • Eggs – 3
  • Minced ginger – one spoonful
  • Cooking wine – 2 table spoonfuls

DIRECTIONS

1.   Rinse chives a few times, strain and cut into bite size sections.

2.   Beat eggs and mix in seasoning to taste (salt, pepper, one spoonful of cooking oil).

3.   Warm 2 spoonfuls of oil in a non-stick pan. Add minced ginger and stir for half a minute. Add chives and stir for another minute until just cooked. Add cooking wine and a small pitch of salt. Mix and put chives onto a plate.

4.   Warm another spoonful of oil in the pan. Pour in egg mixture and scramble to egg until its about 80% cooked. Return chive to pan to mix with egg, then put everything onto a plate and serve.

USAGE

Can be eaten with no restrictions.

Chive and Egg Stir Fry Recipe


Eight Treasures Dessert - The Nutrient Powerhouse

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Warming & Nourishing Dessert

In winter months, we all tend to eat more to keep warm and exercise less, therefore it is hard to avoid packing on extra pounds. Especially with all the festivities and celebrations happening at the same time, surely we will be tempted to indulge in more heavy, greasy and high calorie foods. The worst culprit are desserts, such as Christmas puddings and cakes. They are packed with sugar, butter, dried fruits, chocolate, cheese, cream and alcohol which inevitably can quickly add pounds to our bodies and create an extra burden to our health.

If you are health conscious but do not want to give up on desserts completely and are hoping to find healthier alternatives, here is a perfect recipe for you. It is quick and easy to make, very soothing and warming to the body, not heavy and is easy to digest. It can even give your family and friends a new surprise. Each ingredient chosen is a powerhouse of nutrients by itself with so many health benefits to offer. (You can search our website www.noruishu.com to see the therapeutic effects of each ingredient.) The best part of this recipe is you can vary the quantity of each ingredient according to your own likings. You can even skip one or two ingredients if they are not conveniently availability to you. No matter what you do, it will just come out perfectly.

Eight Treasures Dessert

SYMPTOMS

Dry skin, dry throat and/or with occasional dry cough.

THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

Promotes vital fluids, lowers internal heat and moisturizes skin.

Eight Treasures Dessert : TCM Recipe

INGREDIENTS (3 to 4 Servings)

  • snow-ear mushroom – one

  • honey dates – four

  • gingko seeds – 20

  • apple – one

  • banana – one

  • fresh lily bulb – 50gm

  • egg – one

  • tapioca pearls / sagu – 25gm

  • sugar – to taste

    INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Soak snow-ear mushroom with plenty of water for around 30 minutes. Cut out the brown base and separate mushroom into smaller pieces. Rinse a few times.
  2. Rinse honey dates and gingko, and put together with mushroom in a pot with about 8 cups of water. Cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove skin and core of apple, cut into small cubes and add to the cooking.
  4. Add sagu and stir until they become transparent (about 3 to 4 minutes) to act as healthy thickener.
  5. Add sugar to taste. Add more water if necessary.
  6. Separate lily bulbs and rinse clean. Cut banana into small cubes. Add the two to the cooking for just another 2 minutes more.
  7. Beat egg, pour and stir into the cooking and turn off heat. Serve warm.

USAGE

No restrictions and is suitable for all ages.

Remarks

Fresh gingko seeds and fresh lily bulbs can be found in most Chinese supermarkets in the refrigerated fresh produce section.

 


Bitter Melon - The Number One Melon for Diabetes

By Vicky Chan of NourishU

Li Shizhen (1518 -1593), one of the greatest Chinese doctors, scientists, herbalists and acupuncturists in history ranked bitter melon as the number one melon on earth in his renowned medical textbook, the Compendium of Medical Herbs (1596).

He described bitter melon as cool in nature, bitter in taste and with proven healing properties of expelling evil heat, sharpening vision, improving liver function, promoting heart health and expelling toxic effects in the body.

In recent years, western medical science has confirmed the effectiveness of bitter melon in controlling viral diseases, regulating metabolism and transporting glucose from the blood into the cells, therefore reducing the body’s blood sugar levels. That is why bitter melon is most beneficial to people with diabetes.

Bitter melon is also known to cure a large number of ailments including stomach complaints, skin problems, type 1 herpes simplex virus, measles and chickenpox.

With the many health benefits of bitter melon, it has long been in use by many cultures around the world as home remedies. It is important for people today to know about it and eat more for good health. However, because of its distinctive bitter taste, not too many people really like to eat them. To make them less bitter, it is important to clean out the seeds and white membrane in the middle completely. Cutting them thinly or blanching them in hot water for a couple of minutes before cooking can definitely help. The best approach is to combine bitter melon with meat or seafood to make them delicious. We have many recipes in our website using them for treating various ailments.

Here is a quick and easy recipe to make a delicious dish. It is most palatable and even welcome by children. It is best for preventing and treating diabetes.

Bitter Melon Omelette with Goji-berries and Enoki Mushroom

Bitter melon recipe ingredients

THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

Detoxifies, clears internal heat and regulates blood sugar.

INGREDIENTS

  • Bitter Melon 涼瓜 – one
  • Enoki Mushrooms 金針菇 – one package
  • Goji Berries – one to two table spoons
  • Chopped Scallions and Coriander– one spoonful each
  • Eggs – two to three
  • Sugar, Salt, Cooking Wine and Sesame Oil

Bitter melon recipe ingredients 2

DIRECTIONS

1.   Wash bitter melon, cut in half lengthwise, and remove seeds and white membrane with a spoon. Cut each half lengthwise once again. Then slice melon thinly, season with one spoonful of salt for about 10 minutes and rinse.

2.   Cut out stems of enoki mushrooms. Cut the rest into short sections and soak with plenty of water for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse and strain.

3.   Soak goji berries for 15 minutes, changing the water a couple of times and strain.

4.   Beat eggs in a bowl with one spoonful of cooking wine and one spoonful of sesame oil.

5.   Warm two spoonfuls of oil in a non-stick pan. Add bitter melon to stir fry for a couple of minutes. Then add one spoonful of salt and sugar and about half a cup of water and let it cook for 10 to 15 minutes until melon is tender and there is a little water left.

6.  Add enoki mushrooms, goji berries, scallions and coriander and stir to combine. Let cook for a few minutes.

7.   Add half of the egg mixture to the cooking and let it brown slightly on one side. Then flip over, add the remaining egg mixture and brown the other side. Add more oil to the cooking if necessary. When it is evenly brown, it is ready to serve.

Bitter melon omelette with goji berries and enoki mushrooms

USAGE

No Restrictions. This recipe is best served with rice.


Spring Recipe for Nourishing Liver

By Vicky Chan of Nourish U

The arrival of spring brings a new season of growth to all living things on earth. That is why Chinese medicine identifies spring as wood. According to the TCM five-element theory, wood represents our liver and gallbladder system. What this means is that spring is the season when the liver energy is most intense; therefore it is the best time to address and promote liver health.

The liver is the only organ in our body which is responsible for removing poisons and toxins from our blood, making bile to support digestion and making new blood and protein to support growth.

Diet has an immediate impact on liver health. Overeating, especially rich and greasy foods can make the liver system sluggish and can slow down liver functions. Too much alcohol can damage liver cells and can cause hardening of the liver and cancer. Besides food, exercise and emotions can also affect liver health. Too much sorrow is known to suppress liver energy and cause a system failure. Unhealthy lifestyle such as not sleeping at night can interfere with the liver detoxification and blood building cycles. Therefore, a healthy diet and lifestyle and the right state of mind and balanced emotions are the keys to good health.

Spring cleaning is not only necessary for our homes and gardens, but it is also necessary for our bodies, especially the liver to clean out toxins after a winter season of heavy foods and indulgences. A cleansing diet with an emphasis on fresh fruits and vegetables is most appropriate. Adding a bit more sour taste to our foods and drinks such as lemon and vinegar can produce effective contracting, astringent and cleansing effects.

After cleansing the liver, nourishing it is also very important. There are many foods and herbs which are excellent for promoting liver health such as asparagus, dandelion, goji-berries, bean sprout and chives. Liver meats are best for promoting liver health. One common misconception about liver or organ meat is that they are full of toxins and cholesterol and therefore is not good for health. In fact, liver meat has an exceptionally high content of quality protein, vitamin A, B vitamins and in particular B12, folic acid, minerals such as copper, zinc, chromium, copper and CoQ10. The by-products of liver detoxification cannot be stored in liver cells because there is no room for them. The World Health Organization has just recently included pork liver as one of the most healthy foods to eat.

Please refer to our website to see more foods and herbs suggestions and recipes for promoting liver health for spring. Here is a recipe using pork or chicken liver to nourish our liver. It is very easy to make, delicious and suitable for the whole family.

IMG_3080

Stir-fry Liver with Chives and Goji-berries

THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

Nourishes liver, promotes good eyesight and increases yang energy.

INGREDIENTS: (2 to 3 servings)

  • Chicken or pork liver – 250gm
  • Chinese chives – one bunch (about 300gm)
  • Astragalus (huang qi) 黃耆 - 30 gm
  • Goji-berry / Chinese Wolfberry (gou ji zi) 枸杞子 - 20 gm
  • Minced or grated ginger – two tablespoons
  • Soy sauce – one teaspoon
  • Potato starch – one teaspoon
  • Cooking wine – 2 tablespoons

IMG_3082

DIRECTIONS

1. Rinse astragalus, cut into short sections and put with 2.5 cups of water in a pot and
let it soak for 30 minutes. Then bring water to a boil and lower heat to medium-low and
cook for 30 minutes to yield 1/3 cup of tea. Discard astragalus and put tea aside.

2. Rinse chives a few times, strain and cut into bite-size sections.

3. Wash liver with salt, rinse, cut liver into thin slices and season with soy sauce, half
portions of ginger and wine, and lastly mix in starch.

4. Soak goji-berries for 10 to 15 minutes with water and rinse a few times. Soak goji-
berries with half of the astragalus tea.

5. Warm one tablespoon of oil in a pan. Add the remaining ginger and stir. Add chive
and stir for 2 minutes. Sprinkle in a pinch of salt. Add the rest of the astragalus tea and
cook for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat and put chives aside on a plate.

6. Warm another spoon of oil in the pan and add liver. Let liver cook for one minute
each on both sides. Add in goji-berries with tea and cook for 2 more minutes or to liver
is just done. Put chives back into the cooking and mix. Put everything onto a plate and serve.

USAGE

No restrictions



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